This unique mashed potatoes recipe features three fun flavor twists that transform this comforting vegetable side dish into a cultured umami experience.
Imagine: ginger and a bit of green chili is caramelized in ghee and mixed into the mashed potato with cultured yogurt, Himalayan pink salt, and black pepper. Are your tastebuds dancing? They should be.
For non-veg readers, this spiced mashed potatoes will totally work as a dinner side. Ginger would be the only taste potentially out of place.
But do you know what? You could swap the ginger in this recipe for garlic, and it would taste absolutely amazing as well.
Mashed potatoes without milk
The first flavor twist is cultured yogurt.
Instead of the typical milk or cream to add creaminess to mashed potatoes, this recipe calls for whole milk yogurt. If you wish, you can always use a plant-based yogurt instead.
Yogurt adds an unmistakable savory tanginess to the flavor, as well as a hit of probiotics for your gut health.
Since yogurt is already a little runny, there is no need to add milk.
Are mashed potatoes healthy?
The second flavor twist is ghee.
For a traditional mashed potatoes, butter is used.
For this recipe, instead of regular butter this recipe calls for an ancient form of clarified butter from India known as ghee. These days ghee is widely available in North American grocery stores and online.
Ghee is made from cultured cream that is churned into butter, and then simmered slowly over a flame to bring out the essence of the butterfat.
Almost all the milk proteins are removed in the process of making ghee, so ghee is safe for most folks with lactose intolerance. If you haven’t tried ghee yet, I highly recommend it.
According to Ayurveda, the ancient science of life from India, ghee is one of the healthiest fats you can use.
Ayurveda says ghee is easy to digest. It supports the good microbes in your gut, it is anti-inflammatory, and it builds vital essence (ojas) in your body.
Oh, and did I mention that it tastes like toasted butter?
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The ghee spice drizzle
The third twist for this mashed potatoes recipe is the burst of flavor that comes from gently sautéing minced ginger and fiery green chili in ghee.
I like to cook the ghee mixture until it is nicely browned (a glorious experience, I promise).
Then, most of it gets mixed into the mashed potatoes, while the remainder becomes a drizzle on top, so you can really see it and appreciate it.
Once the ghee drizzle is ready, the addition of a good bit of quality sea salt and freshly ground black pepper is all the now-cultured mashed potatoes need.
How to make mashed potatoes
If you are new to mashed potato land, you have come to the right place. Here is how to make the potatoes for mashed potatoes:
Start with any potatoes you like. Russet potatoes are a little mealier and tend to break down into a smoother consistency, while something like a red potatoes or Yukon gold potatoes will be creamier and chunkier. It’s all good!
For the cleanest mashed potatoes, peel them first using a vegetable peeler. (I believe that if you kept the peels on it would be called dirty potatoes.)
Then chop the potatoes into 1-inch pieces, place them in a saucepan, and cover with cold water.
Chopping the potatoes first has two advantages.
The first is that it helps them cook faster (about 15 minutes). The second is that it makes it easier to mash them later.
Bring the water to a boil and stir salt into the water so that the potatoes get flavored while cooking.
Once the potatoes are soft, drain off the water using a colander or sieve. Return the potatoes to the cooking pot.
Use a potato masher to mash the potatoes, and finally add in all your goodies to flavor the potatoes and mix it all up.
That’s all folks!
Mashed potato alternatives
This is a recipe about mashed potatoes, but since you are already into mashing stuff, I need to tell you that everything comforting that you love about mashed potatoes is equally true when it comes to other vegetables.
Other vegetables can also be mashed or pureed.
Try sweet potatoes, turnips, and rutabagas. Or celeriac, carrots, or cauliflower.
Since these potato alternatives don’t have the same consistency as potatoes, consider using a blender to help with the pureeing.
Another thing to try (which is a personal favorite of mine), is to combine the aforementioned vegetables with potatoes, such as my potato and celeriac mashed potatoes. Turnip and potato is incredible too!
And these suggestions will all work with yogurt, ghee or butter, salt, and pepper to flavor.
So you’ve got ideas galore. Now get your mash on, and cook some vegetables!
Spiced Mashed Potatoes with Ginger & Ghee
- 4 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
for the seasoned ghee
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 1 tablespoon ginger, finely minced (1 inch of ginger)
- 1 teaspoon green chili, finely minced (sub with Jalapeno or Serrano pepper)
to finish the mashed potatoes
- 1 ½ cups plain whole milk yogurt
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Place peeled and chopped potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, and season water with a teaspoon of salt.
- Stir well to dissolve, then add the prepared potatoes. Boil for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are well cooked and fall-apart tender.
Make the seasoned ghee
- Heat ghee in a small skillet on medium-low heat. Add minced ginger and green chili, and sauté until nicely browned. Turn off the heat and set aside.
Finish the spiced mashed potatoes
- Drain the water from the potatoes using a colander or sieve, then transfer the potatoes back into the cooking pot. Mash well with a potato masher. Add yogurt, salt, black pepper, and most of the seasoned ghee. Stir well, taste, and adjust for salt.
- Transfer mashed potatoes to a serving dish and drizzle with remaining seasoned ghee.