Put the spuds in the oven just before you go out for a quick drink or an evening meeting, return an hour or so later and supper is almost done.
Heat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Scrub the potatoes well and dry thoroughly. Prick lightly, coat in olive oil, and roll in salt and pepper.
Place the potatoes on the rack in the centre of the oven and bake for 1½ to 2 hours, until soft to the touch. (If you can hear them softly whistle, they’re perfect.)
Fry the bacon in a non-stick fry pan until crisp, drain well on paper towel, and chop or crumble into shards.
Cut a cross in the top of each potato, and push in at the edges to expose the inside. Pile the sour cream and blue cheese on top, scatter with bacon and chives, and serve before it all melts.
© 2002 Jill Dupleix. All rights reserved.