It really feels as if winter is on its way now. I am delighted when the heating comes on and I seem to be spending my evenings wrapped up in a comforting big jumper (often liberated from my husband’s wardrobe! – ssshhh, don’t tell him!), snuggly thick socks and slippers. Oh and hot chocolate when the kids are in bed.
With the colder weather, I have been increasing my efforts to make potato more appealing and appetizing to my little potato-hater. We did try making hash browns, and he really did love using the food processor to grate the potato, but the entire recipe failed to entice him to devour a potato. Maybe wanting Atticus to do a complete one-eighty on his opinion of potatoes is a long shot, but I am really, really hoping that he will all of a sudden discover his Irish roots and the love of potatoes that everyone in my side family seems to have.
This recipe is the latest attempt, and I am happy to say that it is the most successful to date. I also have photographic evidence of Atticus eating it as I didn’t think his dad would believe me unless I had proof. I am unsure as to whether this was a one off or if it will become a bit more frequent, but for the moment I am revelling in my success!
For this recipe, I allowed one jacket potato per adult and half per child. We served it as an accompaniment to sausages, and corncobs for the kids. I had mine with salad and Simon had chicken wings.
- 4 cooked jacket potatoes (I tend to cook mine for a couple of hours the morning of or the evening before making these. They are easier to do when the skin is crispy)
- 250ml passata
- 1/2tsp garlic salt
- 2tsp dried mixed herbs
- 150-200g grated cheddar (or cheese of choice)
- Black pepper to taste (optional)
- Variations; add some tuna and sweetcorn as well as the passata or chopped sausage or pepperoni to make different flavours.
- Slice each cooked jacket potato in half (lengthways). The boys (6 and 4) used a sharp knife to do this).
- Scoop out the centre of the potatoes with a spoon being careful not to tear the skin and put in a large bowl. Place the skins in an oven proof dish.
- Squish and squash the potato with a masher.
- Add the passata, garlic salt, dried mixed herbs and black pepper (if using) and any other flavours and mix so that the mashed potato is fully coated in the passata.
- Spoon the potato mixture back into the potato skins and place in a large ovenproof dish.
- Sprinkle the cheese on top and put in the oven for 15 minutes so that the cheese melts and the potato warms through.
The children thought these were fun and they all got really involved in the process of making these ‘Pizza Potato Boats’. The two year old told me off for trying to help her (Little Miss Independent!). It was wonderful to see them all hard at work with the same activity and then all actually eat it without a single complaint!