Baked Spuds

Baked Spuds

Prep:           1 min.

Cooking:      60-90 mins without cheating.  A lot less if you cheat.

Course:        – So versatile that it can be whatever you wish

Serves:        AMAR

Rating:         1: Easy-peasy, lemon-squeezy AGAIN!!

Find:

  • Large spuds
  • Butter/spread
  • Metal skewer if you have one – if not, don’t worry.
  • You’ll need an oven.

METHOD:

So how do I bake a baked spud?  Use the oven, that’s how.

If you have lots of time, pop it in the oven at about 200 degs C for an hour or so, according to size, and you should have a done spud.  But how about a done spud tasting nicer?  Well, it’s easy.

  • Spike the raw spud all over with a skewer or a fork (or a knife!), then rub butter or other oil/fat into the holes and all over the skin.
  • Stick the skewer straight through the middle of the spud and out t’other end. This will carry the heat through to the centre and cook it more evenly.  Clever, eh?  That is, of course, using a metal skewer – a wooden kebab stick won’t conduct the heat. If you have a plain steel table knife, you can use that.

(We really do owe so much to the science of Physics, don’t we?) 

  • Some people wrap ‘em up in foil, but I can’t see the point meself as they’ve got their skins to get crispy!
  • Pop the spud(s) onto a metal baking tray or a ceramic oven dish and into the oven at 200C. Littler spuds take about 50 minutes, bigger spuds an hour or so – and really ginormous spuds probably 75 minutes.
  • Of course, you can cheat if you are in a rush. To cheat (fairly, of course) just chuck the spuds into the microwave on a non-metallic plate for about 10 + minutes, according to spud size & how many you are cheating with (without the metal skewer of knife down the middle), then take them out of the mike and pop them into the normal oven, as above, for about 30 minutes – you will still get reasonably crisp outsides with a soft and gooooey middle.
  • But don’t tell anyone how you did it, will you…. we don’t want too many people knowing, or they’ll all be as clued up as you and me.
  • Split the spud and add your filling……. More of which, later.

Cheese on Beans on Toast

5T1.[A] Cheese on beans on toast:

(The 5T1 refers to Section 5, Toast-based, first item)

(The A refers to this recipe being cheap’n’cheerful)

Prep:           5 mins.

Cooking:      10 mins.

Course:        Snack Lunch Anytime Midnight

Serves:        AMAR  (as many as required….)

Rating:         1:  Very easy – no; it’s easier than that; let’s rate it as ½ …. In other words you can do it in your sleep..

Find:

  • Hard cheese – no, that’s not a comment….(Cheddar, Leicester or similar)
  • Can of baked beans (that’s baked beans in a can, y’know? You’ll be able to tell, cos it’ll say Baked Beans on the label.)
  • Sliced bread (or bread, then slice it to make…. er…. slices)
  • Butter if required
  • Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce bottle – preferably with some Worcestershire Sauce actually still in it.
  • Grill (no, you CANNOT use a toaster when there are beans in the recipe….. don’t be a Dumbo, ……..)
  • Cheese grater

Method:

  • ‘Turn on’ the grill (that doesn’t mean you have to buy it a drink and tell it that it’s looking beautiful today…..).
  • Grate your cheese. Use a hard cheese like Leicester or Cheddar or something similar – not Edam as it doesn’t melt readily under the grill.

Note:  Supermarket ‘value mild, coloured’ cheese is generally tasteless and pretty ‘orrible.

  • Use a normal hand-held coarse cheese grater on top of a plate or something clean that will catch the grated cheese (or have it ready-grated in the fridge, courtesy of Ikea or Asda – see Tricks’n’Tips for an explanation of that statement; it’s good!).
  • Ok, now take your bread from its packet and put it onto the grill pan. That’s the bread; not the packet.

Now WAIT….  Whatever grill you have it will take a time to get going.  Think of yourself on a Monday morning – don’t YOU take a while to get going?                                                              (These days I take time to get going ANY morning.)

  • After the grill has been heating up for a few minutes, put the bread under the now hot grill (cos it’s been on for 5 mins) and keep an eye on it. It just needs to brown a bit

My ol’ Dad had a good saying……

“When it’s brown, it’s done…… 

When it’s black, it’s buggered.”  

It may not be quite politically correct to describe it as such, but as a piece of advice it’s very true.

  • The best method is to toast one side of the bread under the grill, take it out and spread butter on the untoasted side (you can omit the butter if you want to be a health freak) and put the warmed up baked beans (either in a pan or in a non-metallic bowl in the microwave) on the bread. Season with black pepper, but not salt – there’s already enough salt in the can of baked beans to pay a division of Roman Centurions for a year; and sugar too.
  • Load the coarsely grated cheese onto the same side, atop the beans, just squashing it all down a bit to stop it from falling off the edges.

Ensure that the crust edges are covered as well as possible as otherwise they will suffer from burn.

  • Ok, so now, reach for the Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce bottle. Just give the cheese a bit of a splash of the sauce.
  • Now do it again. Lea & Perrins makes crappy cheese taste really great – believe me (even the cheap supermarket ‘value, mild, coloured’ cheese variety is improved – but L&P’s is not a complete miracle worker).  Ok, put the loaded up slices (carefully now – you may need to slide a spatula underneath to support it better….. don’t drop it…….) back onto the grill pan and pop it back under the grill.  When the cheese has melted, so that it is all bubbly and gooified, it’s ready.

STOP!  Check again.  Don’t take it out too early; remember that you loaded the cheese onto the slices to cover the edges to avoid burn…….

You did…. didn’t you?

  • Ok, out from under the grill, onto a plate, cut into half slices (or quarters if you’re a wuss) and CONSUME WITH GUSTO (if you can find her).

See, my lovely peeps?  Good, eh?

Stick with me, kiddoes; I’ll look after yer.