Twice as Nice Baked Potatoes
Once is good, but twice is GREAT!
This recipe reminds me of the Schwiefler family and the first house my parents owned on Robinhood Drive in San Francisco, California. Roller skating and riding bikes on steep hills, block parties, sneaking off to the 'forest' on Mount Davidson to swing on the forbidden rope swing, and playing in houses that were still under construction. My childhood in the 1950s was pretty darn special ... and so are these potatoes!
The Schwieflers lived around the corner from us in a huge Spanish-inspired house that they were constantly adding to. The additions came as the family grew - there were finally eleven children in a home I loved to visit because, although massive, it was so comfortable and always filled with delectable aromas. First (and last) time I ever ate raisin pie, it was at the Schwiefler table ... and I liked it!
Marie Schwiefler taught me and her daughter, Margaret how to make twice baked potatoes when we were about nine years old. My mom was ill and Mrs Schwiefler thought it would be a lovely gesture to give mom some time off and not worry about feeding us for one night. It was a simple recipe - perfect for a couple of Brownies. I don't think it was more than butter, chives, and shredded cheese, but I had never tasted a more delicious potato in my young life!
Since that time I have added my own spin and they are a family favorite. Every time I make them I wonder why I don't do it more often - they are that good.
Following is my basic recipe. This is one you can get creative with by adding whatever sounds good to you, crumbled bacon, for instance!
I hope you enjoy!
- 2 large potatoes, baked
- ¾ cup Philadelphia Cooking Cream, flavor of your choice - I like the Savory Garlic
- ½ cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 cup green onions, finely sliced
- 2 Tablespoons sour cream
- ½ teaspoon dried parsley
- ½ teaspoon snipped chives
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 slices favorite cheese, sliced in half. Optional
- Bake the potatoes as you normally would and cool until they are easy to handle. It's best not to foil wrap the potatoes as this makes the skins a little tougher and easier to fill later.
- Slice the potatoes in half, lengthwise and scoop out taking care not to rip the skins. This can be done earlier in the day, but warm the potato before you start adding the other ingredients so it is easier to combine.
- In a large bowl add the potato, and the rest of the ingredients except the paprika and cheese slices. You can make the filling smoother or leave chunks of potato for texture. I like the texture - these aren't mashed potatoes!
- Fill each half potato skin with your mixture, approximately ½ - ¾ of a cup. There will be enough that you can mound it up a bit
- Place the filled potatoes into a lightly greased baking pan large enough to hold them.
- Add a halved slice of cheese, if desired. Sprinkle with paprika.
- Place in a preheated 350° oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
- Let stand 3 to 5 minutes before serving.