I love potatoes.
At every holiday meal that I can remember, my plate has always been 1/2 mashed potatoes and everything else practically crammed around the main event. I’m talking Close Encounters of the Third Kind kinda level of mashed potato mountains. Stir in some horseradish that is supposed to be for the prime rib, and I am in heaven.
Here we have mashed potatoes all wrapped up as a tiny finger food with a spicy dip that you can serve tapas style. These fluffy little poofs have a hint of cheese and spice, but can be modified to fit your taste. I may whip up a batch of bacon + cheddar next time – loaded baked potato style! This recipe is also perfect for that giant bowl of left over mashed potatoes hanging out in your fridge.
The possibilities for dipping sauces are endless. I included a spicy baja sauce that I put on everything – fish tacos, nachos, sandwhiches, everything, as well as horseradish cream for a different kind of bite.
- 2 lbs potatoes (I used baby reds, but yukon works great)
- 2 Tbsp butter
- ¼ c shredded Parmesan cheese
- 3 cloves garlic, grated or minced
- small bunch of chives
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 egg, beaten
- ½ cup flour, plus 1 Tbsp
- vegetable oil for frying
- 3 Tbsp mayo
- 1 Tbsp Tapatio hot sauce
- 1 garlic clove, grated
- 1 Tbsp chopped cilantro
- 3 Tbsp sour cream
- 1 Tbsp grated horseradish
- 1 Tbsp mayo
- 1 garlic clove, grated
- If making a sauce, mix together all ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate before hand to let the flavors intensify (and not taste like straight up mayo).
- Skin, cube, and boil potatoes; cook until tender, depending on the type of potato used. Drain and place into a large bowl. Mash away.
- Add butter, cheese, garlic, chives, and cayenne. Mix well, then add salt and pepper to taste. Incorporate the egg and flour into the mashed potatoes, forming a dough.
- Lightly flour your hands and roll mashed potatoes into small balls; I have found that small, 1 inch balls work the best. Set them aside until all the balls have been made.
- Over med-high heat, add a thin layer of vegetable oil to a large pan. Add one potato ball to the oil to test the temperature of the oil - it should sizzle immediately. Working in batches, place the potato balls into the pan with room to expand and puff up. After a few minutes and the bottoms of the puffs are browned, flip over and fry a few more minutes. Repeat until all sides of the potato puffs are browned and the middles are cooked through. Set aside on a stack of paper towels to drain and cool. Repeat with remaining balls until all puffs are cooked.