OKLAHOMA CITY - These are easy, delicious and may be prepared in advance.
Reheat at 200 degrees until hot throughout. They may be frozen for up to three months, although I find the texture changes a bit.
Perfect as a splurge side or even an entree.
4 medium to large (not massive) baking potatoes, scrubbed
1 stick butter, sliced into pats
1/2 C crumbled bacon
1/2 C sour cream
1/2 C grated sharp cheddar
1/4 C grated sharp cheddar, reserved
1/4 t seasoned salt
1/4 t black pepper
1/4 t dehydrated garlic or garlic powder
1-2 green onions, chopped (optional)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place scrubbed potatoes on center rack; bake for 75-80 minutes, or until thoroughly cooked. Remove from oven. Allow to rest for 5 minutes. *Warning: the potatoes will be HOT - cradle them in a towel as you proceed.*
Slice each potato in half, lengthwise. Using tablespoon, scoop out the flesh of each 1/2 potato, placing flesh into large bowl. Add sliced butter; mash with potato masher until smooth. Using both masher and spatula, add 1/2 cup grated cheddar and combine until melted and thoroughly blended.
Using spatula, carefully and thoroughly fold in sour cream, bacon, salt, pepper and garlic. Using tablespoon, carefully reload potato skins with the mixture. Top with 1/4 C grated cheddar and optional chopped onion. Potatoes may be immediately returned to oven or cooled in refrigerator to reheat later. Serve hot.