Now there’s a catchy blog post! Its Potato Week this week (7-13 October 2013) so what better time to indulge my love of the spud. Must be my Irish roots that make me start sweating if our potato supplies start to run short. Not knowing it was Potato Week this week, I bought a 10K bag of Maris Pipers from Costco – I already had 2 bags of Baby New Potatoes in the cupboard but you can never have too many!
A dish that I can pretty much guarantee that all 3 girls and OH will demolish is the good old Loaded Potato Skin. I remember at one of our Bonfire Night street parties a couple of years ago, my friend, Kate bringing the most delicious Cheese & Onion potato skins. I asked her how she got them so soft and the answer was, her mum cooks the whole potatoes for at least 1.5 hours. I think where I had been going wrong and only getting mediocre potatoes was rushing their cooking.
- Wash and prick the skin of the potatoes and cook at 190C for between 1-1.5 hours on a baking tray.. If you are doing a lot of potatoes and they are quite big you will need at least 1.5 hours. I try to always do some if I’m cooking a cake – Just put your baking tray at the bottom of the oven. Don’t waste that hot oven!
- As soon as you can bear to touch them when they come out of the oven, chop them in two lengthways – they are easier to fill if they are flatter.
- Scoop out the insides and place in a pan. Add a generous splash of milk for each potato and mash well. If you are in need of a treat, add some double cream as a substitute for some of the milk – you won’t regret it! While you are mashing your middles you can put the shells back in the oven for a couple of minutes to crisp up further but I hardly ever bother)
- Add the cheese and the rest of the ingredients (Most of which you will have already sauteed)
- Add a generous scoop of the potato mix back into the shells – you will be amazed that you only just have enough mixture even though you have added loads to the mash.
- Put back in the oven and cook for another 15 minutes – They will be lovely and crispy on top. Enjoy!
There’s tons of combinations to a tasty Loaded Potato Skin…
- Good old Cheese and Onion – Chop the onions really finely & Sauté for at least 5-10 minutes until very soft. Red onions taste ok but look a bit grim. Mature cheddar is fine – you need something with a bit of taste. A generous sprinkling of black pepper is a must!
- Cheese and Bacon Lardons – Fatty ones are great. Fry them before adding to the potato. Mixing the potato with double cream makes these completely delicious. And quite heart-attack inducing!
- Cheese and Tuna – I’m not a fan of Tuna but the kids love it
- Red Pepper, Cheese, Onions and Mushrooms – Again make sure the vegetables are chopped really finely and saute before adding to the potato
- Steak and Onions – Snip really thin slices of beef and cook with finely chopped onions. Yum!
I’m on the search for more combinations – These are great picnic food and even better if you know someone is coming round for lunch. Much tastier than a buttie!
This post is an entry for #MarisPiperBritMums Linky Challenge sponsored by Potato Council for Potato Week 7 – 13 October, celebrating the varieties of potatoes and how we like to eat them. Learn more and find recipes at www.lovepotatoes.co.uk