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Recently I was looking for some different thrifty ideas for dinner meals, this one my family loves including my husband who is a big eater, "Baked Potato Night". I purchase some baking potatoes on sale, if they are big I plan on one per person the average amount spent is $1.50 to $2.00. I cook some broccoli which was on sale, shred some cheese, left over chicken (what ever sounds good), some times a salad with it. The average price for the whole meal is $4.00-4.50. It is very filling and relatively healthy (fiber, vegetables, protein.) Enjoy!
Preparing baked potatoes in a microwave takes far less time than baking them in an oven, but sometimes the wonderful texture of an oven baked potato is missing. Take the following steps to give microwave potatoes an oven baked texture.
Once you remove the potatoes from the microwave, wrap them in aluminum foil. Place them inside of an oven mitt for about ten minutes. If you don't have an oven mitt, you can roll the foil wrapped potatoes in a towel. When you unwrap the potatoes they will have the soft, fluffy texture of oven baked potatoes.
This also works with sweet potatoes.
By VeronicaHB from Asheboro, NC
When we have baked potatoes we often have some left over. I scoop out the insides and use it to thicken home-made soup. It adds a delicious flavour.
By Lucy from Oxford, UK
To bake potatoes faster, start them warming in microwave a minute or so to get them heated through and through. Pop in oven and they will bake faster for your meal. Really good for when you are barbecuing outdoors. They will be ready by the time the meat is done and your salad is made.
By Gladys H.
Potatoes, if boiled about 5 minutes before putting in a hot oven, will be thoroughly baked in about half the usual time.
Source: From an early 50's cookbook. Cover is missing so I don't know the name.
By Great Granny Vi from Moorpark, CA.
Forget "good" potatoes; make EXCELLENT baked potatoes. Using larger bakers, scrub clean and pierce several times with tines of fork or sharp paring knife.
I like the taste of potatoes better when they are baked in the oven, as opposed to the microwave; however, it takes ever so much more time to do it this way. If you are in a time-crunch, and want to hasten baking time, then place a well-scrubbed nail into the middle of each potato before you put them into the oven. The heat travels to the inside of the potato through the nail, causing the inside of the potato to heat up (and cook) faster. This method hastens the cooking time tremendously. Just check for doneness at an earlier time than you would normally. (I squeeze the potatoes to check for doneness, so I don't have a time-table for cooking x-number of potatoes; sorry!)
How do you make jacket potatoes? I need ingredients and method.
Although I have seen "cloth bags" to bake potatoes in the microwave, there is nothing like a real baked potato from either the oven or toaster oven.
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Tips for making good, baked potatoes. Post your ideas.
When baking potatoes in the oven, instead of just wrapping them in foil and placing in the oven. Have your sheets of tin foil ready. Wash your potatoes as normally. Dry them. Then rub a small amount of cooking oil over them, wrap in tin foil and place in the oven for 1 hr. The potatoes will have a much better taste, this way.
By T. H.
Here are two different ideas for baked potatoes. The first, try your slow cooker. Clean as normal, prick, and place in a greased slow cooker on low in the morning (for supper) or high at noon. They taste just like in the oven. The second idea is to wash your potatoes as normal, then roll them in coarse salt, such as sea salt. Bake on a cookie sheet at 450 for an hour. This will result in a crunchy, salted skin that some people prefer.
The way you describe making them will actually give you a steamed potato instead of a baked potato. Restaurants prefer to do them this way because they hold well and can be served a long time after they are cooked.
A true baked potato is baked in just the skin. If you like to add oil to the outside, you can do that too. Prick them a couple of times and just set them on the oven rack and bake away! If you use Russets, they'll be fluffy and delicious this way!
I love a crisp baked potato skin! Mmmmm! I wash and dry the potato run a metal shish ka bob skewer thru it and lay it on the oven rack. The potato or potatoes bake a lot faster and Oh So Good! Enjoy
Try baked potatoes this way...slice the potatoe into three sections (so two cuts) between slices of potatoe instert a slice of onion, mushrooms, and pat with butter. Then fold in foil wrap and bake as usual....mmmm good
To save time in making baked potatoes or any other type of potatoes I microwave them. It takes so much less time.
By RoseMary B.
I like the taste of them when they're baked in the oven so I microwave them for about 2-3 minutes, depending on the size, & them bake them.
I use a zip lock plastic bag to cook potatoes in the microwave. After piercing them, rub them with a little oil, put them in a plastic bag and do not close all the way. They taste like they were cooked in the oven.
Before baking potatoes soak them in water overnight to make them moist I learned this from a friend.
Thanks, Elizabeth, for the salt idea. Sounds delicious--we'll try it!
rub in olive oil, seasalt, cracked black pepper, and garlic salt, wrap in foil, bake on oven rack for 1 hour. great, crispy crust... and the crust is where the nutrients are!
for the best taste cook ur potato before u eat it
To the lady who wrote to put potatoes in a plastic bag and microwave, you should never do this, never cook anything in the microwave with any sort of plastic (except those microwave safe plastic take-alongs) chemicals from the plastic goes into your food, very harmful esepcially for children. This includes seran wrap! Thanks for the olive oil salt idea!
Never bake a potato in tin foil or in the microwave. When you do either of those things it changes the cooking method from "baking" to steaming and prevents a crisp skin from forming. Bake a clean potato in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about an hour. Poke it with a fork to allow steam to escape, rub with oil, and sprinkle with salt before placing on the oven rack.
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For quicker baking time for your baked potatoes try boiling them for 5-7 minutes first and then wrapping them in aluminum foil and baking at 400 degrees F.
Better yet, bake them in the microwave! I have a potato setting on mine - it's great. Just wash the skin, cut a little off both ends and prick with a fork. Then put in a microwave safe plastic bowl with a little water, and cook on the potato setting. I wrap them up in foil immediately after and let them sit that way for five minutes - they come out just as fluffy as done in the oven, but you save time and heating costs.
The best way I know is scrub them, wrap them in aluminum and put them in a crockpot on low all day. Perfect every time! (01/21/2005)
You can also take a brand new large nail, wash it well and push into each potato from the end. The metal carries the heat and no more bit in the center that is still raw. (01/22/2005)
Warning: Do NOT use the nail method in the microwave. Probably won't blow up, but would not be good for the magnetron (the thingy that makes the microwaves). (11/24/2009)
Another way to fast baked potatoes. Purchase a "potato bag" this is a bag made with 100% cotton fiber (won't catch on fire). Wash the potato first, do not dry, then place in a damp paper towel. You don't pierce with a fork. Place in the potato bag and then place in the microwave. You can place up to four medium size potatoes in the bag or one or two large ones. Set the timer for seven minutes. After the time is up squeeze the potato while still in the bag, if it feel soft and mushy it's done. If not then do for another minute until if does feel soft and mushy. Usually 7 minutes will get the potato done. (11/25/2009)
Potatoes soaked in salt water for 20 minutes before baking will bake more rapidly.
Whether you purchase potatoes in bulk and they're coming close to their expiration date or you simply like short cuts for daily meal preparation, try this: Bake up a few taters ahead. After baking you can peel them (or not) and then cube, slice, quarter, mash or simply place them whole in to individual baggies. Store what you think you'll want for the coming week in the fridge and the rest in the freezer.
Source: I live alone and don't want to waste nor do I want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen every single day! This has definitely worked for me. :-)
By Deeli from Richland, WA