Garlic Mashed Potatoes

22 cloves of garlic sounds more like a recipe to keep vampires at bay, than something to make for anyone whom you might think about kissing within the next 7 days. But don’t fear, the slow-roasting of the garlic mellows the edge and deepens the flavor. The garlic is not overpowering; rather it’s nicely balanced and adds interest to an otherwise plain side-dish. I made these potatoes last week as part of my Bistro Dinner; which consisted of Salmon Cakes with Lemon-Herb Tartar Sauce and these Garlic Mashed Potatoes. Overall, the meal was a big hit; and these potatoes were a 4-star side dish.

Nice flavor adds interest of mashed potatos

Nice flavor adds interest of mashed potatoes

Rating: 4 stars.
Cost: $1.50.
How much work? Low/Medium.
How big of a mess? Medium.
Started: 5:15 PM.  Ready: 6:00 PM.

Chris Kimball’s original Garlic Mashed Potatoes is here. My descriptions of how I prepare it are given below:

22 small-to-medium-sized cloves garlic (3 ounces; 2 medium heads garlic)
2 pounds potatoes
8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick)
1 cup half-and-half, (warm)
1-1/2 teaspoons table salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

  1. Leaving the skins on the garlic cloves, and avoiding any large cloves, put the garlic in a small, covered skillet and toast over the lowest possible burner for 22 minutes, shaking the pan every few minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, scrub the potatoes and put the whole, unpeeled potatoes in a large saucepan. Cover with 1″ of water, and bring to a boil over high burner. Turn down burner to medium/low and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes.
  3. Garlic will be done when they have dark brown spots and the cloves are somewhat softened. Cover skillet and allow to sit off-heat in skillet for 15 to 20 minutes more until they fully soften.
  4. Use a paring knife to cut off the woody end and peel the garlic cloves. Set aside.Potatoes will be done when a paring knife meets very little resistance. Drain potatoes.
  5. Cut stick of butter into 8 pieces and add to empty, and still hot, saucepan, allowing the butter to fully melt.
  6. Use a fork to spear potatoes and peel using a paring knife. Processing potatoes in batches, cut the potatoes into big chunks as necessary to fit into the hopper of a ricer or food mill. Add peeled potatoes into ricer and process, emptying back into large saucepan with melted butter. Also process the peeled garlic cloves.
  7. Use a wooden spoon to combine the half-and-half, and 1-1/2 teaspoons table salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper. Serve immediately.
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