This recipe makes enough to serve 15. You can cut the recipe in half or by a quarter. Here’s how it’s made:
Start with equal parts Russet (brown baking) potatoes and Yukon Gold potatoes. I used 5 Russets and 11 Yukon Golds (they’re half the size or Russets). Also, you’ll need one garlic clove for each Russet, and one for every two Yukon Golds. I used about 10 medium cloves of garlic.
Cube all the potatoes and place them in a big dutch oven.
Next the garlic
To peel the garlic easily, smash each clove with the flat side of your knife.
The peel comes right off.
Give the cloves a rough chop
And add them to the potatoes.
Cover the potatoes with water,
Place on the stove and add 3 heaping tablespoons of salt.
That sounds like a lot of salt, but this is actually one of the most important steps of cooking any kind of food in water (rice, pasta, beans, etc…). You must salt the water that the the food is cooking in, so the food, by osmosis, will be properly seasoned. If you’re unsure as to whether you have enough salt in the water, then stir it, dip your finger in, and taste it. It should have the same saltiness that you’d expect in a soup.
Bring the water to a boil, reduce heat to medium-high, then set the time on 11 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the other ingredients that you’ll add to the potatoes: 16 oz cream cheese, 8 oz butter, and 1 1/2 C sour cream.
Check the potatoes after they’ve boiled about 11 minutes. They’re done when a fork inserted into a russet breaks in half. (The Yukon Golds are more waxy and won’t break in half when they’re tender.)
Drain the potatoes
And add just the butter and cream cheese.
Cover and let sit for about five minutes to allow the butter and cream cheese to soften.
While I was waiting, I collecting the herbs I’d be adding.
Chives, sage, and thyme. You can use dried herbs if you don’t have fresh on hand. Substitute about 1 T of dried per every 1/4 C of fresh. I’ve just used Italian seasoning in this recipe before, and that’s great, too.
Remove the thyme leaves by running your fingers down the stem.
Chop each herb finely.
Once the cream cheese and butter are softened/melted,
Add the sour cream and herbs.
Mash gently (you can use a potato masher; I just don’t have one so I used a whisk)
You want the mixture to be pourable, so add milk until it’s a little soupy.
Don’t forget black pepper.
Pour into a casserole pan,
And spread out the top with a spoon. I like to make it look a little rustic by leaving peaks and valleys on the surface. At this point you can stick it in the oven, or you can keep in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before baking. Just be sure to allow it to come to room temperature before baking.
Bake at 400 degrees until the top is golden and crusty.