During the holidays, the Mr. and I were invited to Christmas Eve dinner at a friend's house - it was a small gathering, but really fun and special, and I was really looking forward to the dinner. When I asked what I could bring, I was told, quite enthusiastically, "Potatoes!!" Our host LOVES potatoes. L.O.V.E.S. potatoes. Now while I like potatoes as much as the next guy (well...maybe not quite as much...but I do like them), I really don't cook or eat them very often. I can dig into a sweet potato any time - but I just don't seem to eat potatoes very often. The Mr. has an intense dislike for anything with a mealy consistency, and I think he'd encountered one too many mealy potaotes in his life before we met - so it's not a food he requests very often (unless it's fries - in which case he can get them at a restaurant!). So I panicked for a split second, since I don't have any "family favorite" potato recipes in my files (unless you count latkes, which just weren't going to work for this meal). But I figured it couldn't be too difficult to find a tasty potato dish to make - I mean, potatoes + cheese + sour cream + butter = you really can't go wrong. I tossed around the idea of a gratin dish or something along those lines, but I don't own a mandolin, and didn't really feel like slicing a zillion potatoes. Someone suggested mashed potatoes - everyone loves mashed potatoes! But I didn't want to just do plain jane mashed potatoes. I wanted something a bit more decadent, a bit more special for our Christmas Eve dinner. So I came across this mashed potato casserole with sour cream and chives from The New York Times, and figured I'd give it a shot. Not surprisingly, it was absolutely amazing and delicious and a huge hit at the dinner - I mean, can you really go wrong with multiple sticks of butter, aged Parmesan cheese, sour cream, and bread crumbs?! I think not. So it's not like I took a huge leap here - but in the land of mashed potatoes, this casserole is kinda special. It's not an every day type of recipe - like I said, there are copious amounts of butter and sour cream at play here - but this is a perfect choice for a special dinner. It makes a LOT of potatoes - scale down the recipe if you're cooking for just a few people. But rest assured that if you need to impress with some potatoes, this is a great recipe to have in your arsenal. And yes, I realize that most of us (myself included) are attempting to detox from the holidays with some healthier, lighter meals, but I really did feel the need to share this recipe with you all, just in case the opportunity arose to impress some friends with a kick-ass potato casserole. So keep this recipe tucked away - you may not need it for a while, but the next time someone asks you to make potatoes you'll be glad you have it on hand!