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Mashed Potatoes That Even I’ll Eat

October 30, 2009

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When I was little I loved mashed potatoes.  Especially my grandpa’s mashed potatoes.  When ever I saw my grandparents I would ask him to make his mashed potatoes.  I would make a perfectly symmetrical well in the middle, fill it just to the top with gravy, and then fold the potatoes over the gravy so it was invisible.  Those were the days…

Then I lived in Eastern Europe for two years and potatoes became the enemy.  Potatoes are the Hordak to my She-Ra.  If you don’t understand, then you weren’t born in the 1980’s, which is too bad because She-Ra was the best cartoon ever.

Getting back to the mashed potatoes.  As I mentioned in my post yesterday, Nate requested mashed potatoes to go with the fried chicken for his birthday.  Besides french fries, the only way I really like potatoes is if you add a bunch of stuff to them and they don’t taste like potatoes anymore.   The thought of plain old boring boiled potatoes brings back bad memories and makes me want to curl up in a ball and cry.

You may think I’m kidding, but I’m not.

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[Ewww.  That’s not supposed to be there.  Why must the produce at Shopper’s be of such dubious quality?]

There are all different kinds of things that make every person’s mashed potato recipe “the very best” as far as they are concerned.  For instance, The Pioneer Woman (who is hilarious and takes good pictures of horses) adds cream cheese to her mashed potatoes.  If you took a look at the link you’ll also see she adds 2 (that’s right, count ’em) sticks of butter.   I added about two tablespoons of butter.   Just a little gave the potatoes a subtle buttery flavor, and I didn’t feel guilty, which I undoubtedly would have if I’d used two whomping sticks.  You could also use Yukon gold potatoes, which have a natural buttery flavor, and that would probably be even better…. I’ll have to try that for Thanksgiving. 

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As a side note, why do all the good foods have to be unhealthy?  Why can’t brocoli be loaded with calories and badness, and why can’t butter be calorie-free with numerous health benefits?  Life just isn’t fair.

Next to I added this to my mashed potatoes:

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That’s what it looked like before it spend an hour in the oven.  See the olive oil drizzled on top?  That part’s key, right there.

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That is what it looked like afterwards.  And, my oh my, did it smell amazing.  In retrospect I should have done two heads of garlic, but what you see is what you get.  When roasting garlic it is very important to not under roast it.  If you do that whatever you add it too will taste like raw garlic and be gross.  I roasted mine at  400F for about an hour, maybe a little more.  Then you can just squeeze the garlic out and add it to whatever you’re cooking!  Or you can eat it straight.  Whatever suits your fancy.

I also added some half and half , salt and pepper.  By now these potatoes were tasting pretty dang good.  However, there is one thing that makes everything taste better.  If you know me and Nate then you probably know what I’m talking about.

Cheese, people.

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We had a hunk of sharp cheddar in the fridge, and that did the trick. You want to be careful not to stir the potatoes too much after you add the cheese, because then it will disintegrate into the potatoes and there won’t be any chunks.  The chunks are the best part. 

Writing this post has made me hungry.  So hungry, in fact, my stomach is rumbling.  That’s how good these mashed potatoes are. 

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Really Yummy Mashed Potatoes

(Makes enough for two hungry people with some left over)

3 large potatoes

2 tbsp butter

1/4 cup half and half (or you could use cream or milk)

1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

2 roasted heads of garlic

Peel and quarter the potatoes.  Boil until tender.  Remove from water and add in butter, salt, pepper and half and half.  Mash the potatoes.  Add in the roasted garlic and stir into the potatoes (don’t mash because then you won’t get chunks.  Chunks are good).  Then add in the cheese and stir again.  Taste as you go and add in more salt/pepper/butter/milk as needed.

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