Archived in 2022

Originally posted on 15 Dec 2011

I’m posting this one for a friend who’s asked for the recipe twice now, once after each time she’s had this dish at my house. It’s a simple recipe that people always enjoy, so you’ll get a high return on your time investment for this one.

This is named Paul Potatoes after my brother, who loved it and frequently asked Mom to make it. In truth, though, this isn’t exactly the same recipe that Mom used to make for us. I’ve modified it in a way which takes it from “really tasty” to “decadently deadly.” It is no exaggeration to say that this recipe is—quite literally—not for the faint of heart. Considering the amount of saturated fat it contains it should be eaten in moderation. And perhaps with a"defibrilator</a> close at hand.

Alright, now that we’ve gotten the public service announcement out of the way we can proceed to the good stuff…


  • Pot for cooking the potatoes
  • Potato masher or ricer (your preference)
  • Small saucepan for the onions
  • An oven-proof dish or pot


  • 2.5 lbs russet potatoes
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 6 Tbl butter (unsalted preferred)
  • 8 oz (1 cup) sour cream
  • 6 scallions, finely chopped (incl. green tops)
  • 8 oz (1/2 lb) extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


  1. Heat oven to approximately 350°F.
  2. Cook the potatoes as you prefer for mashed potatoes. For some of you that may mean steaming in their jackets. For me it’s peeling them, cutting into one inch chunks then boiling/straining them.
  3. While the potatoes are cooking, melt the butter in the small saucepan. Add the onions and simmer on low until they’re soft and translucent.
    • Mash or rice the potatoes. As with all mashed potatoes, don’t overdo it and make a big, gloppy, gluey mess.
    • Gently mix the potatoes, onion/butter mixture, sour cream, scallions and cheese.
    • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    • Place the mixture into the oven-proof dish. Spread it out all nice because, well, that’s how these things are done.
    • Cover the dish (foil will do fine) and place in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour or until it’s all bubbly around the edges.</ol> Notes

    • Please only use russet potatoes for this. Yukon Gold, Red Bliss and all those other waxy potatoes will get you cheese and onion-flavored wallpaper paste.
    • When the dish comes out of the oven it will contain POTATO MAGMA. Treat it with respect or you’ll get what you deserve. You have been warned.
    • This recipe scales well. Want to make a double batch? Just double the recipe.
    • As if this dish weren’t evil enough on its own, if you happen to have any leftovers they’re particularly lovely the next day if formed into patties, covered in panko and fried in butter (or bacon fat). I mean, that’s what I’ve heard anyway…

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