Dan Pelosi’s Mashed Potatoes Are Cheesy, Garlicky, Herby Heaven

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When there’s mashed potatoes on the dinner table, this is the dish I’ll instinctively gravitate toward — having everyone dive into the main meat and other sides as I build my plate with a few large scoops of the buttery, creamy puds. I’ve made (and enjoyed) many mashed potatoes over the years, including Diane Morgan’s classic and Emma Laperruque’s spicy salt and vinegar twist. However, my mashed potatoes at the moment are a cheesy, garlicky number from none other than Food52 resident and “The secret sauce” host Dan Pelosi.

Enter: Parmesan Mashed Potatoes With Crispy Garlic And Herbs. Packed with flavor in every bite, this recipe features crunchy garlic and a fragrant herb-infused oil that is mixed with the puree and also used for topping. For extra richness, he mixes sour cream, egg yolks and a healthy dose of grated Parmesan cheese into the potato base. “I wanted to make the most appealing mashed potatoes,” says Dan. (Mission accomplished.) “I’ve added some of my favorite things – spices, garlic, butter and olive oil – to make sure you get a great mix of creamy and crunchy and crunchy. It’s kind of a dream come true.”

The potatoes and plus-one are undeniably the heroes of this dish, and equipping your kitchen with a few tools can make preparing each ingredient much easier. One of Dan’s must-haves for mashed potatoes with just the right texture is a hand masher. “I think it makes for a coarser, but also creamier potato; I don’t like potatoes that are too perfectly whipped,” he explains.

Cleverly designed appliances can also be the difference between a chaotic kitchen and a quiet kitchen as you prepare and work through each step of the recipe. The stainless steel KOHLER Prolific® Workstation Sink that Dan used to prepare this recipe in our test kitchen doubles as a one-stop-shop workstation for peeling potatoes, rinsing and drying herbs, and draining hot liquids. It’s all thanks to the bamboo cutting board, multi-purpose shredded shelving, colander and sink that fit snugly into the ledges of the sink (no extra counter space required). “I could almost serve the meal in the sink, that’s how much it does,” Dan says. A high-tech faucet, such as the KOHLER Crue® Touchless Faucet, makes life easier when it comes to filling heavy pans with water hands-free. (Bonus: This faucet has a ring spray function with an optional power boost for faster, more efficient cleaning.)

As much as I’d love to eat this mashed potato on its own for dinner, I realize that for a fun time, I’ll probably need to supplement my spread with a few other dishes—and luckily, Dan has a few ideas. “Beyond the obvious turkey, steak, and mashed potatoes is a big big favorite of mine,” he says. “You could make a really wonderful pot roast and serve some mashed potatoes on the side instead of in the pot roast — that would be great.” Another less expected pairing? Fish. “I think one thing people don’t realize is that mashed potatoes also go well with fish.” Slow-roasted salmon, grilled whole branzino, or even a crispy bass would all be served perfectly atop this mashed potato — a delicious addition to just about any meal you’ll be making this season.

What are your favorite mashed potatoes toppings? Tell us in the comments below!

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