Twice Baked Potatoes
This is an elegant way to serve flavored potatoes. Prepare them up to two days ahead, and then bake them whenever you wish, easy as pie.
INGREDIENTS | SERVES 4–6
- 4 large potatoes
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons chopped onion or shallot
- ⅓ cup sour cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup shredded Gruyère or Swiss cheese
- 1 egg, beaten, divided
- About ¼ cup milk
Bake the potatoes and allow to cool until they can be handled. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small skillet and cook the onion until softened, about 3 minutes. Halve the potatoes lengthwise and scoop out the flesh, being careful to leave a ¼- to ½-inch shell.
In a large bowl, combine the potato, sour cream, onions and butter, salt and pepper, and half of the beaten egg. Mash them together thoroughly, then beat by hand or with an electric mixer, adding as much milk as necessary for a smooth consistency, slightly firmer than mashed potatoes. Stir in the cheese.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mound the mixture in the potato shells (for extra beauty, pipe the mixture in through a pastry bag with a wide star tip).
Whisk the remaining egg with a teaspoon of water, and brush the tops of the stuffed potatoes with this mixture.
Bake them for 30 minutes, until nicely browned on top and hot all the way through.
Mashed Potato No-No's — What Makes 'Em Gluey, Watery, or Lumpy
Here are some troubleshooting tips for common mashed potato problems:
Lumpy mashed potatoes can be avoided by fully cooking the potatoes, so they mash very easily with a potato masher or stiff wire whip.
Leaving the potatoes in their cooking water after they're done may result in watery, washed-out tasting mashed potatoes. Most chefs drain them well after cooking, put them back in the pot, and place the pot over a low burner to cause excess water to steam off.
Too much mashing, or using the wrong (i.e., very starchy, like an Idaho russet) type of potato can result in gummy, gluey consistency.