Mashed potatoes are a mainstay of Thanksgiving dinner. Born from the need of a potato dish that could be made without an oven (occupied by the roasting turkey), mashed potatoes have grown into one of the most varied and diverse of all thanksgiving dishes.Why just take a look at some of my personal favorite twists on mash:
Feel free to experiment on the dish with your own flavors, potatoes are an incredibly complimentary food and your options are as limitless as their number of uses. But, at least to me, nothing beats good old-fashioned mashed potatoes topped with some piping hot gravy.
Classic Mashed Potatoes
- 2-3lbs Russet potatoes
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 cup Heavy cream
- Chives for garnish
- Potato masher
- Peel and chop your potatoes and then place them in a pot of cold water.
Russets are excellent for this dish because of their starchiness which is essential to fluffiness and creaminess of the dish. Yukon golds work equally well. Avoid waxy red and white potatoes which can be difficult to smooth out.
- Transfer the pot to the stove top and bring it up to a boil.
A classic mistake is to add the potatoes into water already boiling. While this technique is useful for quick cooking vegetables, it will lead to unevenly cooked potatoes.
- Boil the potatoes until they are tender enough to be pierced with a spoon or butterknife. This will take about 15 minutes.
- Drain your potatoes and return them to the pot. Then mash them with the potato masher. It is best to work with the potatoes while they are still hot but take care not to burn yourself!
Don’t bother with the food processor or blender for this step. Appliances like these will overwork your potatoes and lead to gummy or gluey results.
- Add in the heavy cream and whisk it into the the mixture. Then rapidly whisk together until smooth and luscious. Finally, mince the chives and sprinkle on top for a splash of color and pleasant mild onion flavor.
You can also make this dish using chicken or vegetable stock in place of the cream if you have vegan or lactose-intolerant guests. In this case, the dish must be served immediately to prevent it from separating.