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Cheesy Potato Snowballs with Roasted Red Pepper Buttermilk Ranch

Serves 10 servings

Originally aired

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups mashed potatoes, use leftovers or made fresh from 4 medium potatoes
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 bunch scallions, sliced
  • 2 eggs
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups dried potato flakes
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • For the dip:
  • 6 roasted red peppers from the jar or roasted red pepper puree
  • 1/2 cup yogurt, preferably Greek-style yogurt
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 1 palmful chives, chopped
  • 1 large handful parsley, chopped
  • 1 large handful dill, chopped
  • 1 small palmful cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of one lemon
  • Dash of hot sauce
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
PREPARATION

Pile the potato balls on a platter and serve the red pepper ranch alongside for dipping.

In a large bowl, combine cooled mashed potatoes, cheddar cheese, scallions, eggs, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix well.

Pour the potato flakes into a shallow dish and place next to your bowl. With a small ice cream scoop or teaspoon, dollop the potato mixture on the potato flakes. Roll them around in the potato flakes so each mashed potato ball gets thoroughly coated (they should each be about an inch in diameter). Set the coated potato balls aside on a plate and repeat with the rest of the potato mixture (you should have about 30 pieces). Once your potatoes are all rolled they can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 2 days.

For the dipping sauce, puree up the roasted red peppers in a food processor or blender. Pour the pepper puree into a medium-size bowl then add the yogurt, buttermilk, garlic, herbs, lemon juice, hot sauce, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir to combine. (Since the dip only gets better as it sits, you can make it up to 3 days in advance and store it in the fridge. Just be sure to take it out a few minutes before serving to take the chill off.)

In a medium-size pot over medium-high heat, add enough canola oil to go two inches up the side of the pot. Let the oil heat up to 375F -- when you put a ball in, it should sizzle but not get dark right away. Fry the potato balls a few at a time, making sure not to crowd the pot. Once they are golden brown on all sides, remove with a slotted spoon and place them on a paper towel-lined plate to drain the excess oil. Repeat until all the potato balls are fried. (If you aren't serving them right away or are bringing them somewhere, pack them up gently or place them on a baking sheet. Right before serving, place them in a 400F oven, uncovered, for about 5 minutes or until they are heated through and crisp.)

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