I had no intention of writing this post because, like you, I am done with Thanksgiving, and with the remains of the feast. Or so I thought. Then, the other day, I found the potatoes. They had been shoved in the back of my fridge. My brother-in-law, who hosted Thanksgiving this year, had densely packed a container with mashed potatoes and sent us home with it, along with turkey and stuffing and all the other goodies. I had forgotten about them–the potatoes (everything else we polished off ages ago).
As it happened, I found the potatoes at precisely the same moment that I was struck with an intense craving for truffles, and I don’t mean the chocolate kind. Lucky for me I don’t get this craving often–I can’t afford to. So did I go out and purchase a beautiful black nugget to shave over my leftover mashed potatoes? Of course not. I did the next best thing–I bought a slim wedge of sottocenere al tartufo, a lovely semi-soft cheese from Italy’s Veneto region that is flecked with luscious bits of black truffle. I shredded the cheese right into the potatoes, along with a generous handful of freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, some cubed mozzarella and a bit of seasoning. I whisked it all together with a couple of eggs and baked it. Then, my family and I devoured it, along with lamb sausages from my farmers’ market and a simple green salad dressed with olive oil and vinegar. It’s really unfair to call these potatoes leftovers, so I’ve bestowed on them a more appropriate name: Baked Truffled Mashed Potatoes. Buon Appetito!
You certainly don’t have to wait for Thanksgiving leftovers to make these delicious potatoes. Just boil 2 1/2 to 3 pounds of Yukon Gold (or other) potatoes until tender and puree them with a little butter and cream before proceeding with the recipe.
Makes 6 servings
3 packed cups leftover mashed potatoes
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
4 to 6 ounces sottocenere al tartufo
1/2 cup diced fresh mozzarella
Fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Butter for coating a baking dish
3 tablespoons dried unseasoned breadcrumbs
Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl, combine the mashed potatoes and eggs and mix together with a wooden spoon or spatula. Stir in 3/4 cup of the Parmigiano, the sottocenere, and the mozzarella. Season the mixture with a little salt and pepper, and a pinch of nutmeg, if you like. Mix everything together gently but thoroughly.
Coat a 9-inch square or an oval oven-proof baking dish with butter. Sprinkle 1 tablespoons of bread crumbs into the baking dish and coat the interior with the crumbs. Spoon the potato mixture into the baking dish. Combine the remaining 2 tablespoons bread crumbs and the remaining 1/4 cup Parmigiano cheese and sprinkle it over the top of the potatoes. Bake the potatoes, uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes, until golden on top and hot throughout. Remove the potatoes from the oven and let them sit for just a minute or two before serving.