13 October 2009

Cheddar Bacon Mashed Potatoes

It's a simple fact that I am a carb girl.  I love my pasta, my bread, my rice...and my potatoes.  Oh, potatoes, how I love thee.  Let me count the ways.  Baked, scalloped, french fried, roasted, MASHED.  Let's stop there.  Mashed.  I have loved mashed potatoes since forever.  When I first started staying home alone after school, one of my favorite things to snack on after school was instant mashed potatoes.  I'd mix the flakes and the milk, water, butter, and salt, then stand in front of the microwave watching the creation of my mashed potatoes.

I've since moved on from my potato-flake origins, to bigger and better things.  Though there are a few more ingredients, these mashies will make you sooo happy.  The melted cheddar turns them a pale orange color, and the bits of bacon are crunchy, salty, and delicious.  Although, when is bacon not delicious?

Cheddar Bacon Mashed Potatoes

8 baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 c. milk
3/4 c. heavy cream
4 oz. cream cheese
2 tbsp. butter
1 c. cheddar cheese
6 strips leftover cooked bacon, crumbled
salt & pepper, to taste

I like to cut my potatoes in chunks about 1" cubed.  The smaller you cut them, the quicker they cook.  Place cut potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water.  Once all potatoes are cut, bring water to a boil.  Cook about 10 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender.  Drain.

While potatoes are draining, add 2 tbsp. butter to the hot, empty pot.

Return the potatoes to the hot pot, and add milk/cream mixture and cream cheese.  I used cream because I had it on hand.  If you don't have it, you can certainly just use milk. 

I like to use my electric hand mixer to mash the potatoes and liquid together.  Andrew and I both like smooth, creamy potatoes, so I get all the lumps out.  Add salt and pepper to your liking.  At this point, you could stop, and have absolutely delicious mashed potatoes.

But I had the ingredients on hand to take it a step futher - shredded cheddar cheese and leftover cooked bacon.  Add them to the pot and mix it up!

Lick the beaters while your husband isn't looking, then serve with your favorite meat and veggie. 

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