My mom isn’t much of a cook, but one thing she taught me was yukon gold potatoes make the best mashed potatoes because of their flavor. When you grow up in the South, mashed potatoes are guaranteed to be on the dinner table at least once a week. So I took her advice and bought a bag of honey gold potatoes and organic kale to create a healthy version of the southern comfort classic. No butter here. Sorry Paula Deen.
Yukon gold potatoes weren’t available at the store so I found a bag of honey gold potatoes which I thought would be pretty similar. They did the trick. I always leave the skins on the potatoes for added nutrients and for texture contrast when mashed. However, you can peel the potatoes if you’d like. I also used lacinato kale aka “dinosaur kale”. I prefer it to the curly kind, but any variety of kale will work perfectly. Use a masher to mash those taters. You can use a hand mixer for smoother mashed potatoes, but I simply use a spoon and stir. The parmesan adds a nice salty, butter flavor without all of the fat and calories. The kale is sauteed with onion and garlic for even more flavor.
The bread crumbs and parmesan create a nice golden crust when baked. Mashed potatoes you can feel good about eating. You’re kids might even eat their greens too.
Baked Kale Mashed Potatoes
adapted from Giada’s Family Dinners
serves 4 to 6
A healthy approach to mashed potatoes with kale and no butter, but still full of flavor from the garlic and parmesan.
2 pounds yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup milk
1 1/4 cups freshly grated parmesan cheese
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 small onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 bunch kale, stemmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup vegetable broth
1 tablespoon whole wheat bread crumbs
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter an 8×8 baking dish.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook for 15 to 20 minutes until tender. Drain the potatoes. Return the potatoes to the same pot. Mash the potatoes with a masher. Add the milk. Stir until the potatoes are smooth and creamy (you can use an electric hand mixer if preferred). Stir in 1 cup of parmesan cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Leave the potatoes in the pot. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a large saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook the onion for about 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the kale and broth. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until wilted. Add the kale mixture to the mashed potatoes. Stir until combined. Transfer the potato mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese and bread crumbs over the potatoes. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
Bake uncovered for about 15 minutes until the top is golden. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.