Cheese, onion and bacon stuffed baked potatoes
Life, you might think, is too short to stuff a potato but you get the best of all worlds - crispy baked potato skin, mashed potato filling and crisp cheesy crust. Mmmmm.
4 medium to large potatoes, about 250g-300g each
Turn the oven on to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Scrub the potatoes clean, dry them, prick them with a fork and rub them lightly with oil. Put the potatoes in the oven and bake them for an hour and a quarter, turning them half way through. (You can go off and do something else at this point) Take the potatoes out of the oven and leave to cool slightly while you heat the remaining oil and fry the chopped onion and bacon until crisp. Cut the potatoes in half and carefully scoop out the centre without breaking the skin. Mash until smooth then add the butter and milk or milk and cream and mash again. Add the fried onion and bacon and a third of the cheese, mix well together and season with salt and pepper. Pile the filling back into the potatoes and top with the remaining grated cheese. Turn the oven up to 220°C/425°F/Gas 7 and cook the potatoes until the topping is nice and crispy. Good with salad or lightly cooked broccoli or spring greens.
* You could replace the cheddar with other hard cheeses such as Lancashire or Red Leicester, a crumbly blue cheese such as Stilton or a soft herb and garlic-flavoured cheese.
* Note you don't have to pre-heat the oven to cook baked potatoes. And try and find something else you can cook in the oven at the same time like a some roast veggies or a loaf of bread, or, as it cools down, a cake or a quiche