I dream about Yew’s Chef Grant Macdonald

Yew's delicious smoked mashed potatoes (photo: S. Gemma of Vancouver Bites!)

Confession time: I dream about Grant Macdonald, Chef at Yew Restaurant at Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver.

OK, I don’t actually dream about Grant specifically—though he is a really charming guy—but rather his silky-smooth, smoked mashed potatoes. This $5 side dish at Yew Restaurant and Bar has literally called to me in the night, drawing me to it. Appetizers, mains and desserts become secondary to their delight. When I asked Chef Grant how he does them, he smiled, walked away, and handed me the recipe. See? Love him.

Yew’s Smoked Mashed Potatoes Recipe:

2 lbs Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into eighths
Applewood chips and a smoker
1 cup milk (approximately), heated
8 to 16 oz unsalted butter, cubed
Salt to taste

Place the potato cubes in a large pot with a steamer tray. Add enough water to steam (but not boil), cover with a lid and cook until fork-tender. Transfer potatoes to smoker and cold smoke according to machine’s instructions. Allow potatoes to smoke for 2 hours. Transfer potatoes back to steamer and reheat for 1 minute. Pass potatoes and cubed butter through a ricer or food mill. Add heated milk. Salt to taste. Be sure to re-pass the smoked potato purée through a fine sieve, if needed, to remove any lumps. The smoked potato purée should be soft and pillowy, forming a peak that just folds over onto the plate. The result is a rich and decadent potato purée. (Makes 4 to 6 servings)

Awesome, right? Sweet dreams!

NOTE: If you don’t have access to a smoker, or the time or patience, you can cheat the above recipe with a few good dashes of a quality liquid smoke product. The key is to find one without any artificial flavored or preservatives (just hardwood smoke and water) and not to add too much at once. I use a hickory flavoured product by Encore called “Woodland”. Works great in a pinch!


2 Responses to “I dream about Yew’s Chef Grant Macdonald”

  1. Posted on June 1st, 2011

    wow that sounds good.

  2. Posted on June 23rd, 2011

    Hmmm… Because I can’t eat potatoes and this made me drool all over myself,I’m going to try it with butternut squash. Thanks Mark…and Grant!

Leave a Reply

If so desired you may use HTML in your comments. Links, bold/strong and emphasis/italics tags are all accepted! However more than one link will flag you as spam so write carefully!

Our Sponsors

These are our friends, neighbours and some of the best food resources around. They support us. We support them. You should too.