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Creamed Baked Potato
Serves 4
Qty Size Ingredient
4 med Russet Potatoes
8 oz Cream Cheese
8 oz Sour Cream
4 slices Smoked Bacon
4 oz Unsalted Butter (1 stick)
2 oz Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano
2 oz Shredded Sharp Cheddar
2 cloves Garlic
¼ cup Heavy Cream
2 sprigs Fresh Thyme
2 tsp Kosher Salt
1 tsp Fresh Grated Nutmeg
½ tsp Fresh Ground Black Pepper
some Sweet Hungarian Paprika (garnish)
some Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Put an oven rack in the center of the oven.  Preheat the oven to 400°.  Line a baking sheet.  Using a paring knife or fork, poke some holes in the top center of the potatoes, we'll be reusing the bottoms, and arrange on the prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 1 to 1½ hours until tender and cooked through (205º).  Remove from the oven and let cool until can handle them, about 20 minutes.

Bake the bacon at 300º for 30-40 minutes until well browned, then chop finely.

In a bowl, combine everything except cheddar cheese, Paprika, oil and half the chopped bacon (if you want to sprinkle some on top for presentation) and mix thoroughly.

Using a paring knife, cut out the top dome piece of each potato.  Using a spoon, scoop the flesh out of the tops and most of the bottoms, leaving about ¼" all round to keep the potato from collapsing on itself.  Place the scraped tops in the bottom of it's respective potato.  (if you don't care for potato skins, toss them)  Add the potato flesh to the bowl and mix thoroughly.

Using a pastry brush (or new paint brush or soaked paper towel), brush the outsides of the potatoes with the olive oil.  Then spoon or pipe the mixture back into the potato shells until just over-filled.  (there will be a little left over because we added a lot to the flesh that came out)

Reduce oven temperature to 375º and bake until the tops start turning brown, about 30 to 40 minutes.  Remove from oven, dust with the paprika, sprinkle the remaining bacon bits on top (if you reserved some), and then a pinch of the shredded cheddar cheese.  If they are fresh out of the oven the cheese should melt on it's own in a few minutes, otherwise, just return them to the still warm oven, or torch them, before serving.


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