This weekend we barbecued, and I use the term “we” loosely. Mike grilled burgers, hot dogs, and his delicious Foil Grilled Broccoli. While I sat outside with an Angry Orchard and watched. Once the guilt set in, I went back inside to see what I could contribute. I landed on Twice Baked Potatoes. My favorite is mashed potatoes, so here, we get the best of both worlds. It’s like a mashed potato in a baked potato…
This is one of my more laissez-faire recipes. Let’s be honest, there’s a lot of freedom to be had with any of my recipes. I like to season to my own likes, so I wouldn’t expect any different from you. Here, you can get very creative with different flavors. Different spices. Different toppings.
Preheat oven to 425°. Rinse and rub the potatoes to get them clean. Mike teases me about being stabby, and this step doesn’t help me save face at all. I stab the potatoes about 2-3 times on each side. Be sure to stab all the way through – but stab on a chopping block, please. I’ve nicked a finger a time or two, and it is scary.
A trick I like to do before I microwave the potatoes is to make sure they are soaking wet on the plate. I’ll even drip a little extra water over the top to make a small puddle on the plate. This will create more steam in the microwave and prevent the potatoes from drying out and shriveling. I hate when that happens. Microwave for 8-12 minutes.
The potatoes will be very hot, be careful when you transfer from the plate to your greased, foil-lined baking sheet. Bake potatoes for 15 minutes. Again, the potatoes will be very hot when you take them out of the oven, so let them cook until you can handle touching them.
Once you’re comfortable handling the potatoes, slice the tops off and scoop pulp into a bowl. Here is where you let the freedom come in to play. Want creamier pulp, add a tablespoon of sour cream. How about savory, throw in a bunch of chopped up bacon. Looking for intense flavor, use a ranch seasoning packet. My favorite is chopped up broccoli and cheddar. Whatever seasonings or add-ins you want, mix them in here.
Our little one loves skins. When we make these, she takes my tops. So I’ll brush the outside of potato skins with olive oil and season really well with salt and pepper to make them even better. Spoon pulp back into the skins. Use your palms to pack pulp back into the skins.
Bake another 15 minutes. Then, we Garnish! Pictured are our Twice Baked Potatoes with chopped green onion, bacon or cheddar cheese and parsley. But, the options are LIMITLESS! Have fun with it. Show me your different mix in and garnishing ideas – post on Instagram with #garnishinglife