More than 1 million home cooks rely on Cook’s Illustrated magazine to provide trusted recipes that work, honest equipment reviews and ingredient taste tests, and time-saving kitchen tips. Published by the hosts of America’s Test Kitchen television series, Cook’s Illustrated is known for an almost fanatical approach to creating the best recipes for the home cook’s favorite foods. To do this, they test every recipe 20, 30, sometimes up to 100 times in their own 2,500 square foot test kitchen where they make the mistakes so you don’t have to. They also test and recommend which kitchen equipment is the best to use, which supermarket ingredients really make a difference and which techniques work best for the home cook. And because Cook’s Illustrated is advertising free, you can trust their objective ratings to identify what products are worth your money and which to avoid. Subscribe to Cooks Illustrated here, or sign up for the Perfectly Plated Sweepstakes for the chance to win $5,000 in merchandise from Ballard Designs.
We started with potatoes, butter, and whole milk and opted for Yukon Golds for their buttery flavor and supersmooth texture. To get truly complex garlic flavor, we added it in three ways. We incorporated garlic paste sautéed in butter for clean, mellow flavor; a very small amount of raw garlic paste for assertiveness; and a small amount of rehydrated garlic powder also sautéed in butter for complex, lightly roasted flavor. In order to maximize the garlic powder’s flavor, we first bloomed it in water to reactivate the enzyme that produces the compound allicin, which is responsible for garlic’s characteristic flavor.
- 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and sliced ½ inch thick
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 2 pieces
- ½ teaspoon garlic, minced to paste
- 1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (1/2 cup)
- Salt and pepper
- ⅓ cup warm whole milk
- Place potatoes in medium saucepan and add cold water to cover by 1 inch. Bring water to simmer over medium-high heat. Adjust heat to maintain gentle simmer until paring knife can be slipped into and out of center of potatoes with no resistance, 18 to 22 minutes. Drain potatoes.
- While potatoes cook, combine garlic powder and ¼ teaspoon water in small bowl. Melt butter in 8-inch skillet over medium-low heat. Stir in ⅜ teaspoon garlic paste and garlic powder mixture; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant and golden, about 1 minute. Transfer butter mixture to medium bowl and thoroughly stir in Parmesan, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and remaining ⅛ teaspoon garlic paste.
- Place now-empty saucepan over low heat; set ricer or food mill over saucepan. Working in batches, transfer potatoes to hopper and process. Using rubber spatula, stir in butter-Parmesan mixture until incorporated. Stir in warm milk until incorporated. Season with salt and pepper to taste; serve immediately.