I have always had a place in my heart for all things cheesy, full of carbs and dip-able. cheese fries, potato skins are on the top of that list. There is just something about those yummy tater skins all stuffed with the good greasy, yummy-ness that is cheese. Then as if it couldn't get better you can dip it in sour cream (or ranch I suppose).
There is something about the restaurant style potato skins that just makes them so good, the skin is crunchy and salty but not tough and the inside is cooked to perfection.
After countless efforts and pounds and pounds of russet potatoes later I can bring you a great recipe sure to wow your guests.
No potatoes were harmed in this experiment. :D
I have tried various combos of cooking, parboiling, then deep frying, baking then broiling. this recipe was a hit numerous times here at the house so without further adieu:
Each potato makes 2 skins so plan accordingly, I used 6 last night.
Scrub your potatoes clean unless you like the taste of dirt, which would make you strange, but that is ok we are all a little quirky.
Microwave your potatoes (my little microwave took 14 minutes but if you have a better hi-powered it shouldn't take long) make sure you flip them half way through or else you end up with burned spots. Once they are done take them out and cut them in half, they are hot (duh), please be careful!!
Now with a spoon take out some of the potato, save it in a bowl you can make some mashed taters or what have you with the left-overs. Make sure you leave some potato in the shell though, that is what makes it good, and starchy :)
If you are going to use bacon now is the time to start that in a skillet, I use my kitchen shears and cut it up into the pan. when the bacon is done set aside on paper towel to drain
Now you need some olive oil and kosher salt. Turn the potatoes cut side down and brush the skins with olive oil. Then sprinkle with some kosher (or any coarse salt). stick in the oven on broil (most oven broil at 450-500 degrees, so if you don't have a 'broil' setting just use high temps)
*watch them closely, you want the skin to be a bit crispy but not too much or it will be tough, I think mine took maybe 5 minutes.
Now flip them over! Add a small amount (don't go by my pic cause I over-did-it with the bbq this time around) of BBQ we always use a sweet/spicy or just plain sweet BBQ sauce. Now I am not a BBQ sauce fan, but this really, really makes them yummy. If you aren't sure about it just try a few w/ the sauce and the rest with out. Depending on our company sometimes I do half with and half with-out.
Now, normally I would scream and yell at the top of my lungs 'please use block cheese and shred yourself' this time, either way is good with me because it isn't like its super healthy any way :) I used 'sargento' 4 cheese blend. You can use whatever floats your boat. be generous with the cheese, it is what makes it!
Stick back in the oven (still set to broil) for a few minutes, and I mean just a few until the cheese is melted, top with the bacon and shove back in the oven for a sec to heat the bacon back up.
I usually throw some scallions on top but I was out last night. Also I am sorry there is no plated picture I noticed a storm outside and ran out with a skin in one hand doused with sour cream and my camera in the other :) As you can see in the above picture I was messy with the sour cream lol.
I did get this though: