Potatoes are the all-round versatile vegetable, making it an easy food to prepare and many ways to prepare.
Baked potatoes and mashed potatoes are two such potato dishes. Baked potatoes are easy to prepare. Choose solid smooth russet potatoes with minimal blemishes. Store in pantry until ready to use.
- 2 large russet potatoes
- Cooking oil
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Using a vegetable brush, scrub potatoes under running water then rinse. Pat dry with paper towels. Using a fork, prick potatoes on all sides. Brush cooking oil all over potatoes, then sprinkle with salt. Place a sheet of aluminum foil on middle rack of oven then space potatoes several inches apart on foil. Bake for 1 hour.
To test for doneness, gently squeeze potato or stick a toothpick in potato. Remove potatoes from oven. To serve, using a sharp knife cut a slit from end to end of potatoes. Gently squeeze both ends of potato, then using fork fluff potato. Add butter, salt and black pepper. Serves 2. Top with the following choices:
- Shredded cheese
- Sour cream
- Minced chives
- Sliced green onions
- Bacon bits
For mashed potatoes, small russet, Yukon gold or red potatoes (not new red potatoes) make great tasting mashed potatoes. Thinly peel potatoes, making sure to remove all blemishes. Cut potatoes in half or one fourth making sure that potatoes are the same size, that way they will cook evenly.
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Old Fashioned Mashed Potatoes
- 6 to 8 potatoes (small russet, Yukon gold or red potatoes)
- Milk or cream
Using a vegetable peeler, peel potatoes, then cut halves or fourths. Place in a large pan of water, add about 1 teaspoon of salt.
Cook over medium heat uncovered until boiling, lower heat to low-medium. Cook until potatoes are tender, test my inserting a fork into a couple of the potatoes.
Carefully drain potatoes by using a colander. Place potatoes back into pan. Using a potato masher, crumbled potatoes evenly, then add butter and about 1/2 cup of milk or cream. Continue mashing potatoes, adding more milk or cream until potatoes are of a fairly smooth consistency. Potatoes should not be dry and crumbling or runny. Add salt and black pepper. Serves 4 to 6.
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