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Sep 10, 2008 11:24 AM

Plating mash?

I'm cooking venison steaks for dinner tonight. With that I'm going to have potato and carrot mash, creamed leeks and red wine jus.

Since I'm silly enough to try and blog most of my dinners I am now in a conundrum on how to plate this?

My current idea is to make a centered flat base of mash, on top of that I'll put the leeks and then finally the venison steak. The finishing touch will be to spoon some of the red wine jus around the edges of the plate.

Does anyone else here have any better/different ideas? If so I'd be more than grateful to hear them.

Thanks in advance, Mike

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  1. I think that sounds lovely, though I might put the leeks on the side, for little additional colour on the plate.

    6 Replies
    1. re: MMRuth

      I agree with that suggestion. Creamed leeks layered would kinda get lost in the mix, seems to me, and I prefer asymmetrical layouts anyway as looking less contrived. And while we're at it, could you tell us how you prepare those leeks?

      1. re: Will Owen


        I just julienned half a leek. Then I sweated that in about 1 - 2 tbsp of butter until nicely softened. Once softened I added 2 tbsp of double cream and let that bubble away for a couple of minutes. Oh yeah, salt and pepper too.

        // Mike

        1. re: merixon

          My mother makes creamed leeks about the same as you do. It's wonderful. She does hard boil an egg and then grates that on top of the creamed leek for more color. It also adds a bit more flavor and texture as well. Your menu sounds great and I agree about the plating suggestions.

          1. re: jackie de


            the added egg sounds awesome. I'll have to try that next time.

            // Mike

          2. re: merixon

            "I just julienned half a leek." So may I assume there's some green in there? I ask because after dutifully throwing away all but the palest green parts for years, as instructed in a ll the European-style cookbooks, suddenly I'm encountering dark green included in Northern Chinese dishes, and it's delicious. Not to mention pretty!

            Yeah, I love the egg idea, too. Gosh, we're all so smart...

            1. re: Will Owen

              There sure are some green in there too. It adds some extra flavour and texture. Besides, it doesn't make sense to throw away perfectly edible parts of the leek in todays economical climate.

      2. My favorite way to plate Mash is inside the cavity of a Roasted Poblano... not much better out there.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Eat_Nopal

          That's a very interesting concept... There should be a nice contrast in taste and texture between the mash and the 'container'.

          // Mike

          1. re: merixon

            Growing up in the south, we made a well in the mashed taters, and filled it with gravy. I haven't seen it done for effect but I bet you could, and be very creative about how you arranged it. I'm seeing a mash dog-leg golf course with several ponds....Deep-fry a few dark leek pieces or chives and you could have trees.
            (Even if you find all this silly), I agree, don't cover up the leeks with the venison.

            1. re: Scargod

              Mash and gravy golf course, that almost sounds like something for my Bento's ;)

        2. This dish to me, sounds hearty and rustic. I have these wonderful glazed dishes that are oblong with a 2'' edge, each end as a bent down like thingy like a little holder to lift and such. The dish sounds spectacular, I would use a largish (individual serving) casserole like dish, place your scoop of the mash, the leeks neslted in beside the venison, and star the venison placing. The red wine from the leeks would be wonderful as exactly you say. But I think rustic, not Lennox.
          I anxiously await your recipes....

          1 Reply
          1. re: chef chicklet

            Chef Chicklet,

            Your suggestion sounds ace. The recipes, and the picture of how I plated it, will be on my blog the day after tomorrow. The 13th to be exact. Some haddock jumped the queue and will be tomorrows post ;)

            // Mike