Dressed-up jacket potatoes

2010-02-19 15:02


Heat in the kitchen: minimal

Level of effort: slicing, grating and rubbing

IF you can get nice baking potatoes half the taste battle’s won and

how you cook them helps.

Wash potatoes then dry them well. Prick the skin a few times and

rub with a little olive oil and sea salt. Put them in the oven at about 180°C

for two hours to get the skins crispy. Medium-sized potatoes are best. Allow

one-and-a-half or two per person.

When done, cut a cross in each and stuff with a knob of butter. The

fillings below are all cold. After all it’s summer, and this also ensures your

kitchen time consists of putting the oven on, putting the potatoes in and

ignoring them for two hours.

Sour Cream and Chives:

Simple but a goodie with freshly chopped chives folded into smooth

sour cream and topped with crispy bacon bits (buy them ready done or zap streaky

bacon in the microwave).


Finely dice ripe tomatoes, cucumbers (the small Israeli ones are

best), red onion, handfuls of fresh curly leaf parsley, ground cumin to taste,

generous amounts of fresh lemon juice, olive oil and season with salt and

pepper. This Moroccan-inspired filling can be finished off with a dollop of


Basil Pesto and Parmesan:

Buy your favourite basil pesto (or make it a few days in advance),

add extra olive oil and freshly grate ­plenty of Parmesan cheese. Season with

salt and pepper. Vary this one with sun-dried tomato pesto to add some colour to

your lunch table.

Tzatziki with mint:

This Greek meze favourite of ­cucumber in yogurt is the perfect

potato filling. Make sure you buy (or make) one with lots of garlic and then

chop up some fresh mint to sprinkle over the top. Also, make sure you use

full-cream natural ­flavoured yogurt. Fat-free stuff should never be shared with


Cottage cheese and biltong:

This one is a South African original. Use full-cream chunky cottage

cheese, season well with salt and pepper and buy a stick of peri-peri biltong.

Chop it up and stir into the cottage cheese.

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