If I were given the choice of only one vegetable to eat, ever, it would be the potato. Fried, baked, twice baked, boiled, roasted, steamed, hashed, or mashed I'd take the potato over any other vegetable in the whole wide world. Now get a load of this and tell me you don't agree.
In case you haven't noticed the big guy and I don't eat a lot of potatoes because we really try and limit the starchy carbs in our diet. If we're going to give in and have some, we usually choose pasta or even corn. Last night was an exception though. I remembered a mashed potato pie my seester Joy used to make and thought darn - why don't I do that? It's innovative, pretty darn easy to put together and for sure, I don't think I've ever seen a picture of one on my fellow blogger's sites recently. I mean one strives to be different, doesn't one? Download Mashed Potato Pie
This particular puffy wonder combines all the flavors of twice baked potatoes including sour cream, bacon, onion, and cheddar cheese along with some cottage cheese and a couple of eggs. I used as many lite products as I could just to cut the calories, although I've a sneaking suspicion if I counted it all out I'd be sick with shock and awe. But what the heck - this "pie" makes 6 or 8 rather filling servings and is great along side just about any protein including sausages, steak, chicken or fish.
It freezes well, reheats OK in the newker although the crust may not stand up too well, and even makes a super breakfast food along with a little bacon and a fried egg. Sliced into thin wedges accompanied by some spicy chutney or Branston Pickle, it'll even pass as a lovely appetizer. Who knew one could make such a thing out of ordinary potatoes. I mean we've all heard of the phenomenal sweet potato pie, but a savory one out of mashed?
As for the meat - with the big guy at the table we've gotta' have meat - adapted from a Bon Appetit recipe the big attraction to this pork is the fig and balsamic "reduction" which is really just a fancy name for a pan sauce. Download Pork with Fig Balsamic Sauce After the pork was browned and removed from the pan, I sauteed some shallots in a little butter, deglazed the pan with balsamic vinegar then added chicken stock and then reduced it over high heat. Joined by some dried mission figs (you could use fresh) and a little heavy cream and further reduced, the sauce was finished with a pat a butter and another splash of balsamic just before it was dished up.
It is incredible. In fact, the big guy said it at least 4 maybe 5 times and admitted it was better than any restaurant food he had this week, and he ate at in some pretty fancy establishments on Tuesday and Wednesday. I figured the pie was going to be the hit of the dinner plate, but the pork may have just won out. It's kinda difficult choosing between perfection and perfection!
I know I say "incredible" about a lot of things that come out of our kitchen, and you've certainly read it before in this blog, but honestly this dinner was not to be believed. The pie stands on its own, but accompanied by the pork with Fig and Balsamic reduction, it was ....words fail me. Honestly! I can't imagine a better dinner, though that pie with country fried steak and gravy, or Carbonnade (beef cooked in beer)...oh baby! You've just GOT to try it!