Smooth & Creamy Mashed Potatoes
Who doesn’t love mashed potatoes? Thanksgiving and Christmas Dinner were always my favorite “eating” holidays growing up because I knew we would have homemade mashed potatoes and gravy. The other 363 days of the year, the beloved starch came from a cardboard box in the form of flakes. Not that there’s anything wrong with that (said no Foodie ever)! Over the years, I’ve played with numerous recipes for mashed potatoes, making most of it up as I went along and along. Finally, I settled on this basic recipe. Once mixed, I encourage you to add your special flare to the dish. Roasted garlic and fennel is a good place to start.
5 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes (In my humble opinion, these are the best potatoes for mashing)
1 stick Butter (less 1 tbsp) softened — Yes, real butter, not margarine.
8 oz Cream Cheese, Softened
3/4 cup heavy cream (or half and half)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Peel and cut the potatoes into pieces approximately the same size. Bring a large pot of water to a simmer and add the potatoes. Bring to a boil and cook for 30 to 35 minutes (the potatoes should just about fall apart when pierced with a fork).
Drain the potatoes in a colander and return to the pot. Return the pot to the stove and mash the potatoes over low heat, allowing all the steam to escape. This is one of the secrets to smooth potatoes.
Turn off the stove and add 1 stick of butter (less 1 tbsp), the cream cheese and the heavy cream or half and half. Continue mashing like a mad woman (or man) until you’ve created a bowl of velvety creaminess.
Place potatoes in a baking dish sprayed lightly with cooking spray. Throw a few pats of butter over the top of the potatoes and place them in a 350 oven and heat until butter is melted and potatoes are warmed through. Approximately 20 minutes.
Note: You can make this dish a couple days in advance, cover and refrigerate. Remove from fridge 2 to 3 hours before serving time. Bake in a 350 oven for about 20 to 30 minutes or until warmed through.