Twice-baked Potatoes

My husband used to work on a potato farm for a few years in his mid-teens.  I, was a city girl, who did not grow up eating a lot of meat and potatoes, but a variety of dishes from a variety of cultures.

The first time I went to visit the family who he lived with, I also went over to the farm, which was located very close by.  The grand-mother of the family made the men their main meal, which, on a farm, was at lunch. I went over about 11:00 a.m. one day and I must say, I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much food already prepared at 11:00 a.m. of the day.  She had meat, and fresh bread, and salad, and, of course, potatoes.  When they all came in around noon, the table was laid out for a feast of feasts.  The working men eagerly ate this table of home-made, substantial food, had a little break, and back to work they went.

I had never seen potatoes around so often.  But this family had them for most meals, and for awhile, my husband even joked that they even had ‘dessert potatoes’, because often they’d rather have a second portion of potatoes than of dessert.  They are such a versatile food, and always economical, so it’s easy to see why.

To this day, my husband can make a mean mashed potato side dish.  He whips the potatoes by hand up in a frenzy.  They come out with the perfect texture: not mushy, not lumpy.  It’s one of the dishes that I always leave to him to make.

I do love making these twice-baked potatoes though, they can be made a hundred different ways.  If I get to cater a dish to my likes, you will either find mushrooms or cheese or onions or all three items. And in this one? Blue cheese.  Look at it on top of those potatoes.  Gorgeous.

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As I was making these, I also thought why not make another kind, as my family doesn’t love blue cheese as much as I do. That’s where the greek-style potatoes came in.

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I had a tub of Tzatziki dip in my fridge and added that to the potatoes, and sprinkled some green onions on top.  So easy. So good.

When you’re too busy focusing on the main parts of the meal, you can still whip up a delicious side in a fraction of the time.  Or, make it the main event.  The humble potato would be thrilled to be the center of attention.

 

INGREDIENTS:

BLUE CHEESE TWICE-BAKED POTATOES

  • 2 potatoes
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/8 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese, crumbled
  • bacon and green onions (optional)

TZATZIKI TWICE-BAKED POTATOES

  • 2 potatoes
  • 1/2 cup tzatziki sauce
  • green onions (optional)

 

DIRECTIONS:

Bake potatoes in a 400 degree oven for about one hour, or until fork tender, let cool.  (Can do this early in day or even day before).  Slice the tops off the potatoes, about 1/8 of the potato.  Scoop out cooked potato but leave a little in the bottom or else it will fall apart when cooking.  In a separate bowl, mash potatoes.  Add remaining ingredients and mash further.  Season with salt and pepper.  Spoon mashed potatoes into potato shells and top with bacon and/or onions and more blue cheese if you wish.  Bake for 20 minutes or until warmed through.