Mashed potatoes, the ultimate go-to side. It ranks up there with comfort foods. As a matter fact, I had a mashed potato bar along with other action stations at my wedding. The bar had butter, green onions, shredded cheese, sour cream, bacon, popcorn chicken, gravy and some other ingredients. Guests loved it!
I thought I knew how to make mashed potatoes. I was doing it all wrong. It's no wonder my mashed potatoes were always so gluey and gummy like. I would boil them until they were tender, instead they would fill with water.
Also, I would add the milk and butter straight from the fridge, so they were cold. Waterlogged potatoes combined with cold ingredients resulted in a gluey mess. Thanks to this month's issue of Bon Appetit, I learned how to make mashed potatoes the proper way and I had to share it with you all!
THE ULTIMATE MASHED POTATOES
Adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine, 11/2014
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
5 pounds yukon gold potatoes, skin-on and quartered
1 tablespoon coarse salt plus season to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
<infusing the milk>
Heat milk, unsalted butter and smashed garlic in a saucepan over medium heat.
Heat until the butter is melted; turn off heat.
<cooking the potatoes>
Add potatoes to a large pot and cover with water by 1 inch.
Add salt and bring to a boil over high heat, boil for 1 minute.
Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are very tender.
Drain, add the potatoes back to the pot.
Cook longer until dry, about a minute; turn off heat.
<assembling the dish>
Retrieve garlic from milk mixture.
Mash hot potatoes with a potato masher.
Stir in the warm milk mixture, slowly.
Combine until smooth or desired consistency.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
You may have leftover milk mixture, it really depends how smooth you want it to be.
Boiling the potatoes until done is definitely faster, but the potatoes will be full of water and you'll have gluey mash (gummy-like).
Be sure to mash the potatoes when they are hot, if you let them get cold, they will result in a gluey mash (gummy-like).
If you have a food mill or a ricer, you can pass the potatoes through it; if you don't then use a potato masher. I have a ricer, and I can't tell the difference between the two mashed potatoes. Using a masher is less work in my opinion.