As we expected, potatoes are a popular topic, especially at this time of year. We’ve received a couple of really good questions from our readers about our Whipped Potatoes recipe, and our answers are below:
Marilyn H. writes:
“Love the mashed potato ideas…but how do you strain a pot of potatoes, then put them back in the kettle on medium high heat for 10 minutes without scorching /burning them?”
Great question, Marilyn, and thanks so much for asking us. Of course, every stove is different, so what works on ours may not necessarily work on yours. If you think medium-high will be too hot on your stove, start out at a lower heat, and stir frequently.
If your pot seems to be getting too hot, remove it from the burner for a minute or two, adjust your heat down, and return it to the heat for another minute or two. If the potatoes seem to be getting a little brown, just remove from the heat – they should be ready. Five to ten minutes of extra cooking should be ample.
If you pay attention to the potatoes throughout this process, you should have good results.
“Can I make whipped potatoes ahead of time and keep them warm in a crock pot?”
Another great question – who wants to eat cold potatoes? The answer is a resounding yes, the crock pot is a great way to hold the whipped/mashed potatoes until you’re ready to serve them. Just follow these easy steps, and your potatoes should stay warm for up to 4 hours:
- Prep the crock pot: Grease the inside of the pot with butter, and pour a small amount of heavy cream into the pot (approx. 1 to 2 tablespoons).
- To keep food in the “safe-serving” zone, make sure you transfer the potatoes to the crock pot while they’re still warm – re-heating refrigerated food in a slow cooker is a no-no.
- Set the crock pot on LOW and stir at least once an hour, for up to four hours before serving.
- Stir the potatoes again before serving, as the cream may tend to separate.
Joyce G. asks:
“ I enjoy reading your columns and am planning to make your whipped potatoes for our Thanksgiving meal. Your recipe specifies unsalted butter, but I only have the regular salted version on hand. Is it ok to use that and just cut down on the added kosher salt? How much salt should I use? Thanks for your help!”
Very good question – Yes, you may use salted butter for this recipe. Taste the potatoes as they’re being mixed and then add kosher salt according to your taste. I would start with a half-teaspoon first and go from there.
The reason we use unsalted butter in all of our recipes is that this allows us to control the level of salt in the recipe, according to our taste. This is a classic rule among professional chefs, but many home cooks are accustomed to using salted butter.
Karen K. asks:
“How do you heat your make-ahead whipped potatoes?”
While there are whipped potato recipes geared for the purpose of making them well in advance of serving, ours isn’t one of them. For best results, we recommend serving the potatoes immediately once they’re ready. *See above answers for heating instructions.
Nona O. asks:
“Can I cook the mashed potatoes a day ahead and then re-heat in the oven the next day like in the morning and then put into a crock pot to keep warm until afternoon serving time?”
We would not recommend doing this for this particular recipe, as we feel that the potatoes will just be too dry when it’s time to serve them. Instead, I’m going to recommend a recipe from Ree Drummond (a.k.a., The Pioneer Woman), which uses cream cheese.
My grandmother used to make a dish very similar to this one, which she would prepare the day before and bake on Thanksgiving day. To be honest, we don’t know how these will keep once transferred to a crock pot, but if you go this route, add a little cream to the pot before the potatoes go in, and be sure to stir every so often. Hopefully, that should work for you.
Here is Ree Drummond’s mashed potato recipe: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2007/11/delicious_creamy_mashed_potatoes/
Nona O. asks:
“Would you provide information on how one should re-heat the Sarello’s Whipped Potatoes. Temperature, time and any other suggestions”
Great question, Nona, thank you for asking it. For cold whipped potatoes, we recommend the following:
Place potatoes in a sauté pan over medium to medium-high heat. Add a 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of cream, and stir constantly to soften the potatoes and work the cream in. Keep stirring until well mixed and hot. If the potatoes start to dry up, add more cream. This process will take about 5 to 10 minutes.
If you have any questions you need answered before Thanksgiving, feel free to post them here on the blog or send us an email to email@example.com.
Be sure to check out our THANKSGIVING 101 section, which has Tony’s Top Ten Turkey Tips, Thawing Guideilnes, Wine Pairings, and Recipes.
Remember: We’re here for you, and you CAN do this!