I just finished peeling almost 5 pounds of potatoes.
Yes, Thanksgiving preparations have begun, even though Thursday’s feast will only be for 2 — Hubby Bryan and me.
And yet I still peeled 5 pounds of potatoes. And several days in advance?
You betcha! We love leftovers.
The potatoes are for one of my all-time favorite recipes from the “Mixing & Musing Cookbook.” Refrigerator Mashed Potatoes are a must-have for any of my family’s holiday meals, and it’s been that way for about as long as I can remember. Once my mom discovered this make-ahead version of mashed potatoes, she never made them any other way. And the beauty, especially for this year, is that the potatoes will stay good in the refrigerator for 10 days, hence the 5 pounds of spuds for only 2 of us.
If this sounds familiar to those who have followed this blog for a while, it’s because this is my annual attempt to win everyone over to the two best Thanksgiving recipes ever, at least in my opinion: Refrigerator Mashed Potatoes and Slow Cooker Stuffing.
By now, some of you are converts, but I know there are still many who have not given these two time-savers (and oven-space-savers in the case of the stuffing) a try. And the stuffing is not only a cinch to make in the slow cooker, it is also simply delicious.
So here, once again, are the two recipes. And this year, I’m throwing in a bonus dessert recipe. Personally, I’m not enamored of pumpkin pie, but this frozen version — which, again, can be made several days in advance — will please both pumpkin lovers and pumpkin detractors.
Refrigerator Mashed Potatoes
Peel 5 pounds (10 large) potatoes and cook in boiling salted water until tender; drain. Mash until smooth (no lumps).
Add 6 ounces cream cheese (or lower fat Neufchatel), 1 cup dairy sour cream (I prefer the light version or Greek yogurt), 2 teaspoons onion salt, 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Beat until light and fluffy. Cool. Cover and place in refrigerator.
May be used anytime within 10 days. Place desired amount in a greased casserole, dot with butter and bake in 350 degree oven until heated through, 30 to 60 minutes, depending on size of dish.
Slow Cooker Stuffing
In 1 cup butter, saute 1 cup chopped onion and 2 cups chopped celery. Remove mixture from stove and stir in 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning and 2 teaspoons dried sage.
In a large bowl, combine 12 cups dried bread pieces with the butter-vegetable mixture.
Beat 2 eggs and combine with 3 to 4 cups chicken broth; pour over bread and stir well to combine.
Place mixture in slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours. (I turn it up to high for about 1 hour in order to get the crispy stuff around the edges.)
Frozen Pumpkin Delight
Combine 3 cups graham cracker crumbs with 3/4 cup melted butter; press into a 9- by 13-inch pan. Freeze crust.
Combine 2 cups pumpkin, 2 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 cup brown sugar. Mix well. Add 2 quarts softened vanilla ice cream. Stir and pour over crust. Freeze. Let stand a short time before serving.
For sauce: Combine in double boiler 1/2 cup butter, 2 2/3 cups brown sugar 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1/2 cup cream. Cook over hot water 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Top each serving with some of this sauce and then a dollop of whipped cream. (Alternately, buy a jar of butterscotch sauce, heat in microwave and drizzle over top.)