Caramelized onions and bacon add sweet and salty flavors into these creamy, dreamy bacon mashed potatoes.
Lately, I’ve been complaining about being busy, traveling for work a bunch, and generally having too many things to cram into each day. Well, last week, Eli got sick and BAM, everything came screeching to a halt. We ended up in the hospital for a 24-hour observation stay. He’s okay (just very prone to croup and the bad things that come with it), but he scared the living daylights out of us.
Everything got cancelled. Everyone got ignored, and I just got to focus on my baby for a little bit. We stayed home for a few days afterwards to let him rest, and I got lots of snuggles in. We watched a ton of Thomas the Train while sitting in a heap of blankets and his stuffed animals. I hate that I’m saying this (I might even regret it), but it felt luxurious. Getting to spend time with and actually focus on my boy felt like a luxury. Even though it was a result of him being so sick, I am still grateful for the chance to spend that downtime with him, with nothing else to do. Just typing that makes me sad, but it’s the truth. It’s the plight of working Moms everywhere, I think.
When we got back from the hospital, he was ready for a major nap. We laid him down, and I fled to the kitchen. Cooking is therapy for me and I needed to lose myself in something hands-on. I set out to make some comfort food for dinner. Mustard and beer braised pork ribs and these decadent, dreamy bacon mashed potatoes. I would proudly serve these mashed potatoes to the Queen of England, but that night, I served them to my little family and we felt a shred of normalcy again. And that was a very good thing!
- 1 small white onion, thinly sliced
- 3 tbsp butter (for caramelized onions in pan)
- 5 cups potatoes, peeled, diced and boiled or steamed until very soft (I used Ore Ida Steam and Mash from frozen section)
- 2/3 cup milk
- 3 tbsp butter, softened (to add to potatoes)
- 1/4 lb bacon, cooked and diced
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- Add onions and 3 tbsp butter into a large skillet. Saute on low-medium heat for 20-25 minutes, until onions are caramelized. Stir occasionally.
- In a large mixing bowl, add cooked potatoes, another 3 tbsp butter and milk.Mash gently until there are no lumps. Do not "puree."
- Add bacon, caramelized onions, cheese and pepper. Gently stir until combine.
- Taste. Add a pinch of salt if necessary. Serve.
- I personally think that the bacon adds enough salt for this dish, but if you need extra salt, add it in a pinch at a time.
- To speed the process, buy Ore Ida Steam and Mash Potatoes. They cook in the microwave in about 10 minutes and mash easily without lumps.
- If you'd like to use heavy cream, I'd recommend substituting the 2/3rd's cup of milk in equal parts cream and chicken broth.