It's an entirely clunky name for a dish, but on a cold October night, this is perfect comfort food. I'm a fan of Yukon golds for mashed potatoes; I find most other types a bit mealy. The caramelized onion crème fraîche adds a rounded sweetness to the potatoes.
We're currently in Vermont and there's snow on the ground. The original plan was to show me a New England fall. Instead, I am entering New England winter. I am thinking there's going to be lots of stews, risottos and braised foods this week.
But first, there must be hot chocolate.
Caramelized Onion Crème Fraîche Mashed Potatoes
1 medium Spanish or Vidalia onion, halved and sliced thin
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 T sugar
4 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled, sliced 1 inch thick
1/2 cup crème fraîche (or combine 1/4 cup sour cream and 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream)
Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan. When it stops foaming, add the onions and cook over medium high heat, stirring frequently, making sure the onions are coated with butter. Stir in the sugar. It will take about 15 minutes for the onions to soften and start to brown. Be careful not to let onions burn.
When the onions are caramelized, transfer them to a food processor with the crème fraîche (incidentally, to make crème fraîche, combine equal parts sour cream and heavy whipping cream in a glass, non reactive bowl; cover with plastic and leave out overnight. Use within 1 week and keep refrigerated) and puree. If the mix is too thick or pasty, add in more crème fraîche until smooth.
Bring a pot of water to boil. Add potatoes and cook until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork. Drain.
Use a whisk or potato masher to mash the potatoes with the caramelized onion crème fraîche.