I always try to think of a good story, or memory, or interesting connection that relates my life to the recipe I’m posting. Writing about food is really writing about so much more. When you write about chocolate chip cookies, you could also be revealing little bits and pieces of yourself: about your childhood, relationship with your family, food allergies, a break-up, or really anything!
Honestly though, this post came straight from my desire to eat all things roasted garlic flavored and the fact that mashed potatoes are delicious. I just can’t even pretend that these taters are more meaningful than yet another vehicle for the soft, buttery sweetness of roasted garlic. Ever since I made hummus last week, I’ve been day dreaming about what else I can infuse with it.
I learned the easiest way to roast it from Anna at Cruncy Creamy Sweet. She made a great tutorial about how to roast several heads of garlic at a time, so you can have them ready to go whenever you want. Check it out for yourself here! In the tutorial, she explains (with pictures) how easy it is to cut the tops off, drizzle with olive oil, wrap in foil, and roast in the oven.
With all of the other food prep going on in your holiday kitchen, one more step to roast the garlic may seem like too much, but, there is inevitably going to be something that goes in the oven that the garlic heads can ride along with. Mashed potatoes don’t take very long to throw together, so earlier in the day, you can just toss the garlic heads in the oven at the same time with, say, the green bean casserole, or the stuffing, or the pie, or the sweet potatoes (I’m ready for the big meal, in case you couldn’t tell)!
You can garnish with chives, or mix them straight in! It just looks nice to at least have a nod to something fresh and green on the holiday table, right?
Let’s talk about mashed potato texture. I like mine super creamy. A few little chunks are Ok, but super cream can turn into gummy potatoes quickly, If you over mix them, and that makes me sad. There’s a few ways to make sure that you don’t over-mix:
- Mash by hand
- Use a ricer
- Mix on lowest setting with a hand mixer!
I use the 3rd option, because I don’t have the patience to mash by hand (and it’s so hard to get them creamy) and I don’t have a ricer. A ricer is probably the best option, but I don’t make mashed potatoes that often, and I have a hard time buying tools that I’ll only use once or twice a year!
You will get creamy potatoes by using the hand mixer, and keeping it on the lowest setting will allow you to tell when it’s done sooner, and help you not take it to that gummy point of no return!
It’s also important to make sure that the potatoes are well drained. Extra water can also cause gummy texture.
I love that everyone in my family has a super strong opinion about what their favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner is. I, personally, love the stuffing! I love it, and I want it to be INSIDE the turkey. I know there’s a bunch of controversy about how dangerous that is, but my mom and grandma have made it like that every year, and nobody has died yet. (Ok, maybe I’m talking a little bit about my family…hah!)
Anyway, the point is, even though only one of my brothers claims mashed potatoes as their absolute favorite part of the meal, we all love them, and Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same without them.
This recipe is enough for one family of 5, so if you have a big family, double, or triple it!
For the tutorial on how to roast the garlic to go Crunchy Creamy Sweet!
What’s your favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner?
- 3 lbs Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters
- 4 cloves roasted garlic
- 1 cup half and half
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- 4 tablespoon butter
- Add to a large pot all potatoes. Fill with water until the water level is 3 or 4 inches above potatoes.
- Put the pot over high heat and allow to come to a rolling boil. Boil until potatoes are fork tender, about 20 mins.
- Drain potatoes well (too much water left in mashed potatoes can make them gummy)
- Add to a medium bowl, cooked potatoes, garlic cloves, butter, salt and pepper.
- With hand mixer on lowest speed, mix potatoes and add-ins together until the biggest chunks are about 1" in diameter.
- Slowly drizzle half & half into potatoes while continuing to mix on low speed. Allow the potatoes to have a few small chunks in them so they don't get over-mixed.
- OPTIONAL: garnish with a pat of butter and chives.
*Nutrition information is for roughly 3/4 cup mashed potatoes*