Leftover Mashed Potatoes…

…become a really good chowder.

I was hungry today around 12:30 and began the opening and closing of the refrigerator in the fairly routine process of making a decision on whether to eat leftovers, start something new, etc…  I had a number of options, none of which really appealed to me at the time.  Black bean chili, leftover mashed potatoes, salad, cold grilled salmon and on it went.  I took the potatoes out of the fridge, then put them back.  I took the salmon and greens out, then put them back.  Had I remembered that there was a relatively new package of Graeter’s vanilla in the freezer, I may not have had the breakthrough.

OK, maybe turning leftover mashed potatoes and corn into a chowder wouldn’t be considered a breakthrough.  I mean, I have blogged about corn chowder before, but from scratch.  A big pot.  Not this time. 

I grabbed a saucepan, an onion and some celery and began putting things together.  I had a two cup container of potatoes left from the other night’s dinner.   I searched the fridge for the lima beans from the same night, but they were claimed by my husband for his lunch.  So much for the succotash soup I had envisioned.

I chopped up one half of a small onion and diced some celery and celery leaves and threw them in  the pan with a bit of olive oil and butter.  I went to the computer to try and register my son for his ACT while the veggies were softening up.  I came back to a near catastrophy with some of the onions bordering on too dark.  A quick stir got them back in order.  The expletives I threw at my carelessness helped to cool things off too, I’m sure.

I dumped in the lumpy mashed potatoes, added a bit of vegetable broth and some salt and pepper and stirred things up.  I cleaned the kernels off 1 1/2 ears of leftover corn and dumped those in too.  Adding enough half and half to loosen the mixture up, I turned the heat to low and let the pot simmer down a bit.

The result, only about 15 minutes later, tasted so good I thought the soup worthy of a sprinkling of some hot bacon crumbles and some fresh herbs.  I chose thyme, parsley and chives.  I moaned my way through a bowl of the soup and went back for just a few more bites, just to be sure it tasted as good I as thought. 

My leftover potatoes produced one of the best chowders I had tasted.  Yum.

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2 responses to “Leftover Mashed Potatoes…

  1. First, I really enjoy your e-mails since I am up half the night it is like much wanted company. I never know what to do with potatoes! I don’t measure so I cook way too many. Where do you get your fresh herbs from??

    • Sandra,

      I grow most of my herbs, many of which last throughout most of the year. Right now I am lamenting the fact that the basil and other tender herbs will be leaving me soon. I still have lots of chives, sage, parsley and others. Out of season, I think the best source is Paul’s Fruit Market

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