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Mashed Potatoes with Bacon and Chives

For many American families, Thanksgiving dinner would not be complete without a big bowl of mashed potatoes on the table. Our recipe calls for russets, which have a light, fluffy texture and mellow flavor. For a delicious variation, try Yukon Golds, which boast a naturally rich, buttery taste. Or choose a local variety from your farmers’ market.

Ingredients:

  • 5 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 3 lb. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 Tbs. kosher salt, plus more, to taste
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 3 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into 3 pieces
  • 3 Tbs. minced fresh chives
  • 8 oz. bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces and cooked until crispy
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 350°F.

Place the garlic cloves on a piece of aluminum foil and drizzle with the olive oil. Fold over the foil to enclose the garlic and roast for about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven. When the cloves are cool enough to handle, peel them and mince enough garlic to measure 1 Tbs. Reserve any remaining garlic for another use.

Meanwhile, put the potatoes in a large pot. Add the 1 Tbs. salt and enough water to cover the potatoes by 3 inches. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the potatoes are tender when pierced, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain well in a colander.

Set the pot over low heat, add the half-and-half, butter and the 1 Tbs. roasted garlic and whisk until the butter melts. Set a potato ricer over the pot and pass the potatoes through in batches. Using a silicone spatula, fold the potatoes into the liquid until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in the chives and bacon, and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the potatoes to a warmed serving bowl and serve immediately. Serves 8.

Williams-Sonoma Kitchen.