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Perfect Mashed Potatoes With Crispy Potato Skins

Join Zaynab Issa in the Bon Appétit Test Kitchen as she makes her recipe for creamy yukon gold mashed potatoes, topped with crispy potato skins.

Get the recipe: Creamy Yukon Golds With Crispy Potato Skins

Released on 11/21/2022


[Zaynab laughing]

What do I feel like I like just gave birth?

[upbeat music]

Today we're in the test kitchen

making my creamy mashed potatoes with crispy potato skin.

So this recipe uses the entire potato,

the skin's included,

and we fry them in some olive oil and butter

so you get really nice crispy potato skins

on top of a creamy mash.

[drums playing]

We're gonna start by prepping the potatoes.

This recipe is designed for Thanksgiving,

so it feeds eight to 10.

So we have five pounds of potatoes here.

I'm using Yukon Gold because I feel

like they're the right balance of starchy and waxy

and I think they're superior in terms of flavor.

So I'm gonna start by peeling the potatoes.

Ideally in wide strips,

you're gonna make your life easier

when it comes to thinly slicing the skins.

So I'm just peeling all of the potato skins

in really wide strips.

So once you've got most of the skin off the potatoes,

any like little skinny bits you can just toss,

just to clean up the potatoes.

We're not gonna be able to use those anyway,

since they're gonna be really annoying to cut.

I want a really creamy mash at the end,

so I don't want any little bits of skin getting in there,

and these kinds of peels are gonna be tough to thinly slice.

The other good thing about using Yukon Golds

is you don't need to like keep them in water

because their starch content is lower

so they're not gonna oxidize as fast and get red.

I'm gonna start by stacking some of these skins,

this is the easiest way I find to do this.

I like to keep it potato interior side down

because I feel like it grips to the cutting board better

than if I were to put it skin side down,

they sort of slide around.

So grab like five, six, as many as you can handle,

go slow if you need to,

and then just thinly slice them into little match sticks.

The thicker they are the longer they're gonna take

in the oil,

so the thinner, the better,

and that's what we're going for.

So after these sort of get fried up,

they're gonna be very crispy, crunchy,

similar to like potato sticks,

or like crispy fried shallots or onions.

So now I'm gonna start by cutting up the potatoes.

I'm gonna cut them roughly into the same size pieces,

just so that they cook evenly.

Quarters for the more medium-sized ones

and probably into six pieces for the larger ones

like this one.

And we're gonna put them straight into a pot here,

quartering them and cutting them into smaller pieces,

this is just gonna speed up the cook time.

You could drop them in whole,

it would take you a lot longer.

You don't wanna cut them into pieces

that are too small, though,

because they'll get waterlogged,

and you really mess with the texture of the potatoes.

Okay, potatoes are all chopped up.

And then I'm gonna move on to garlic.

I'm adding the garlic peeled straight in with the potatoes,

they're gonna boil together.

That's gonna take the edge off the garlic,

and they're gonna get riced in with the mashed potatoes.

So you're getting like bits of whole garlic,

not infused garlic.

There is a whole head of garlic in these mashed potatoes.

We have 12 cloves of garlic going in with the potatoes.

I'm gonna cover the potatoes with cold water.

Starting the potatoes in cold water is gonna help them cook

more evenly.

So now we're gonna generously salt the potatoes and garlic.

This is our chance to season the potatoes from the inside.

So we're gonna do it, do more than what you think,

they can take it,

and we're gonna spill out all this water,

so don't be worried about it being too salty.

So while this comes to a boil,

I'm gonna get started on the crispy potato skins.

[drums playing]

So I'm gonna start the large skillet on medium heat,

I'm gonna add a half cup of olive oil

and a half cup of butter.

We're using both oil and butter,

cause ultimately the same fat

that we're gonna fry the potato skins in

is gonna be the fat that flavors the mashed potatoes.

So none of this is gonna be going to waste,

but we also want to make sure whatever fat we're gonna pour

into the potatoes is super flavorful.

Using butter gives us like a really nice flavor,

but frying in butter can be a little bit tricky,

since the milk solids tend to brown.

So we're cutting it with some oil to prevent that

from happening as fast.

So I'm gonna drop the potatoes in an even layer.

Be careful it might splatter up a little bit.

That's just the water in the butter.

You can see that they've significantly shrunk in volume,

they're beginning to get really nice and golden.

They're gonna need like maybe another 30 seconds

or a minute and then I'm gonna transfer them

onto the paper towel-lined plate.

Okay, this looks good.

So you can kind of see at the bottom there's

both the like brown milk solids,

but there's also these like little bits of potato

that are flavoring this fat that's gonna end up

getting put in the mashed potatoes.

Hit them with a little bit of salt,

so that they're like crispy and salty.

Then I'm gonna go in with another batch.

The second batch will cook a little bit faster,

not significantly, like a minute or two faster.

This part is pretty active.

They're really nice and light

and they look super crunchy and crispy so they look perfect.

I'm gonna season that last batch that just came out

with a little bit more salt,

and they're ready.

You can just let these hang out

while you make your mashed potatoes.

The potatoes are boiling,

so we're gonna reduce the heat to medium, medium/low,

so we can maintain a gentle simmer.

They're gonna cook for like 20 to 30 minutes,

until a knife can easily be pierced in

and they're nice and tender.

[drums playing]

It's been like 20 minutes,

and so I'm gonna check on the potatoes.

You just want the pairing knife to go in really easily,

and then when you twist it, it should easily crack open,

and that'll mean that the potatoes are ready to go.

I'm gonna drain the potatoes in the sink

and then return them to the pot.

So I'm gonna let the potatoes cool off directly in the pot.

The residual heat is gonna allow the excess moisture

to sort of steam off and this way we're working

with really nice and dry potatoes when we add the fat.

So this is another stick of butter that's gonna go

into this reserved fat from the potato skins,

and we're just gonna melt it so that we can add it

to our riced potatoes after.

I'm doing this on low heat

cause I don't really wanna cook the butter at this stage,

I just want it to melt into the rest of the fats.

Okay, so this is almost melted in.

Don't worry about any of these little bits of potato.

They're totally fine,

they're not gonna affect anything too much.

It's all melted. We're good.

I'm gonna kill the heat,

and we can take it over to the island.

So you can see the potatoes are really nice and dry,

there isn't any like water or any like moisture

sort of remaining on the surface

and that means that we're ready to rice them.

You wanna do this while the potatoes are warm,

and kind of pretty close to serving time.

Golds potatoes do not absorb the fats

and the moisture that well,

so you end up with something that's kind of like gooey

and lumpy.

The fact that this is like objectively a very easy task,

but it's like very difficult for me is a problem.

I need to go to the gym.

The like whole garlic cloves are also getting passed

through this.

So they're like in there,

and you won't even be able to see them,

but they're gonna add a ton of flavor.

Okay, I'm gonna get the last little bits off the bottom

and that's it.

The hard part is over.

Okay, so I'm gonna add the reserved fats

plus the melted butter to the potatoes.

It's gonna stir to evenly distribute the fat,

and then we're gonna work the heavy cream in

in three additions.

I'm using heavy cream because go big or go home.

You could use whole milk,

I wouldn't use anything leaner than whole milk, though,

because it's really gonna affect the texture

and the flavor of the mashed potatoes.

So you wanna mix each addition

until it's fully incorporated,

this way we don't end up with mashed potatoes

that are too loose.

And I'm using warmed heavy cream

because the mashed potatoes are warm.

So everything's just gonna mix in a lot easier

if the temperatures are the same.

So that was the first addition,

it's nice and incorporated,

so I'm gonna go in with a second addition now.

So this is what we're talking about.

We're talking about creamy mashed potatoes.

The texture is really light,

it's not too loose or too stiff.

This is perfect for me.

If you liked it a little bit looser,

you could add more heavy cream,

and if you liked it a little bit more stiff,

you could hold back a little bit as well.

I'm gonna taste it for salt and then adjust.

A good rule of thumb is like a teaspoon of salt

per pound of potatoes.

So this was five pounds.

I'm gonna, probably at the end of this,

going to have used like four teaspoons,

but I'm gonna keep tasting and adjusting as I go.

That's perfect.

So I'm ready to plate.

You can see how creamy these are.

This is like the perfect texture for me.

Okay, so I'm adding all of the mashed potatoes to the bowl

and then I'm going to just flatten it out a little bit,

so we have a nice surface to add the crispy potato skins.

I'm gonna add a little bit of black pepper

and then just place all of those crispy potato skins

right on top.

Yeah, that looks perfect.

So that's it. These are my creamy mashed potatoes

with crispy potato skins.

Rachel, you wanna try mashed potatoes?

This looks so cute.


It's creamy mashed potatoes with crispy potato skins.

That's so smart.


Using the skins is so, so, so smart.

They always get thrown out

and it just makes the potato flavor...

More potatoey.

More potatoey, but in the best way possible,

because it's adding so much crunch and saltiness.

They are given potato chips the best way.

Look, I would snack on these.

Yeah, I was literally eating them earlier.

Thank you.

Of course.

I think this is one of those rare occasions

where people who like both like textured,

lumpier mashed potatoes would be really happy with this.

And people who really like creamy mashed potatoes,

would be happy with this too.

On any other day, I don't want anybody in the kitchen,

but on Thanksgiving like it's gotta be a family affair.

That way if anything turns out bad, it's not my fault.

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