- Active time:30 min
- Start to finish:1 3/4 hr
You and your guests will be utterly charmed when you see how easily mashed potatoes can be transformed into a gaggle of ghosts. Simply form them into pointy mounds and then personify—no, make that “ghostify” —them with seed “eyes.” Don’t be surprised if these become a new family must-have for Halloweens to come.
large boiling potatoes (preferably white-fleshed)
stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
large egg yolks
Nigella seeds (sometimes mislabeled “black onion seeds”) or caraway seeds for garnish
Peel and quarter potatoes, then cover with water in a 4-qt pot and season well with salt. Simmer, partially covered, until tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
While potatoes are simmering, heat butter and milk in a small saucepan until butter is melted. Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.
Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in middle.
Drain potatoes and force through ricer into a large bowl (or mixer bowl if using stand mixer). Beat in milk mixture, yolks, and 1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper with an electric mixer at low speed until combined.
Spread about one-third of potatoes in a buttered 1 1/2-qt shallow ovenproof dish. Transfer remaining potatoes to pastry bag. Pipe potatoes close together into 2 1/2- to 3-inch-high pointed mounds to form “ghosts” and garnish each mound with 2 seeds for “eyes.”
Bake until tips of ghosts are golden and potatoes are firm, 20 to 25 minutes.
- Potatoes can be piped into dish 1 day ahead and chilled, loosely covered with plastic wrap.