Perfect Thanksgiving mashed potatoes

  1. Use the right kind of potato. Russets work best.
  2. Fill a big pot with cold, salty water. You can’t put too much salt in the water. It should be as salty as seawater.
  3. Peel the potatoes and drop them right into the cold water to keep them from turning brown. If you want to add garlic, do it now. Add the cloves of peeled garlic to the cold water.
  4. Put the pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil until the potatoes are tender.
  5. Drain well, return the potatoes to the pan and put them over low heat for five minutes or so to dry them out.
  6. Warm equal parts cream, milk, and butter in a small saucepan. You don’t want to add anything cold to the warm potatoes.
  7. Never, ever, ever mash them with a food processor or an electric mixer. Use a food mill or a potato ricer to mash the potatoes. Crush the garlic cloves in with the potatoes.
  8. Slowly add in the warm butter mixture, mixing well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Makes mounds of fluffy, creamy potatoes.

Returning to me

I’ve spent the last couple of years in a whirl of activity, so busy that I couldn’t read a book, take time to knit or write, or even take an hour of rest without feeling guilty that I was letting down one person or another in some way. I haven’t had time for friends or family. I haven’t had time for me.

Instead of doing anything fun, I’ve been studying productivity books, trying to figure out how to pack more and more into my days, trying to figure out how I was going to get it all done, how I could be organized enough to balance the one million different projects I was trying to work on. And now, this realization – organization and efficiency can only get you so far. Eventually, you have to do less.

I was beginning to feel so lost, stressed and confused. I’ve decided to let go of so much of what I was doing and take some time doing all the things that I’ve been missing. Feeding my soul. Absorbing books. Writing my thoughts. Making art. Knitting socks. Talking to friends. Sewing. Learning crochet. Spending hours sipping tea and chatting with kindred spirits.

I’ve had on blinders. I’ve closed out almost everyone, ignoring my family of choice and their support and love. What an awful place I’ve been.

It’s time to move on.

Image credit: Dhilung Kirat