Well, well, well…I was hoping it would happen. In our last column, we tackled meat (check out our Crowd-Sourced Barbecue Ribs on foodnetwork.com), and now we have potatoes! For these mashed potatoes, I asked for your thoughts on social media and you knocked it out the park with suggestions, tricks and secret ingredients. Your help was clearly needed because I love to mix my mashed potatoes with fresh rosemary and thought “who doesn’t?” To my surprise, the majority of people polled don’t! Instead, many of you prefer the oniony pop of fresh chives. (I admit that whenever rosemary shows up, it does take over the dish.) Sour cream is the most popular secret ingredient. It’s a simple way to bring zip to the earthy tubers and a smooth texture to the final dish. Speaking of texture, I must say I’ve never met a mashed potato texture I didn’t like — I’ll take them smooth, chunky and everything in between. Most of you prefer the middle ground, with a few lumps. Good thinking! To catch the next poll, follow me @SunnyAnderson on Twitter.
Put the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water by 1 inch; season with salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Drain well and return the potatoes to the pot.
Add the butter to the potatoes and mash with a potato masher or fork until well combined. Add the milk and sour cream and stir well; season with salt and pepper.
Transfer the mashed potatoes to a bowl and top with chives.