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Truffled Parmesan Mash

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I think (now that could be dangerous..) that most have a tendency to deem mashed potatoes as a winter-holiday side. Oh, but this dietitian loves her some mashed potatoes and will (as they should be) eat with everything, in any season, and sometimes as a meal in and of themselves (Typically we have, wait, no we always have leftovers.  The next day I’ll eat them again for dinner if my Fireman happens to be on shift.  If not, they sub for my usual breakfast.  No lie.)

{What ways can you think to mix up your mash?} 

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*Use lowfat buttermilk instead of regular milk. An absolute perfect way to add a buttery flavor to your potatoes without actually adding butter.  Low fat buttermilk is decadent without caloires it would seem to have
*Mix it up with some tahini, garbanzo beans and lemon juice.  Hummus Mashed Potatoes anyone?
*Add herbs — thyme and rosemary work well.. I also love oregano, or even a little smoked paparika.
*Mash boiled turnips with regular potatoes.
*Mix in any variety of blue cheese for a flavor punch. A little goes a long way!
*Mix in cream cheese, dill, and smoked salmon and serve on your brunch table along side the Eggs Benedict
*Mix in shredded cheese: gouda, goat, gruyere, or fontina.
*Mix your taters! Fold in mashed sweet potatoes for added fiber, flavor, Vitamin A, and beta carotine.
*Add a head of roasted garlic (wrap garlic in foil; bake at 400 degrees for an hour; mash).

So what’s my favorite way to mix things up? I confess I have a love for all things listed above, and have made each and every one of them.  Recently, I’ve fallen in love with the versatility and flavor of truffle oil.  A two ounce bottle of truffle oil costs about $12 {Don’t cringe just yet!}, but I am honest when I say a little goes a long way to add an earthy and bomb-diggity flavor to this simple side dish.  Not a flavor I would sub in a salad dressing, though- ew.. definitly not.

Look for smaller bottles, as I did, in most gourmet grocery stores (or online).  It is also delicious drizzled over polenta or risotto! Oh, the possibilities!

Truffled Parmesan Mash
2 pounds butter or red potatoes, scrubbed and quartered
6 cups coarsely chopped cauliflower (about 1 medium to large head)
1/2 cup skim (fat-free) milk
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated parmesan cheese 

1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons white truffle oil
1/3 cup pesto (I used sun-dried tomato)
Chives for garnish
DIRECTIONSPlace potato in a saucepan, and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 12 minutes or until just tender. Add cauliflower to the simmering water 5 minutes or until tender. (you may have to increase the temperature to bring it back to simmering.)  Drain.

Add milk, cheese, and salt to the cauliflower potato mixture.  Blend with a hand mixer (or easily thrown in the food processor) until desired texture, scraping sides of the bowl occasionally.  Drizzle with truffle oil and fold in.  Serve each portion of cauliflower mash with about 2 teaspoons of pesto and a sprinkle of finely chopped chives

Nutrition Information
Serves 8 (about 2/3 cup mash and 2 teaspoons pesto, each)
Calories: 178
Fat: 7 g
Carbohydrate: 24 g
Fiber: 4 g
Protein: 6 g

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