Thanksgiving is coming up, and on that day, gracing tables across the country, will be the traditional fall side dish: mashed potatoes. Despite being such a simple concept, mashed potatoes are often the go-to sidekick for turkey dinner. Perhaps it’s because they’re so simple that they’ve become such a hit; after all, your personal mashed potatoes can be whatever you want them to be with the right toppings. In light of that, here are five mashed potato toppings you can try at home to give the classic side a new personality this thanksgiving.
I know what you’re thinking: “Everyone puts gravy on their mashed potatoes, this is nothing new.” However, most people make their gravy from the juices of the turkey, and are blind to the multitudes of other gravies in the world. Apart from brown gravy (which is the standard), there is: egg gravy, which includes the addition of a beaten egg and milk to thicken the sauce; onion gravy, composed entirely of sweated onions and wine; and red-eye gravy, which uses the drippings of ham and a deglazing of coffee for a unique taste. If you’re vegan, vegetable gravy is equally delicious and only takes vegetable broth, flour, and oil to make.
Something about potatoes and cheese makes me drool. At first glance, the obvious choices for cheese would be cheddar or mozzarella. You really can’t go wrong either way, but if you’re feeling a little bold there are some more exotic choices. Parmesan cheese, for that entirely unauthentic Italian taste, or gouda, if you want your guests to think you know something about cooking. Even crumbled gorgonzola, the poster child for posh cheeses, can work well with potatoes when added sparingly.
A French delicacy, called Pomme Duchesse, owes its fluffy texture to egg yolks. The added weight of the eggs makes forming the mashed potatoes into edible sculptures a breeze. This thanksgiving, take presentation in cooking way too far! Making this dish requires two rounds of cooking, one for the potatoes and one for the yolks, so make sure you have enough prep time. Alternatively, just serve your guests eggs still in the carton and hope they don’t get salmonella. If Rocky did it, you can too.
Okay look, I was on board for the egg yolks because it’s an actual French dish, but this is just stupid. What would this even taste like? Greek yogurt and mashed potatoes are both pretty much flavourless. You eat them for the texture, and you add toppings so that they taste like something other than paint. It’s like forcing two magnets together: you can’t do it, it’s unnatural. Greek yogurt isn’t supposed to be eaten hot either, so what are you gonna do? The potatoes are already scalding, maybe put some ice in it? This is getting out of hand.
Oh look at me, I support Mexican cuisine, I’m so worldly. NO. You’re not worldly. In fact, congratulations! You’ve just concocted something out of a Dr. Seuss book. This is the stuff that they’d serve at the restaurant in a Shrek themed amusement park, except there they’d probably have the decency of just using green food coloring. Remember at the beginning of this article when I said your mashed potatoes can be anything you choose them to be? I was wrong. If you choose this, you’re wrong too.