My brother’s mother-in-law, Theresa McMullen (aka: Nan, short for Nana), was a great cook and one of her specialties was this mashed potato recipe.
It’s good for special occasions, like Thanksgiving, and is guaranteed to have your guests asking for more. If they also ask for the recipe, tell them they can find it here on Rootsliving.
The recipe is a fairly easy one to follow. A simplified explanation is you make mashed potatoes and then add sour cream and cream cheese to them and bake them until they’re bubbly and hot.
Choosing Your Potatoes
The best potatoes to use are high in starch content, which produces fluffy, and not runny, mashed potatoes. This time I used a combination of yellow Yukons and some Russets (white). The Yukons have a little less starch but add a buttery flavor.
To peel the potatoes, I recommend using a small paring knife or a steak knife with a good handle. Try to get as close to the skin as you can but don’t worry too much about it. If you end up cutting off and throwing out some of the potato, who cares? You’ll get better at this the more you do it.
When boiling the potatoes, I always add a bay leaf and sometime even a peeled onion cut into halves or quarters. And I also boil them in a large pasta pot with a colander insert. This makes it easy to get the potatoes out of the boiling water without any mishaps.
The most important tip I can give you is to mash the potatoes by using a ricer. A ricer is a metal contraption that you put a handful of potatoes in at a time and then squeeze it shut so that the potatoes are forced to push through small drain holes and into a bowl.
My mother always used a ricer when making mashed potatoes, so I never gave this a second thought. This prevents lumps. And no one likes lumpy mashed potatoes.
So how many calories are in this dish? Probably a million, but hey, we’re not eating them every week. These are good a few times a year, on special occasions.
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Nan's (decadent) Mashed Potatoes
This takes a little time but it's easy to make. You basically make mashed potatoes and then add a few ingredients to them before baking.
- Potatoes (8 pounds)
- Bay Leaf (1)
- Garlic powder (just a dash)
- Cream Cheese (1 8 oz package)
- Sour Cream (1 16 oz container)
- Salt, pepper (to taste)
- Paprika (enough to sprinkle on top)
- Butter (enough to grease a baking dish and a few slabs to put on top)
- Step 1 Boil potatoes with bay leaf until tender. And then mash. I always mash potatoes through a ricer, which prevents lumps.
- Step 2 Add salt and pepper and garlic powder.
- Step 3 Beat in the cream cheese and sour cream. I use a hand-held electric beater until the potatoes are smooth and creamy.
- Step 4 Put potatoes in baking dish that has been greased with butter. Smooth top and dab with butter and sprinkle with paprika.
- Step 5 Bake in a 350-degree oven until hot and bubbly.