When serving something roasted – beef, lamb or chicken, it’s always nice to make it go with baked potato or my version, which is to make all the ingredients go together.
It was actually my easy way out in serving baked potato to my Aussie family. Making baked potato can sometimes be a chore; and to make matters worse, I never really knew who was really coming and what was their appetite. To save myself from these factors, I thought of an easier way out.
Slice the potatoes; half cook them; make a sauce; sprinkle some toppings; bake and serve! Voila! Potato Bake!
The leftovers could be served the next day. With my family in Manila, there was hardly any leftovers since it was favorite and if there was any leftover, it was usually taken home by one or two of them.
A convenient way to serve baked potatoes to a crowd - baked potatoes all in a tray!
- 1 kilo potatoes - peel, soak in salted water (1 tablespoon salt in 4 cups water)
- 100 grams bacon - slice into tiny strips - pan fry with 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup hot water with 1 cube of beef or chicken bouillon
- ½ cup milk
- 1 cup cooking cream
- Season with salt and pepper to your liking, starting with ¼ teaspoon
- ¼ cup grated cheese (Colby-Jack), or Edam cheese or Pecorino
Start with the potatoes
Peel the potatoes and place them in a bowl of salted water.
When all the potatoes have been peeled, slice the potatoes into ¼-inch rounds.
Place the potatoes in a saucepan; pour enough water to cover the potatoes and slowly bring them to a boil.
Boil for 10 minutes.
Drain the par-boiled potatoes.
Arrange the potatoes in a oven proof dish (Pyrex, aluminum pan, earthenware dish) like little soldiers in a row. Set aside.
Fry the bacon bits over low fire until lightly brown; drain; scatter all over the arranged potatoes. Set aside.
Make the sauce.
In a small saucepan, set over low-medium fire, melt the butter then add the all-purpose flour.
Continuously stir, with a whisk, the butter-flour mixture until the smell of the flour is not so raw; you want a lightly toasted smell.
Slowly pour in the hot water with bouillon while constantly whisking to prevent the flour mixture from getting burned or sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Make sure that you do not have any clumps of flour.
Now, gently mix in the milk and continue to stir; making sure that you don’t have clumps.
When that has been done, slowly mix in the cream and stir to prevent the clumping.
Season with salt and pepper.
Remove from fire.
Putting them all together
Heat up the oven to 320ºF (160ºC)
Carefully pour the cream sauce over the potatoes.
Sprinkle the cheese evenly all over the potatoes.
Cover with parchment paper and then with aluminum foil.
Place inside oven and bake for about 30 minutes.
Remove from oven and remove the covers.
Place back in oven for another 30 minutes or until the top is slightly brown.
Serve while warm.