How to Bake a Potato

Method is the most important part of any recipe, even how to boil an egg, for which there is no good way. My method for baking potatoes results in crisp, toothsome skin and a molten, crumbly center.

Any given potato must be washed and scrubbed, then dried thoroughly before coating with salted oil and placing in the oven, which must be very hot. A large (10-12 oz.) white potato will take an hour in a 400F oven. Potatoes can be pierced and microwaved to start, but should be finished in the oven; likewise, waxy potatoes should be parboiled. Wrapping them in foil before baking ensures a steamed potato, which is wonderful and nostalgic, but lesser fare than baked.

 

Potato Bacon Footballs

Season small peeled parboiled potatoes with salt and black pepper, wrap in bacon and bake in a hot oven until bacon is crisp. Dust with more pepper and serve as an appetizer with cole slaw and a light Pilsner. This is a great tailgate recipe.

Yancy’s Pepper Crust Potatoes

Cut red potatoes into bite-sized chunks and boil with Zatarain’s liquid seasoning (use a lot) until just tender. Rinse, drain very well and toss with vegetable oil, salt, a goodly amount of black pepper and enough granulated garlic to make a statement. Strow the potatoes on a shallow baker, and throw in a hot oven (400+), stirring occasionally until the cut edges are lightly browned. Serve with grilled meats and fried seafood. These reheat well, but do not freeze.