Today’s special meal included this great recipe for stuffed potatoes (twice baked). What was really cool is that we substituted Danish Havarti cheese for the French Gruyere originally called out. We’re supporting Denmark in the wake of the insane Islamic reaction to the Danish Muhammad cartoons. And, we’ve been avoiding French stuff ever since their attitude about operation Iraqi Freedom turned out to be connected to oil-for-food scams. And there was no sacrifice to the end product since the Havarti was excellent!!
Damsel’s Danish Style Stuffed Potatoes
4 medium to large baking potatoes, like russets, washed
1 shallot, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
4 strips bacon chopped into small pieces
4 oz. Danish Havarti cheese, shredded, about 1 cup
1/2 cup evaporated milk
6 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only, chopped to about 2 tablespoons
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pierce potato skins with the tines of a fork. Wrap individually in aluminum foil. Bake for 1 1/2 hours.
About 20 minutes before the potatoes are done, heat a skillet and add the bacon pieces. Cook the bacon until crisp. Remove from the skillet with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Add chopped shallots and garlic and saute in bacon renderings for 2 to 3 minutes or until bits are just tender. Set aside.
When done, cool potatoes for 5 minutes and remove foil. Slice the potatoes 1/2 inch from a side. Scrape the potato flesh from the removed side into a mixing bowl. Discard the side skin. Being careful to keep at least 1/4 to 1/2 inch from the skins, remove most of the remaining potato flesh and place into the mixing bowl. Set hollowed out potatoes aside on a non-stick baking sheet or in a lightly oiled baking pan.
To the cooked potato in the mixing bowl, add shallots and garlic, bacon, grated cheese, evaporated milk, thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Mash mixture with a potato masher or dinner fork until mixture is combined, but not entirely lump-free.
Scoop mixture in even amounts into hollowed potatoes and bake for 15 to 20 more minutes, or until lightly browned.
Serving suggestion – Stuffed potatoes, grilled bone-in rib eye steaks with fresh blanched asparagus.