Okay, so “smashed” potatoes are sometimes considered just a lazy way of making mashed potatoes. And indeed, they take a lot less effort. But smashing them is also an excellent way to get butter and herbs into all of the nooks and crannies of the potato, while still retaining the potato’s texture. Spring new potatoes smash up great, as do buttery Yukon Golds.
Most recipes for smashed potatoes (there are links to several from other food bloggers at the bottom of the recipe) call for boiling the potatoes to cook them. In this recipe, you essentially bake them in a pot in the oven. They cook in their own moisture while they are bathed in butter. Baking them in a pot prevents them from drying out too much to smash easily, yet keeps them dry enough to fluff up well.
Do you have a favorite way to make smashed potatoes? Please let us know about it in the comments.
Smashed New Potatoes with Garlic and Chives Recipe
- 1-2 pounds new potatoes or Yukon Golds
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 minced garlic clove
- 1-2 tablespoons minced chives or green onion greens
1 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Put the potatoes in a medium oven-proof pot (with a cover) and add about 1 tablespoon of the butter, cut into pieces. Cover and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
2 Take the potatoes out and mix them so they’re coated with butter. Sprinkle the potatoes with salt. Return to the oven, cover, and cook for another 45 minutes to an hour, depending on how large the potatoes are.
3 To test for doneness, poke a potato with a fork. If the fork penetrates easily, they're done. When the potatoes are nice and soft, remove the pot from the oven and, using a potato masher, crush each potato. Don’t pound them into oblivion, just crush them. Toss with the garlic and remaining butter. Add more salt to taste.
Sprinkle chives on the potatoes to serve.
Yield: Serves 3 to 6.