Although an interesting thought, this is not a recipe idea. On a stormy summer morning illuminated by lightning and serenaded by thunder, a recently photographed meerkat entered my stream of consciousness. As a balding man I am in awe of the magnifying mirror in our bathroom. The follicular contrariness in the ageing male of homo erectus is just unfair. A shiny pate coupled with a sebaceous system that has decided to retire to my ears and nose does little to cheer me as I pass the very sharp blade of a razor across the exposed areas of my face in the daily ritual of removing misguided hair. It was at that point that the nonchalance of the meerkat came to mind. He’s thrown away the tweezers and the razor and he’s looking cool. All the world loves a meerkat, but it is, without doubt, an extreme look. Any way, I decided not to perch on a wall looking cute and carried on shaving and plucking whilst thunder boomed and lightning lightened in an atmosphere that could have been a scene from “Apocalypse Now”, had Wagner been playing, as the Ventaxia in the bathroom was making a good fist of imitating a helicopter gunship, although I must confess that I prefer the smell of coffee to napalm in the morning. And then, as if by agic, or more likely by magic, at that portentous moment in time my mind was filled with mashed potato. Earlier that morning, before hair awareness, I had read a post from Joshua Fagans in which he extolled the virtues of the “mouli legumes” for making mashed potato. I am of the opinion that by the time the potatoes have passed through that “mouli” baby food mill we are a long past “mashed” and have arrived at wallpaper paste, or a potentially useful glue. There is a strong body of cool chefs, like Joel Robuchon, who advocate the mouli but I am of that elite body, the “potato ricer” faction. For me the route to this potato nirvana passes through the perforations of the potato ricer. Firstly, choose good potatoes and boil them in their skins, from cold, in salted water. Drain and skin them while still warm and then pass them through a potato ricer into a mixing bowl. I then add the yolk of good egg, salt, white pepper, a large knob of unsalted butter, a splash of milk and a large tablespoon of creme fraiche. Mix gently, but thoroughly, with a rubber spatula. This fabulousness can then be gently heated in pan before serving. Finally, back to the meerkats. I really should stress that it’s not a good idea to adopt that look- listen to me, it’s not clever and it’s not big but, on the other hand it is quite funny.