Roasted garlic and Irish blue cheese mashed potatoes

Cashel makes it better

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These Irish-style mashed potatoes incorporate Irish Cashel blue cheese for a creamy, tangy side to any cut of meat this St. Patrick's Day or any time of year.

Cashel was the first and one of Ireland's only blue cheeses. It's a handmade, semisoft, blue-veined, medium-strength blue cheese similar to Italy's Gorgonzola. Unlike French bleu cheese, it's made solely from cow's milk, and is less salty in flavor than most other blue cheeses.

In this recipe, Cashel is the perfect complement to the mellow flavor of a whole head of roasted garlic. And plenty of butter means less potential for over whipping.

Roasted garlic and Irish blue cheese mashed potatoes recipe

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds russet potatoes
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 whole head roasted garlic, cloves removed and lightly smashed with a fork
  • 1/8-1/4 cup warm milk
  • 1/3-1/2 cup Cashel blue cheese

Directions:

  1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into quarters, try to keep each slice about the same size (it's helpful if all the potatoes you have start around the same size). Soak them in water for about 15 minutes to remove the residual dirt and some of the starch.
  2. Remove them from the water and put them in a large pot. Fill the pot with enough water to cover the potatoes, salting them generously (a good handful should do), then heat the pot on the stove top on high until it begins to simmer. Reduce the heat to keep a steady simmer without it coming to a rolling boil. When the potatoes can be easily smashed with a fork, they're done. Drain them into a colander and allow them to sit until well drained. Place them back in the pot over medium-low heat.
  3. Smash the potatoes with a potato masher until just mashed (2 or 3 passes around the pot).
  4. Add 1/4 of the butter and smash that in until it's mostly incorporated. Switch to a whisk. Repeat adding 1/4 of the butter twice until only 1/4 of the butter remains out of the pot.
  5. Add the final 1/4 of the butter and the roasted garlic and whisk. Salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Add 1/8 cup of milk (more if necessary to make it creamy and silky) and the Cashel blue cheese (at least 1/3 cup, but 1/2 is better for blue cheese lovers), and whisk again.

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Heather Barnett is a freelance writer and foodie whose work has been featured in blogs, websites, magazines, and TV and radio ads. She spends her free time relaxing with her soulmate, Keith; her dog, Mosby "The Fly Slayer;" and Felix the Fish. You can follow her on Twitter @HireHeather.