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Nov 24, 2004 10:25 PM

flavored mashed potatoes

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I'd like to jazz up the mashed potatoes this year a bit....maybe garlic, or onion....nothing too fancy - my family likes super-simple food - as in, if it was up to them, I wouldnt even use salt and pepper...But it's up to me, so I want flavor. What's your favorite mashed potato variations?

If using garlic - whats the best time to add it? If I want onion, what the best way to do them - caramelized? fried? I'm not big on rosemary. What else can I use?

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  1. Sour cream and grated Romano cheese are my mashed potato secret.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Chino Wayne

      Right on the $ - Sour cream, butter, some parm cheese...I also add some horseradish and fresh parsly for color. How bad can that all be?

      Other possibilities include evaporated milk and roasted garlic as previously mentioned. I've also used goat cheese, Boursin cheese and a bit of sage. Never Rosemary...too strong. Great on roasted potatoes though.

      One recipe you might like is to take well baked Idaho potatoes and slice them up break them up in odd sized pieces, leaving the skins on, and then add salt, lots of melted butter, cracked pepper, a bit of crushed red pepper and either fresh or dried sage...not too much sage. Toss the whole thing up good.

      The hard exterior skin on the well done baked potatoes combined with the soft and butter laden flesh of the potato flesh makes for a great texture combo. I have gotten lots of complements on this one. Made it up myself.

    2. I like to add buttermilk for a little tang and chives.

      1. We like to bake large potatoes first, then cut them in half. Then scoop out the potatoes and mash them adding cream/half and half, real bacon bites, chopped green onion, mixed cheese and top with kosher salt. Then we replace the mashed the potatoes in the half shell and rebake under a boiler for ten minutes or so then serve. If you like a like more favor you can top the potatoe with a little cheese and more green onion.

        Not exactly simple mahsed pototoes but is a nice way to kick up a meal.

        In fact we just finish doing fifteen potatoes (30 pieces) for tomorrow night dinner. This can be done ahead of time.

        1. A little horseradish is heavenly in mashed potatoes.

          On Al Roker's Thanksgiving special last night, a woman mixed turnips with her mashed potatoes, which I thought might be interesting.

          My sister uses green chile sour cream dip in her potatoes, and they are to die for. But unless you live in New Mexico, it may be hard to find that particular dip. It's also pretty hot, so your family may not be too crazy about it, anyway. You could use a small can of chopped green chile (I've seen Ortega brand outside of the southwest, it's VERY mild) and plain sour cream instead.

          5 Replies
          1. re: gina

            I agree with the just add some prepared horseradish (maybe a tablespoon or so) into your regular mashed potatoes...really delish!

            1. re: gina

              Hi Gina:

              My wife and I are going to New Mexico and Arizona this coming Spring. I got together some hopefully great restaurants in all the cities we'll be visiting.

              One thing I did not want to ask the SW Hounds is for an explanation of green chili sauce. Didn't want to sound too dumb.

              There's a famous place we'll be going to for their green chili cheeseburgers in Sante Fe and I was just wondering, if you could explain, sort of, what exactly does green chilis taste like? How does that taste with a burger? It looked fantastic on

              We normally do not like Mexican food, but then, I never really had Mexican food...Just the Americanized stuff. The only thing I had that I absolutely loved that was real Mexican was the green tomatillo (?) salsa. That was great.

              1. re: Chuck


                I am are going to the home of the country's best green chile.

                Especially in New Mexico, you will see "green chile" and "green chiles" available everywhere, as their own dishes, or on top of anything and everything. Even a lot of fast-food joints offer "green chile" as a topping for, say, a cheeseburger.

                There are two basic meanings/forms to "green chile."

                One meaning is simply a strip of roasted green chile pepper, probably Anaheim or maybe something a little hotter. This is what you can order on your burger or whatever, and it also shows up all over the place -- in omelets, enchiladas, fancy breakfast preparations, soups, etc.

                The other, more delicious meaning of "green chile" is the classic pork/tomatillo/chile stew. This too is ubiquitous, and you can get your burrito smothered in it, or your omelet made with it, to name only two ways it may land on your plate. Of course you can simply order a "bowl of green" to be enjoyed with tortillas and beans and rice, and (it's been a while since I've been in the southwest) I am sure it has been morphed into all sorts of new and fusion-style dishes.

                Two things to keep in mind: one, make sure you know which form of green chile you're getting--so you don't get a burger smothered in stew when you're expecting just a slice of roasted pepper on top (although either would be good!). Two, be aware that green chile (stew) can range from chicken-soup-mild to insanely hot and spicy. Usually the restaurant will advertise their intent clearly, but you can always ask.

                Beyond these two culinary foundations, the words "green" and "chile" show up next to each other for all sorts of reasons. You'll run into green salsas both hot and mild, and other types of sauce made with green chiles or tomatillos or both.


                1. re: Chuck

                  Don't worry about asking SW hounds about green chile--New Mexicans love talking about it! They will be able to give you the latest update on who has the hottest/best stuff.

                  Also note, Mexican and New Mexican cuisines are considered to be different. A big difference is the type of chile used, since there are certain types native to Mexico and others to New Mexico.

                2. re: gina

                  A dash of horseradish coupled with Gouda cheese is heavenly-er... actually the secret to the Cheesecake Factory's potatoes along with cream and butter.

                3. When I make garlic mashed potatoes, I usually boil garlic cloves along w/ the potatoes and then mash it with the potatoes once they are peeled. I usually add about a cup of milk or buttermilk to the cooking water. I'm a garlic lover, so I'll add about one clove/potato. For your family, you might add less. I find that roasted garlic is too caramelized in flavor and will easily overpower a Russet.

                  Other additions: butter; smooth dairy item (cream cheese, sour cream, OR mascarpone cheese; liquid (milk, cream, and/or broth); and either snipped chives or scallions. Of course, lots of salt and some pepper.

                  Tips: don't overwork the potatoes when you add the ingredients, otherwise you'll end up w/ a gluey mash; heat up the dairy and liquid ingredients first so they meld w/ the potatoes more easily.