I have a Thanksgiving confession: I could do without the turkey. It’s not that I don’t like turkey, because I do enjoy it. But I’d rather fill my plate with the side dishes. I just love stuffing, green bean casserole, and mashed potatoes!
We are not hosting Thanksgiving dinner this year, so we are only providing one dish. I asked Robbie which of my classic Thanksgiving dishes he wanted me to make, and he requested my mashed potatoes. My goal when making mashed potatoes is to make them so flavorful that no butter or gravy is needed.
These really are Thanksgiving mashed potatoes and not everyday mashed potatoes. A lot of the flavor comes from butter, cream cheese, and sour cream, and never the low-fat or fat-free versions. And I never add milk. Yummy, but not the healthiest.
I always use Russets. Not only are they the cheapest potatoes, but the mealiness produces a great texture in the finished product. I leave the skins on (adds a little more nutritive value), but feel free to peel them.
If I plan ahead, I like to use roasted garlic. If I don’t have any garlic roasted ahead of time, I use fresh garlic. Sometimes when I’m really pressed for time or out of fresh garlic, I use garlic powder.
Fresh chives definitely contribute better flavor than dried chives, but they are expensive. I have garlic chives growing in my herb garden so I just go out and snip them fresh.
Regardless of what kind of garlic or chives you use, the absolute key to really good mashed potatoes is to taste as you go. It actually kind of frightens me to put this recipe in writing, because I always make my mashed potatoes by the taste-and-adjust method. And remember, you can always add more, you can’t take away, so start out conservatively and add in small increments.
Thanksgiving Mashed Potatoes
½ c. butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
about ½ c. sour cream
about 4 cloves fresh garlic, minced, or 6 large cloves roasted garlic, or ½ Tbsp. garlic powder
½ Tbsp. salt, more or less to taste
½ tsp. pepper, more or less to taste
1-2 Tbsp. chives
Wash and peel potatoes if desired. Cut potatoes into chunks. Boil until tender; drain. Place butter and cream cheese in same pot while it is still hot. Pour potatoes back into pot.
Add sour cream, garlic, salt, and pepper. Mash with potato masher until desired texture.
Stir in chives. Taste and make necessary adjustments, adding more sour cream for a thinner consistency.