Garlic & Jalapeno Sweet Potato Mash

Mashed potatoes get spruced up with tangy buttermilk and the smoky flavor of roasted garlic and jalapeno peppers. These potatoes make a great side dish for just about any fall meal, but watch out; they might just steal the show!

Garlic & Jalapeno Sweet Potato Mash

1-2 jalapeno peppers, stem and seeds removed and sliced*

8 cloves garlic, peeled

1 teaspoon olive oil

2 pounds sweet potatoes and yukon gold potatoes (that is about 6 small or 4 medium potatoes total)

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 and 1/3 cup lowfat or nonfat buttermilk

1-2 teaspoons salt

Preheat oven or toaster oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Place jalapeno and garlic in the center of a square of aluminum foil or parchment and drizzle with olive oil. Fold the little package closed (if using parchment, fold over and roll it up along the sides to seal). Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, remove and let cool.

To prepare the potatoes while the jalapeno and garlic mixture is roasting, peel and quarter the potatoes. Make the sweet potato pieces slightly larger since they cook more quickly than the yukon golds.

Place potatoes in a 2 quart saucepan and add cold water to just cover the surface of the potatoes. Cover, bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered for 20 minutes, or until a knife slides easily into a potato. Drain potatoes and place back in the saucepan.

Add the roasted jalapeno and garlic to the pan along with 2 tablespoons butter, 1 and 1/3 cups buttermilk and 1 teaspoon salt. Mash with a potato masher until no large pieces are left. Taste, add more salt if needed. Either mix with spoon or hand mixer on low speed until desired consistency is reached.

Serves 4-6. Some chopped fresh herbs or a drizzle of herb oil (basil or cilantro) make them even better!

*The number of peppers you use is up to you. Best to taste one before roasting so you know how strong they are. After roasting, add them into the mashed potatoes a bit at a time until you get the heat level you want. You could also serve them on the side and let each person add them to their own potatoes.

Vegan Option:

Substitute olive oil or another vegetable oil for the butter and 1 cup to 1 and 1/3 cups vegetable broth for the buttermilk.