K.C.'s Mashed Potato Stuffing
I'm not sure who once said "love and cooking should be approached with reckless abandon," but I've accepted those as good words to live by!
Years ago I was given a recipe for "Mashed Potato Stuffing," from an old Amish cookbook. Essentially it's two standard holiday favorites combined in one casserole. And it's heavenly!
I lost that old recipe, but spent yesterday teaching a friend how to make the dish from memory - and it turned out really, really well.
I never follow recipes anyway - I tend to eyeball things, or go with texture, feel, etc., rather than worry about exact amounts.
Let me share it with you here, as well as some tips to make it extra delish! Keep in mind this is a holiday recipe, so I do not go light on fat or any other good stuff!
Ingredients for stuffing
- unsalted butter (*always use unsalted butter for sauteing!)
- small onion - I prefer the sweet varieties - chopped
- celery, chopped into small bits. I used about four ribs, use more or less according to your taste
- sage - fresh, about a tablespoon, chopped finely (use more or less depending on how much bread you use)
- salt, freshly ground pepper
- bread - cubed, day-old. I cubed some beautiful sourdough bread, and let it sit out for a day to get stale. How much you use will depend on how many people you're cooking for.
- vegetable or chicken broth
In a large skillet (I love my cast iron skillet!) melt a stick of butter under a medium-low heat. Add the onions and celery, stirring occasionally and cook till the onions are translucent, and the celery is soft.
Add the bread cubes, and some salt and pepper. Stir, letting the bread evenly absorb the butter. Keep on a low heat and start adding your broth (vegetable or chicken). You want the stuffing to be moist, but not wet. Salt and pepper to taste (I love lots of freshly cracked pepper!)
Ingredients for Mashed Potatoes
- Yukon Gold potatoes (don't use Idaho! They're not suitable for mashed potatoes, Yukon Gold are your best bet for flavor and consistency)
- butter (salted) at room temp, should be very soft
- half and half or whole milk
Peel and cube your potatoes - you want all the pieces to be about the same size so they cook evenly. Place them in a pan, fill with enough water to cover potatoes, add some salt, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer till potatoes are done, about 20 minutes. They'll easily split with a fork when they're done. Turn off the burner -
Drain the potatoes, then return them to the warm pan and place on burner for a minute or two (while the burner is still off!), stirring them. This dries the potatoes - it's an old Julia Child tip!
How do you prefer to mash your taters? Personally, I like using a ricer because you never get lumps, and I love the consistency. But if you prefer to mash them, that's fine!
While you're mashing...
Heat the half and half - don't boil it. But warm it up - you never want to use cold milk or half and half for potatoes.
Add butter to the potatoes. Depends on how many potatoes you made. 5 or 6 potatoes and you could easily use half a stick or more.
Start adding your half and half (or milk) a little bit at a time, till you get to the creamy consistency you like. Yes, the potatoes should be thick and creamy, not stiff or dry.
Then in a large bowl, combine your potatoes and stuffing - mix them together gently. You want them to be combined, but not mushy...
Now...grease your casserole pan with a little butter - best to use glass rather than a metal pan. Add your potato-stuffing mix. Bake covered at 350 for about 20 minutes, then remove the lid and bake another ten minutes or so.
Serve with gravy...the one I made (in the photo) is a mushroom-wine gravy...mmmmmm!
I'm not a professional cook or chef, so I hope I didn't overlook anything! If you have any questions or comments, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. And let me know if you try this recipe!