Duchess Potatoes

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Duchess potatoes are a French dish and are basically fancy mashed potatoes, beautifully presented and coated in a buttery wash that goes lovely and golden once baked. It’s a little more effort than blobbing on some mash, but it’s a great way to elevate your dinner. I also love the retro-ness of a duchess potato so if you’re really into 1970s dinner parties, you absolutely have to include these alongside a prawn cocktail and beef stroganoff. Then finish it off with a snowball cocktail for good measure. 

I’ve recently become a little obsessed with cookbooks from the 1960s and 1970s because the recipes are absolutely wild, like jellied veal rings and ham and bananas hollandaise?! I won’t even get started on the presentation of the food but I 100% need to make all of these. Please send me more suggestions, particularly potato based recipes.

To get that iconic duchess look, you pipe individual portions of the potato mixture into decorative swirls using a star nozzle and piping bag. Using a star shaped nozzle means there’s more surface area so when these babies go into the oven, you get even more golden brown bits on top. It’s also important you have a super smooth mash so you don’t get lots of lumpy bits, which can be achieved by using a sieve or potato ricer when mashing your spuds instead of a traditional potato masher. To master classic mash, check out my recipe here. 

What if I don’t have a piping bag? 

Don’t worry if you don’t have a piping bag and nozzle because there are ways to get around this. They may not look quite as professional but we can get creative! Either grab a freezer bag and cut the corner off, or you can avoid the piping part altogether and spread your mash mixture into an ovenproof dish and create peaks, swirls or whatever you fancy on the top using a fork. 

For a bit of extra browning, you can also brush with an egg wash but this is completely optional.



metric imperial
  • 14oz potatoes
  • 400g maris piper potatoes
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg
  • 1oz butter (+ extra to wash with)
  • 30g butter (+ extra to wash with)
  • 3 tbsp whole milk
  • 3 tbsp whole milk
  • 2oz Parmesan
  • 50g Parmesan
  • Touch of nutmeg
  • Touch of nutmeg


  1. Peel and chop your potatoes. Get the spuds into salted cold water and get them on to boil.
  2. Once cooked, drain them off and pass through a potato ricer or a sieve. This will ensure the smoothest mash. You can use a potato ricer if you have one.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.
  4. Add the butter, milk, Parmesan, pinch of salt, egg and nutmeg to a pan to warm up, then add your tatties and mix until combined. Once mixed, place in a piping bag with a star nozzle.
  5. Melt some extra butter. Pipe your potato mixture onto a lined tray and gently pour on the melted butter.
  6. Bake in the oven for 15-20 mins or until golden. Enjoy!