Baked PotatoesBaked Potatoes

At my house we are a meat and potatoes kind of family. My son especially loves potatoes and will eat them anyway I fix them.  I know baked potatoes are very easy to make, but sometimes we need a little direction in the basics when we are first starting out.  So I have decided to include how to make baked potatoes in my blog. I hope you enjoy them!

There are several ways to make a baked potato.  You can microwave them if you are in a hurry. My Mom made me a potato bag that allows to you make a great baked potato. Most microwaves even have a baked potato setting.  I am going to focus on my family’s favorite baked potatoes today.  We don’t eat the skin so my family likes a tough skin that allows the potato to be mashed inside the skin with some butter, salt, and pepper.

I like to put a little flavoring on the outside of my potatoes.  Why would I do this when we don’t eat the skin? I have no idea. The kids love them though and think it is an extra treat when I make them this way.  Maybe they just like licking the salt off their fingers after touching the outside.  I really don’t know, but don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.

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I usually put a bit of parchment paper down on my pan. It is not necessary, it just makes clean up a little easier. Scrub your potatoes clean, dry them, and then spray the potato with a little olive oil. I’m sure you could brush it on as well. Then I throw on a little salt and pepper and parmesan cheese. I will often take a fork and spear each potato in the center just to let the steam out. I had one explode in my oven once and don’t care to repeat the experience. Then I put them in the oven at about 375 degrees for 1 and 1/2 hour. This can of course be adjusted. If you are cooking something else at say 350 degrees then cook for about 2 hours. cooking time may also depend on the size of your potatoes. It is not an exact science but the skin will feel tough and the inside will feel soft when it is fully cooked.

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This is what mine look like after cooking. Today I only made 4. Usually I will make a whole pan full so that I can peel, slice, and fry up the remainder for another meal. I don’t know why but fried potatoes made from previously baked potatoes are the best. I like to fry them with a little butter and green onion chopped up fine.

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After your potato cools a little bit, slice it down the middle with a knife. Then take your fork and loosen the insides away from the skin and mash the insides with your fork. Add whatever toppings you like. We are salt, pepper, and butter people. My Dad likes cheese and bacon bits on his, and some people like sour cream. So add whatever makes you happy and enjoy!

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