Baked Potatoes with Cheese

Ingredients

  • 4 large Idaho potatoes
  • Oil, lard, or bacon fat
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup hot heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter
  • 1 to 2 cups loosely packed grated Cheddar cheese (about ¼ to ½ pound cheese)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

  2. With the fingers, rub the potatoes lightly with oil, lard, or bacon fat. Place the potatoes on a rack in the oven and bake for 1 hour or until potatoes are tender. To determine if the potatoes are tender, hold one of them between two pot holders and squeeze. The skins should “give” easily and the inside should feel soft.

  3. Cut each of the potatoes lengthwise in half. Scoop out the white flesh from each potato half. Press the scooped out portion, a little at a time, through a potato ricer into a mixing bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Beat in the hot cream and butter. Beat well until butter is melted. Spoon the mixture back into the potato “shells.” Sprinkle each of the filled potato halves with ¼ to ½ cup grated cheese.

  4. Line a baking dish with aluminum foil. Arrange the potatoes on the foil and return the potatoes to the oven. Bake until potatoes are thoroughly hot and the cheese is melted—at least 10 minutes.

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