I tend to think of my freezer as a savings account. When times are good, you deposit your loot, and when times are bad, or it’s simply A Monday, you make a withdrawal.
Lurking in the back is some frozen sweet potato mash. I’m a big fan of freezing leftover mash, as it can be used for all sorts of things later. There is a trick, though. If you put your mash in the freezer in a block, it will take about six weeks (or a blowtorch) to thaw it. Better than that, push it into square sandwich bags, and once the bag is sealed (or almost) squish the contents, ’til you end up with a flattish slab of the stuff. If the flattish slab happens to accidentally be the size and shape of the top of the dish in which you habitually make Shepherds’ Pie, then I won’t tell anyone.
So, one leek, peeled and finely chopped, and fried in olive oil for about 20 minutes; long enough to colour. The mash and some water goes on top and gets stirred. The starch in the mash will thicken the mix almost immediately, so have a freshly boiled kettle on hand, and keep adding water and stirring, until the desired consistency is reached. Simmer for about 20 minutes and you’re ready to go.
You could content yourself with just checking the seasoning. Or…
- you could whip up some chilli, garlic, cumin and turmeric first, fry it, and add the other ingredients (garnishing with coriander not a bad idea after this)
- be subtle, and just add a bay leaf and grate a small amount of nutmeg over the top before simmering