Adding farmer cheese to creamy mashed potatoes gives them a nice tangy flavor; crunchy bits of bacon make this dish taste even better. Chef John Besh advises seeking out artisanally made bacon. Slideshows: Holiday Mashed Potato Recipes
Put the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Add salt and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately high heat until tender, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook the bacon in 2 batches over moderate heat, turning once, until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes per batch. Drain the bacon on paper towels and coarsely chop it.
Drain the potatoes and return them to the pot. Shake the pot over moderately high heat for about 20 seconds to dry the potatoes. Pass the potatoes through a ricer into a large pot. Add the butter, cream, cheese, chives and bacon and stir well. Season with salt and pepper and serve.
The finished potatoes can be reheated in a microwave oven at high power at 1-minute intervals; stir the potatoes occasionally.