The Best Mashed Potatoes Ever
- Pot: 8-12 qt. stock pot or Dutch oven
- 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed and skins removed
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 1 sprig of rosemary
- 10 chive stems
- 4 1/2 lbs Russet Potatoes
- Kosher salt
- 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for topping if desired
- Freshly ground pepper
- Place the half-and-half in a medium saucepan along with the garlic cloves, thyme, rosemary, and chive stems. Bring the half-and-half to a simmer, then turn down until it is barely simmering and is reduced by 1/2 cup, about 8-10 minutes.
- Strain the half-and-half through a sieve, discarding the herbs and garlic. Set the warm half-and-half aside.
- Peel the potatoes and dice them into 2-inch pieces. Place the diced potatoes in a pot of cold water with a tablespoon of salt. Bring the potatoes to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the potatoes can gently be pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes.
- Drain the potatoes in a colander, shaking off any excess water, then place them back in the pan over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, to dry out the bottom of the pan for a minute, then place the potatoes in a large bowl. (If you’d like, you can wash the pot and dry it and rice the potatoes back into this pot.)
- Rice the potatoes in batches into the pot. Alternatively, mash the potatoes in the pot until most of the lumps are gone. (Note: Do not place the potatoes in a food processor or stand mixer to puree. They will become gluey and sticky.)
- Once all of the potatoes are mashed, pour in the cream and a tablespoon of salt and stir gently. Add the butter and stir until melted. Taste, adding more seasoning or butter if desired.
- Serve immediately, or cover and allow to cool, then refrigerate overnight. To reheat, place the potatoes over very low heat on the cooktop and add 2 tablespoons of half-and-half and 2 tablespoons of butter. As they begin to reheat, slowly stir them to incorporate the other ingredients, being careful not to overwork them.