What Is Aligot And What Does It Taste Like?

Its full name is Pommes Aligot — and it is the absolute best version of mashed potatoes that you've never had. Stretchy, immensely cheesy, and slightly glutinous, aligot is a food unlike any other. Pronounced "ah-lee-go," according to Kitchn, this dish is especially scrumptious on a bitterly cold day, helping you to warm up from the inside out. This super cheesy mashed potato blend (and rather genius idea) is said to have been created by monks serving hungry pilgrims in southwest France (via The Guardian).

When it comes to actually making this meal for yourself, Atlas Obscura says "for each pound of potato, true aligot calls for about a cup of Tomme," which is a nutty, mild French cheese. Unfortunately, Tomme isn't the easiest cheese to find, so Gruyere or even mozzarella can easily serve as a substitute (via Kitchn). When it comes to the potatoes you should use, Yukon Golds are an especially desirable variety.

What's in aligot?

It goes without saying, but aligot is certainly not the lightest dish; it is pretty much the definition of "stick-to-your-ribs." It is also a perfect option for a potato side for Thanksgiving or Christmas — but it's equally as delicious on any random Wednesday. The decadent side works incredibly well with almost any protein or main dish entree, making it the perfect "comfort food."

When it comes to whipping this up in your own cooking space, Kitchn notes that a ricer or food mill is the perfect tool to have on hand when making aligot, ensuring a perfectly smooth, light consistency prior to mixing in the copious amounts of cheese. In addition to the potatoes and cheese, most recipes also call for butter, thyme, salt, garlic, and freshly ground black pepper, but obviously the potatoes and cheese are the essential components of this iconic side dish. Some even say that the dish veers more toward fondue than it does a potato side. Certain recipes even include a range of cheese, just in case the suggested amount is too rich — but for true cheese fanatics, there is no such thing.

Aligot is also the epitome of the buzzy "cheese pull" — so be sure to get ready to take a photo for Instagram!