Well, this dinner ruined my night of World of Warcraft that I had planned…but it was worth it because it was really rather tasty. See, I had planned for this easy-elegant quick sort of dinner that I could throw together in just a few minutes in between playing. It turned out to be little more complicated. And a lot more time-consuming! While the twice baked potatoes were delicious, they were a lot of work for something, that well, frankly, could taste just a good if I’d made a simple loaded baked potato – and those are a LOT easier and less involved.
I even skipped a step or two doing these and modified the recipe slightly. Don’t we all do that? I mean, it called for bacon in it and while I love bacon just as much (if not more) than most carnivores, I didn’t want to fuss with frying up bacon. And I didn’t do the step that called for cooking the hollowed out potato interiors in the oven to just crisp them up. Mine were already pretty crispy from baking and I just wanted to get to the eating part.
I’ve always seen twice baked potatoes on menus and thought they would somehow…taste significantly different than just a really good baked potato…but…they really didn’t. Good, yes, but nothing ground breaking. As part of the rest of the meal, we had some beef kebobs and grilled mushrooms. The kebobs were easy to marinate but no matter how long we ever soak the skewers for…they always end up burning once we put them on the grill. The meat, while extremely tasty, was chewy. This is what I get for buying a cheap cut. Eh, what are you going to do. Still tasted good (marinade of olive oil, wine, a splash of liquid smoke, paprika, garlic powder, rosemary, salt and pepper).
But the best and easiest part of the meal was the griled mushrooms. You just toss them in a little olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic powder…then you could skewer them too, or just put them in one of those grill baskets like we have. They grilled up smokey, garlicy, buttery and delicious.
So…even though this post was supposed to be about this weeks new (to me) recipe (Twice Baked Potatoes), the best part of the meal was totally the mushrooms. You must make those!
Twice Baked Potatoes
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated…sorry amounts are not exact (I changed a lot and I rarely measure when I cook).
2 baking potatoes, cooked fully in oven
1 package broccoli floweretes, (steamed until knife inserts easily in stems – after I steamed them, I tossed them with salt, pepper and a little garlic powder…each part of a whole should be seasoned).
about 1 c. grated cheddar cheese
splash of milk, cream or half&half
about 1/4 c. butter
Salt & pepper, to taste
1. Oven still on from baking the potatoes, should be at 400^F.
2. Slice potatoes in half, scoop innards of them out, into a bowl, leaving a little bit of potato fluff between the inside and the skin. In the bowl, mash the potatoes, then add in the butter and a splash of milk or cream or whatever dairy product you have on hand. You could even use sour cream if you had it. Fold in the cheese and broccoli.
3. Spoon the filling back into the potatoes so that they look like large mounded potatoe skins. If you managed to restrain yourself you can sprinkle the tops with MORE cheese but I forgot and didn’t. But it would’ve tasted good. If I ever make these again, I’ll sprinkle tops with extra cheese.
4. Bake for 10 minutes until tops are just starting to get golden. Serve!