I’m having internet issues again this morning. You know how much fun that is.
It just hasn’t been the best week so far. Yesterday I discovered that the reason my baking times have been really off lately is because the top heat in our oven is broken. I know, big bummer.
At least now I know that my baking skills aren’t getting progressively worse. I was a little worried after burning the bottom of 3 batches of cookies while the tops were still dough and then ruining a pan of perfectly good caramel corn.
It is actually a very big toaster oven that has been performing fine as a temporary main oven until recently. I guess most toaster ovens aren’t expected to be as heavily used as this one was. When I say heavily used I mean every day, over and over. It’s tired.
So why do I do my baking in a toaster oven, you might ask? Well, it’s that or use the ancient, self-light oven that goes with the house we are staying in. The house we are moving out of this weekend.
My family and I have moved around a lot in the last few years. I could probably make a profession out of packing and moving big families. I ‘ve had lots of practice and I’m getting faster.
You can probably guess which room I am in charge of packing. Yep, the kitchen where I spend at least 50 percent of my life. Big families have big appetites, go figure.
Moving on to potato skins. These are so easy that they hardly qualify as a recipe. Have you ever had potato skins? I think I have at some point in my life but I have never made them before, and after making them I have no idea why. They’re genius! You get to have them and make mashed potatoes with the filling too! I feel so silly for never discovering how awesome these are until now.
I don’t know about you, but in my family there are lots of picky eaters that peel the skin off their baked potatoes and usually end up wasting half of the potato in the process. I can’t stand food waste and this always drives me crazy. Luckily the kids have no problem eating the skin when you turn it into a giant, soft potato chip and load it with bacon.
These are great for parties and get-togethers. I love the combination of the fresh thyme with the parmesan. Oh, by the way, you can add a bunch more toppings than the ones in the pictures. I did most of them like that but then I decided that you couldn’t tell what it was because it was so buried in toppings so I went light for the pictures. My brother, typical meat-loving teenage boy that he is, thought I forgot to put toppings on those. Of course, he’s the type that likes a little potato with his meat so his opinion isn’t always reasonable.
I was just happy that I managed to get these baked without them turning black. You totally have to try them!
- 6 medium baking potatoes (about 3 pounds)
- vegetable oil
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- 10 strips of bacon, cooked until crisp
- 4 ounces grated parmesan cheese
- 3 tablespoon fresh thyme (leaves only), chopped finely
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 C). Scrub potatoes and dry then peirce with knife in a few places and wrap in aluminum foil. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until soft when squeezed. Remove from oven and allow them to cool enough to handle.
- Cut them in half lengthwise and use a spoon to scoop out center leaving a little bit of flesh.You can make mashed potatoes with the rest, Yay!
- Brush both sides of potatoes with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and place potatoes face-down on lined baking tray.
- Bake for about 10 minutes until skins start to crisp then flip them over and bake for another 10 minutes.
- Remove from oven and top evenly with parmesan, thyme, bacon bits, and additional salt and pepper.
- Broil until cheese is melted, about 3 minutes.
- Serve hot.