Here's a colorful last minute update for your Thanksgiving table. Topped with crunchy toasted pumpkin seeds and finished with pumpkin oil, pumpkin mashed potatoes are a natural combination. They are great with Thanksgiving roast turkey but also with roast chicken any time of the year.
Creamy Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
You are probably already making mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving. If your family is open to trying a twist on classic recipes, try colorful pumpkin mashed potatoes. They are a creamy in texture and a lovely, light pumpkin color.
A Successful Experiment
With an open can of pumpkin puree in the refrigerator I didn't want to waste, I added it to mashed potatoes. A successful experiment! Love it when that happens.
Garnishes Make them Great
To garnish, toast raw pumpkin seeds (also known as peptitas) by tossing with olive oil and sea salt until crisp, and drizzle with dark green pumpkin seed oil. Olive oil will do, but try pumpkin seed oil for it's rich taste and beautiful color. Make extra of the pumpkin seeds as they are also terrific on salads and for snacking.
Buy the Right Potato
With golden flesh and smooth thin skin, I buy Yukon gold potatoes for the best, creamy mashed potatoes.
Buying potatoes seems simple, right? Potatoes are always at the market. Just grab some. But potatoes continually show up on the Dirty Dozen list as having high levels of pesticide residues. So if you are looking to reduce pesticides in your families diet, buy organic if they are available.
Options for Making Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
You can either "rice" potatoes with a tool called a ricer (photo below), or whip them with a hand mixer. I've made them both ways. For these photos they were whipped with a hand mixer.
To keep potatoes warm for serving, heat your milk, butter and pumpkin puree together in a small pan, then stir or whip them into the potatoes to serve. Season with extra salt and pepper to your taste.
How to Keep Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes Warm
To make potatoes ahead and keep them warm, set up a double boiler. Use a large 5 quart or so pot filled with a few inches of water. Bring the water to a simmer, then place the potatoes in a large stainless steel or glass bowl and turn to low. Cover the bowl with foil and set atop the pot. The heat will keep potatoes hot for serving about 30-60 minutes. To serve, sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds and drizzle with oil.
Of course if you have a warming drawer, problem solved (unless is already full!).
Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
- Large pot to cook the potatoes
- Potato ricer or hand mixer
- 2 pounds gold potatoes
- ⅔ cup milk you may need more
- ½ can can pumpkin puree 15 ounce, or more if you like
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds optional
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin oil or olive oil optional
- ¾ teaspoon sea salt divided use
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper or ground black
- Peel and chop potatoes into approximately 1 ½″ – 2″ chunks. Place potatoes into a medium saucepan and add cold water just to cover. Add ½ teaspoon of the salt. Turn heat to medium and simmer potatoes just until tender when pierced with the tip of a paring knife, about 10-12 minutes.
- While potatoes are simmering, add the milk, pumpkin and butter to a small pan over low heat to warm and melt.
- When potatoes are cooked, drain off the water and place the potatoes back into the hot pan over the turned off burner. Cover with a lid and steam dry for a few minutes. Remove the lid and mash the potatoes with either a potato ricer or a hand mixer.
- After potatoes are mashed, stir or whip in the milk-pumpkin mixture until smooth. Add the last ½ teaspoon of salt and pepper to season. Garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds and drizzle with oil.
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