Mashers from Good Eats S1E2 – “This Spud’s for You”

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I’m not even gonna lie, the first season of Good Eats seems to have a lot of super basic recipes geared toward people with little to no cooking experience. (In all fairness, the next recipe I will be doing is…scrambled eggs). I thought this recipe for mashed potatoes was going to be exactly that, a basic recipe for beginners that’s a bit middle-of-the-road.

I was wrong.

The buttermilk and garlic trick is a game changer, bringing a LOT more flavor than I anticipated and elevating a pretty simple recipe to something that tastes very special.

Also, this IS a very easy recipe to pull off. If you can manage to not burn water, you can totally make this.

This is also an easy recipe in terms of equipment. As long as you have a couple of pots and a knife, the only “specialty” equipment you need is a potato masher. Basically just a metal or plastic grid with a handle on it that will allow you to mash stuff up. If you don’t already have one, grab this one from Amazon. Oxo makes good stuff and potato mashers are pretty handy to have for a surprising variety of things.

This recipe goes pretty fast. It uses 4 russets and 8 red potatoes. You peel and chop the russets and chops the red potatoes leaving the peels intact. Throw them all in a pot, add water and salt, and boil until tender. Meanwhile, add some peeled garlic to a small saucepan with cream and buttermilk and heat.

Once the potatoes are done, it’s really just a matter of drain, add the dairy, and mash. Like I said, pretty simple recipe. Something about the combination of buttermilk and garlic really does something amazing for flavor though. Rich, tangy, garlicky and the consistency is absolutely perfect for me. Smooth from the russets with little chunks of the reds in there for a little bit of texture so you aren’t just eating a totally smooth paste.

I served mine with some very basic fried pork chops that I just kinda improvised. We’re currently semi stuck at home due to a massive winter storm, and that’s what I could make without going to the store.

Check out the original recipe on