Every so often, chefs rediscover the delights of browning butter and putting it on things to eat. Brown butter potatoes are all the rage this season, and a number of magazines have featured recipes.
Theoretically, brown butter potatoes involves little more than browning butter, blending a little into the potatoes and saving a bit of butter for serving. That little more is a spot of crème fraîche, which gives these potatoes a delightful flavor, and a creamy texture.
- 3½ pounds red or yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup milk
- ¼ cup crème fraîche
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the potatoes over moderate heat until tender, about 25 minutes. Drain well. Return the potatoes to the pot and cook over high heat for 1 minute to dry them out slightly. Pass the potatoes through a ricer and return them to the pot.
In a small saucepan, cook the butter over moderate heat until the milk solids turn dark golden, about 4 minutes. Add all but 2 tablespoons of the brown butter to the potatoes along with the milk and crème fraîche and stir well. Season with salt and stir over moderate heat until hot. Drizzle the remaining brown butter over the potatoes and serve.
MAKE AHEAD The mashed potatoes can be refrigerated overnight and rewarmed in the oven, covered with foil.