Pop’s Potatoes

January 30,2012
Sweet Pea Chef
Jessica Efird( )

Jessica, aka the Sweet Pea Chef, is a former U.S. Senate staffer/weekend gourmet turned full-time mom/family gourmet. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband and two sons.

I’ve figured out a way to get R and G to try a new food:  have someone else offer it to them.  In the last year, we’ve gone from “no way!” to “yes, please!” on two foods for R and G, just because one of their grandparents offered it to them

For G, a trip to Grandpa and Grandma’s house has yielded a loyal devotion to Asiago cheese.  Apparently my parents offered him some and my usual cheddar cheese-only boy willingly tried and loved Asiago cheese.  Months later, we rarely are without Asiago in our refrigerator!

For R, it was Pop who convinced him to try a potato.  For some reason, R had never been willing to try bake or mashed potatoes, and when we did manage a small taste, he usually turned up his nose and said, “no thank you.”  We didn’t lose any sleep over his potato pickiness, but we were surprised when Pop’s Potatoes turned our son into a baked potato fan!

Pop’s Potatoes are basically twice baked potatoes, but I’ve taken this recipe, which can be laden with fat and calories, and created a light version.  The best test of my recipe redo was when I gave them to R and he said, “mmm, I love these!”  High praise indeed.

Pop’s Potatoes

4 russet potatoes (or however you wish to cook, just adjust the filling accordingly)
1-2 tablespoons Earth Balance or butter
1-2 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
½ cup reduced-fat sharp Cheddar cheese
½ teaspoon kosher salt
a few grinds of fresh ground pepper
sliced green onion (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  

Wrap each potato in foil and bake until they yield to your touch, about 30-45 minutes, depending on their size.

Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees.

Slice each potato in half, being careful because they will be hot!  With a spoon, remove the potato inside, leaving a quarter inch border:

In a large bowl, combine the potato filling, Earth Balance or butter, sour cream, cheese, salt and pepper:

Stir well to combine the ingredients and use to fill the potato halves, topping with a few sliced green onions, if desired.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the tops are slightly browned:

Voila!  Pop’s Potatoes for your family!

Life is sweet,