Place potatoes in a colander and rinse under cold water about 20 seconds. Transfer to a pot (6 quart or larger).
Cover potatoes with cold water by 1-inch. Set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.
Season with water with salt (I add 1 Tbsp) and let boil until potatoes are tender all the way through when pierced with a fork, about 10 - 15 minutes.
Near the end of potatoes cooking heat half and half and butter together in a microwave safe dish (I just use the glass liquid measuring cup it was measured in), or in a small saucepan on the stovetop, until very warm.
Drain potatoes well in colander set in sink.
Pass potatoes through a food mill or potato ricer back into pot or into a large bowl.**
Add warm half and half mixture and sour cream then gently stir with a wooden spoon or spatula just until combined, while seasoning with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Serve warm topped with butter or gravy.
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