These potatoes have the most beautiful butter yellow color from the addition of squash to the mash. There are so many variations on mashed potatoes that when I ran across this one, I knew it was worth trying. Besides that, it was a Martha Stewart recipe and I usually can rely on her recipes to be good. The squash that is used in the recipe is a buttercup squash.
It is very similar to an acorn squash but it’s flesh is a darker orange, which gives it a boost in Vitamin A and also colors the mashed potatoes with a golden hue. If you cannot find buttercup squash in your Supermarket, you could substitute butternut or acorn squash. The skin on the squash is very tough and peeling it was a time consuming process. Alternately you could split the squash lenthwise, remove the seeds and stringy pulp, place it cut side down in a casserole with a little water in it and bake it until the flesh is soft.
The amaretti part of the recipe is the topping. Amaretti are Italian almond cookies. Any crispy almond cookie will do. These are the cookies that were at my Publix Supermarket.
They make a very crispy topping for the casserole and do not taste too sweet. They would also be a great addition to a sweet potato casserole.
The verdict on this casserole is that it is a definite keeper and would make a great addition to the Thanksgiving table. It is also a good way to add to the nutritional value of mashed potatoes and it is visually appealing. It can also be assembled ahead of time which is a bonus for a harried cook.
MASHED SQUASH AND POTATOES WITH AMARETTI
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes (about 6 cups)
3 pounds buttercup squash (about 1 squash) peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 inch cubes (about 8 cups)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the baking dish
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
10 amaretti cookies, crushed into fine crumbs (about 3/4 cup)
1. Cover the potatoes with cold water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; add salt. Reduce heat to medium-high; cook the potatoes until soft, about 25 minutes. In another medium saucepan, cover the squash with cold water. Bring to a boil; add salt. Reduce heat to medium-high; cook until soft, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes and squash separately.
2. Force the potatoes through a ricer into a bowl. In a separate bowl, mash the squash with a potato masher; stir in the potatoes.
3. Bring 4 tablespoons butter and the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and the nutmeg. Season with pepper. Stir the cream mixture and 1/3 cup cheese into the potato mixture. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. Spoon into a buttered 10 inch round baking dish.
4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter to the crushed cookies and stir to combine. Sprinkle the cookies over the casserole and add the remaining cheese. Bake until the topping is just browned, 20 to 30 minutes.
We are enjoying the mild weather in Florida. The view from our house is nothing like what we have in the mountains, but I have to admit, we have the best of both worlds.