You can't have Thanksgiving without potatoes. Maybe even two or three types. But it seems like mashed potatoes are a cornerstone Thanksgiving dish, and though you can doctor them up a bit with roasted garlic or chives or cheese, they're still just mashed potatoes.
This year, we tried something different. Smashed potatoes, in colors! No more bland white bowl on the table. Plus, you can do a lot more work before the day, making Thanksgiving just a wee bit simpler. Winner in my book! Next year, I think I'll experiment topping them with chives and a sharp and dry grated cheese.
5 pounds of baby (3-4" size) potatoes, in different colors; mine were Yukon Golds, reds and blues
1/2 stick of butter
1/4 cup of olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Day 1: Boil the potatoes in heavily salted water until tender when pierced with a fork. Drain. Cool and refrigerate.
Day 2: Gently smash each potato with the bottom of a glass until it cracks and splits but is still in (mostly) one piece. Transfer to a baking dish and repeat until all the potatoes are in a single layer (you may need more than one dish).
Melt the butter in a small bowl or pan, add the olive oil and garlic, and hold over gentle heat until the garlic has thoroughly scented the butter and oil. Then pour over the potatoes in the baking dish and salt and pepper to taste.
About an hour before dinnertime, you're ready to bake!
Bake at 450 degrees for about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are really sizzling, and then flip them and give them another 20 minutes. You should start to see the edges crisp up and turn golden brown.
Serve while still hot, topped with herbs, cheese, more salt and pepper, vinegar... the possibilities are endless!