Thursday, September 16, 2010

Double Take: Loaded Garlic Smashed Potatoes

This recipe looked super tasty. It also looked like it fed a small army! I decided to cut it down and modify it a bit. Then I paired it with some fried chicken, peas, and cardamom rolls. Due to my ever growing consciousness of salt and the presence of high blood pressure in my family, I opted to reduce the salt...perhaps too much. Also, due to my overwhelming hunger, I skipped baking it in the oven for 10 minutes. I just couldn't wait.

Loaded Garlic Smashed Potatoes (slightly adapted from Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook)

2 garlic bulbs
1/2 Tbsp olive oil
3 bacon slices
1/2 bunch of green onions, chopped
2 lbs red potatoes
1 (8 oz) container of sour cream
3/4 c. (3 oz) shredded cheddar cheese, divided into 1/2 c. and 1/4 c.
1.5 Tbsp butter (or just go for 2 Tbsp to keep it simple)
1/8 c. milk
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp of pepper
Garnish : more chopped green onions

1. Cut off the pointed end of the garlic. Place the garlic in aluminum foil and drizzle with olive oil. Fold the foil to close up the garlic and place in an oven at 425 F for 40 minutes. Cool. Squeeze the pulp from the garlic and set aside. (Impatient person: Do let the garlic cool at least 5 minutes. Grab a pair of nitrile gloves and squeeze the pulp from the garlic to prevent having burnt, garlic smelling fingers.)

2. Cook the bacon in a skillet on medium heat until crisp. Cook it til its your desire doneness. I prefer it to be a deepened red color but not over done to the point of being brittle and shattering in my mouth..ugh. Place the bacon on paper towels when done to absorb some grease. Don't pitch your grease!

3. Keep 2 Tbsp of bacon grease in the skillet. Place the rest of the grease in your bacon jar (...if you have one. If you don't have one, start one!)

4. Crumble the bacon and place it back in the skillet with the green onions and cook 1 minutes until the onions are tender. Set aside the bacon and onions. (I put them in a samll bowl to save stove space.

5. Place a pot of salted water on the stove to reach a boil. While the water heats, peel potatoes...or at least wash them well and slice them into 1/4" pieces. Cook potatoes in boiling salted water for 15-20 minutes, until they become tender. Drain and place back in your warm pot.

6. Add pulp from roasted garlic, bacon/green onion mixture, sour cream, 1/2 c. cheese, butter, milk, salt and pepper.

7. Mash with a spoon, fork,. potato masher, or even a hand mixer. (Note: Some people insist on potatoes being mashed rather than whipped. Technically, the hand mixture constitutes whipping. I say, eat them how you like them. If you want them a little chunky, grab a big fork or a potato masher. That's what I did. However for those that prefer the whipped version, go for it. The most important part is that you like it!)

At this point I ate them. The actual recipe continues....

8. Spoon the potatoes into a lightly greased 8x8 pan. Sprinkle with 1/4 c. cheese and bake at 350 F for 10 minutes. Garnish with green onions if desired. (I think this would've helped the flavors meld more but I could not force myself to wait any longer!)

Review: I went lighter on the salt than I have listed above. That was an error. Cooking salt in is always going to add more flavor than if you have to add more later. I recommend not messing with the salt above. In the recipe above, I also increased the garlic from the original recipe. The flavor of the garlic was too light to be called loaded garlic smashed potatoes as written. Loaded mashed potatoes would've been a better title. Either way, it was pretty good. It still made 6 servings but its a bit challenging to reduce to a smaller portion than that. I think the mixture would make some awesome potato cakes. Unfortunately, I didn't get a chance to try that out due to the hecticness of life.

Final Decision:
Ruthann...not bad but could use some more flavor, especially garlic. Might've had more flavor melding if it had been baked. (She was hungry too though so we agreed to dig into them.)
Me: Where's the garlic? (The above recipe compensates for the lack of garlic flavor by doubling the garlic. :) )
We'd make it again with more garlic but there are probably better mashed potato recipes out there. I really think these would make awesome potato cakes though!

See what Mel thought by checking out Fabulously Fun Food!


  1. Same recipe, completely different conclusions. :) That's why I like the Double Takes!

  2. oh great recipe and adore the halibut one, thanks so much for commenting on my blog, great to meet another winston food blogger we should meet one day
    sorry don't know about the orange water but Om Indian grocery probably has rose water