The potato is such an ubiquitous staple in Poland that, usually, little effort is expended upon it. Potatoes are peeled, boiled, salted, and then served alongside almost anything, really, and at all times of the year. They are also baked, fried, steamed, and pureed, or cut up and thrown into stews, just like they are everywhere else. But every once in a while one wants something different, and for those occasions we make this dish. It has the virtue of looking much like ordinary mashed potatoes, but tasting mysterious and unusual. If serving it to guests, ask them to guess the mystery ingredient.
- Baking or Yellow Potatoes – scrubbed clean, not peeled, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
- Celery Roots – 1 large or 2 small, peeled and cut into 1 1/2 in chunks
- Salt – to taste, but be generous
- Milk – to desired consistency
- Butter – 2 tbsp, plus more if necessary
- Flat-leaf parsley (or fresh dill) – 1 tbsp, minced
- Pepper – Freshly ground
- Place the potatoes and celery root in a large pot filled with water, and 1 tsp salt, and bring to a boil. When both vegetables are soft enough to be pierced easily with a fork, remove and drain. In the same (now dry) pot, or in a mixing bowl, if you prefer, add the milk, butter, and parsley or dill to the vegetables, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Mash together with a potato masher or with an electric hand mixer on low speed. The idea isn’t to create a puree, but rather a rough-looking mash, with the skins in there, too, and little flecks of green parsley scattered throughout.
- Add more butter or a few more drops of milk if the mixture looks too dry. Correct for seasoning and serve immediately.
- Chef Tip: If you have leftovers, then the next morning butter 4 little ramekins or 1 ceramic coated oven safe baking dish, spoon the leftover mash in, and dot with butter. Bake 20 minutes in a 425F oven until crispy on the top, sides, and bottom.