Wasabi and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

 

This recipe was inspired by a visit to Julia Child's kitchen at the Smithsonian's American History Museum. Just outside the exhibit, a TV runs an infinite loop of Julia's old cooking show. When I heard her describe her method of making mashed potatoes with 2 whole heads of garlic, I swooned. The garlic sweetens as it cooks. I gave the flavor profile an Asian twist by adding wasabi and sesame oil. Because I was making this with a broad audience in mind, the recipe calls for just enough wasabi to add flavor without heat. You may want to add more. As Julia says, you may be tempted to use less garlic, but you will regret it.

What you will need

2 heads garlic

4 tablespoons sesame oil

7 medium Yukon Gold potatoes (approx. 2 1/2 cups), peeled and quartered

1/2 teaspoon salt, plus a generous pinch for the potato water

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper

2 teaspoons wasabi powder (or more to taste), mixed with an equal amount of water

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