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Subject: Potato topping - egg or no egg??
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

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From: Jen 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 00:40:57 GMT
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What are your thoughts.  Some recipes use the mash potato with egg and 
butter, some just with milk and butter, some say to brush egg  on top, some 
say to brush butter on top.  Which works best? 

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From: aem 
Date: 31 Oct 2005 17:17:31 -0800
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My first thought is, what are you trying to make?  If this is a
followup to some other postings, they didn't come through to me.    -aem

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From: Jen 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 01:24:22 GMT
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aem wrote:
> My first thought is, what are you trying to make?  If this is a
> followup to some other postings, they didn't come through to me.    -aem

No, it's just a general question.  I just thought of it because a little 
while ago someone was talking about shepherds pie and cottage pie.  Which 
I'll probably make at some time.  But I was just wondering in general

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From: aem 
Date: 31 Oct 2005 17:44:49 -0800
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Jen wrote:
> No, it's just a general question.  I just thought of it because a little
> while ago someone was talking about shepherds pie and cottage pie.  Which
> I'll probably make at some time.  But I was just wondering in general

afaik it's just a matter of appearance.  Plain mashed potatoes don't
brown much, butter browns more, butter and milk I dunno, maybe a little
more, and egg in these uses seems to help make things "golden brown."
Why "golden brown" became a desirable color to the exclusion of all
else, I haven't a clue.    -aem

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From: The Reid 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 16:15:56 +0000
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Following up to aem:
>Why "golden brown" became a desirable color to the exclusion of all
>else, I haven't a clue.  

IMHO the browning/caramalisation of the top of a
cottage/shepherds' pie adds extra texture and flavour. Any
browning of things like meat adds flavour, thats why microwaves
are such crap. 
 
Mike Reid

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From: ~patches~ 
Date: Mon, 31 Oct 2005 23:07:30 -0500
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Jen wrote:
> No, it's just a general question.  I just thought of it because a little 
> while ago someone was talking about shepherds pie and cottage pie.  Which 
> I'll probably make at some time.  But I was just wondering in general

Jen, for shepherds pie I don't use egg or milk on top.  I sprinkle on a 
light layer of bread crumbs and add a couple of dabs of butter.

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From: Ophelia 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 13:20:29 GMT
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Jen wrote:
> No, it's just a general question.  I just thought of it because a 
> little while ago someone was talking about shepherds pie and cottage 
> pie.  Which I'll probably make at some time.  But I was just wondering 
> in general

I suppose it is a matter of taste but I mash my potatoes with butter and 
a little milk and salt.  I put bits of butter on top to help it brown 
nicely.

O who is making Cottage Pie even as we speak:)) 

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From: The Reid 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 16:26:03 +0000
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Following up to Ophelia:
>O who is making Cottage Pie even as we speak:)) 

does your keyboard get messy?
 
Mike Reid

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From: Ophelia 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 16:43:36 GMT
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Mike Reid wrote:
> does your keyboard get messy?

:P

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From: The Reid 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 16:26:03 +0000
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Following up to Jen:
>while ago someone was talking about shepherds pie and cottage pie.  

You don't need anything but potato and butter for SP/CP topping
IMHO. No reason you cant add milk if the particular potatoes come
up very stiff. The top browns very well in the oven without egg.
Add cheese if you fancy it.
Theres only one hard and fast rule, if its lamb its shepherds, if
it aint its cottage. (BTW, in UK creamed corn as an ingredient
would be seen as very odd).

Citations:-
BS45823 Naming conventions, potato covered caseroles and related
matters HMSO 264963 7/6d.
 
Mike Reid

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From: Sheldon 
Date: 1 Nov 2005 08:37:09 -0800
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The Reid wrote:
> in UK creamed corn as an ingredient
> would be seen as very odd).

Um, don't you have southerner/hillybilly UKers?

Sheldon MacRedneck

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From: Doug Kanter 
Date: Tue, 01 Nov 2005 22:08:28 GMT
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Sheldon wrote:
> Um, don't you have southerner/hillybilly UKers?

The definitive topping would be ground-up Fritos and Cheez Wiz, browned with 
a handheld butane torch. 

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From: "-L." 
Date: 1 Nov 2005 08:48:23 -0800
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Jen wrote:
> What are your thoughts.  Some recipes use the mash potato with egg and
> butter, some just with milk and butter, some say to brush egg  on top, some
> say to brush butter on top.  Which works best?

Egg?  Are you serious?  Why?

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From: Stan Horwitz 
Date: Wed, 02 Nov 2005 12:47:23 -0500
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Jen wrote:
> What are your thoughts.  Some recipes use the mash potato with egg and 
> butter, some just with milk and butter, some say to brush egg  on top, some 
> say to brush butter on top.  Which works best? 

Purely a matter of personal choice. Try the different options and decide 
for yourself which topping is most enjoyable to you.


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