Recipe and photo by Erika Bruce
of Cook's Illustrated magazine, November/December 2004.
What are smashed potatoes? They are like mashed
potatoes, but the potatoes are not peeled and they are mashed only very lightly.
They are kind of a lazy way to make mashed potatoes! Lazy way or not, they are
very delicious! Smashing them is also an excellent way to get butter and herbs
into all of the nooks and crannies of the potato, while still retaining the
smashed potato recipe and dinner menu were generously shared with my by Linda Sandberg of
Newberg, OR. Linda belongs to a Gourmet Dinner Group that delights in making
wonderful foods that they share together.
A Night of Comfort (Updated Comfort Food Dinner)
which includes this recipe.
Potato Hints, Tips,
History of Potatoes
and more great
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 45 min
2 pounds Red Bliss potatoes (about 2 inches in diameter), unpeeled and scrubbed*
1 bay leaf
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and warm
1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
* New potatoes or
Yukon Gold potatoes may be substituted, but the red skins of the Red Bliss
potatoes give a wonderful contrast. Try to purchase potato of equal size. If
only large potatoes are available, increase the cooking time by approximately 10
In a large pot, add whole potatoes
and cover with 1-inch cold water; add 1 teaspoon salt and the bay leaf. Bring
just to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer gently
until a paring knife can be inserted into the potatoes with no resistance,
approximately 35 to 45 minutes. Remove from heat.
Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking
water and set aside. Then drain potatoes of remaining water; discard the water
and bay leaf. Return cooked potatoes to the pot and allow potatoes to stay in
the pot, uncovered, until surfaces are dry, about 5 minutes.
While potatoes are drying, whisk
the melted butter and softened cream cheese in a medium bowl until smooth and
fully incorporated. Add the 1/4 cup of the reserved cooking water, 1/2 teaspoon
pepper, chives (if using), and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Using a rubber spatula or back
of a wood spoon, smash potatoes just enough to break the skins. Fold in the
butter/cream cheese mixture until most of the liquid has been absorbed and
chunks of potatoes remain. NOTE: Add more reserved cooking
water if needed, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the potatoes are slightly looser
than desired. The potatoes will thicken slightly with standing. Adjust
salt and pepper, if desired.
Place in a serving bowl and serve
Makes 4 to 6 servings.