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Subject: Twice-Baked Potatoes Query
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

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From: Melba's Jammin' 
Date: Tue, 01 Jan 2002 17:23:25 -0600
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I just had a visit with one of my older sisters (OK, they're ALL older 
than I am).  She was making twice-bakeds to stick in the freezer for an 
upcoming dinner with guests.  I was underwhelmed.  I've never made them; 
they wouldn't be a big seller here because of the cheese, bacon, extra 
fat and cream.  My question:  After baking the spuds, do you want to be 
mashing the insides while still hot or do you let them cool?  It 
appeared that she was working with cold spuds.  Beating them with her 
mixer, adding milk with the Cheez-Whiz heated with it.  Fried bacon bits 
and chopped green onions added.  When she was filling the shells, the 
mixture was cold, lumpy, and of a gluey-looking consistency.  Didn't 
taste bad, though.
Whaddaya think?  If I were doing it, I'd make sure I was mashing them 
puppies while they were hot.  I didn't offer any opinions of her method.  
:-)  (I'm not stupid!)
If you freeze them for later use, do you thaw them first or heat from 
frozen?
TIA.

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From: Puester 
Date: Tue, 01 Jan 2002 23:37:18 GMT
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Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> I just had a visit with one of my older sisters (OK, they're ALL older 
> than I am). 

> Whaddaya think?  If I were doing it, I'd make sure I was mashing them
> puppies while they were hot.

It must be hard to be the youngest!  (I was the only.)  I can't 
imagine mashing cold potatoes.  We did make a recipe for Christmas
that called for baking the spuds, letting them cool overnight,
then peeling, grating, and adding various ingredients (OK, recipe to 
follow.)  The individual shreds kept their shape.  It was a bear to
peel the cold potatoes.  Next time I'd peel 'em when hot and chill
afterward.

> If you freeze them for later use, do you thaw them first or heat from
> frozen?

No idea.  Commercial ones say to heat from frozen but they get
pretty soggy.   Frozen potato tends to get grainy-textured, no?


these were so-so....
POWDERHORN POTATOES       8-10 servings  (Creme de Colorado Cookbook)
10 med. potatoes
1/2 c. butter, melted
8 oz. mild cheddar, shredded
2 Tbsp. chopped chives or green onions
2 c. sour cream
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  (Stir in some diced green chiles or horseradish for extra zip)

Bake potatoes in their jackets at 400 deg. ~40 minutes or till
slightly firm.  Cool overnight.  Peel and grate.

Mix together remaining ingredients and stir into grated potatoes.
Pour mixture into lightly greased 2 1/2 qt. casserole and bake at
350 deg. 30-40 min or till lightly browned.
(Note:  We topped with more grated cheddar before baking)

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From: Vox Humana 
Date: Tue, 01 Jan 2002 23:51:23 GMT
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Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> Whaddaya think?  If I were doing it, I'd make sure I was mashing them
> puppies while they were hot.  

I would put them through the food mill or mash them while they are hot.  The
starch in potatoes tends to get hard and waxy when it cools.  Also, potatoes
are more absorbent when they are warm, so I would mix in the other
ingredients while the potatoes are hot, just like I do when I am making
potato salad.

============================

From: Jill McQuown 
Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2002 19:50:30 -0600
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Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> Whaddaya think?  If I were doing it, I'd make sure I was mashing them
> puppies while they were hot.  

Hot.  And wouldn't freeze them for later.

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From: ladyvmh2000[at]aol.com (Vickie)
Date: 02 Jan 2002 03:21:51 GMT
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I make and freeze them quite often. It is only me so I do a bunch and then all
I have to do is take out of the freezer and stick in the oven. The shell gets
crispy that way. You can put anything you want in them. I even did them with
the garlic, parmesan and proscuitto like Damsel's Mashed Potatoes.  After
baking the potatoes I wait just until I can hold them without getting burned
before cutting in half and scooping out the insides. Then I mash them, put
whatever I want in them and put back in shell. I then put them in a baking pan
and put them in the freezer. When they are frozen solid I put them in baggies
and put back in freezer. This way I can have them whenever I want them. To cook
them I put them on foil or in a pie plate and put in oven at 350 degrees. You
don't have to preheat the oven. As soon as they are hot I eat.

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' 
Date: Wed, 02 Jan 2002 08:15:01 -0600
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Vickie wrote:
> I make and freeze them quite often. It is only me so I do a bunch and 
> then all I have to do is take out of the freezer and stick in the 
> oven.

Thanks, Vickie.  Maybe I'll check a pkg of commercially frozen ones for 
reheat info.  
I was really surprised at the way she was doing it; she's a pretty 
decent cook and working with them cold seemed odd to me.   -Barb

============================

From: Melba's Jammin' 
Date: Wed, 02 Jan 2002 08:15:56 -0600
--------
Melba's Jammin' wrote:
> If you freeze them for later use, do you thaw them first or heat from 
> frozen?

Thanks for all the replies.

============================

From: stan[at]temple.edu
Date: 2 Jan 2002 14:32:01 GMT
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Melba's Jammin'  wrote:
> If you freeze them for later use, do you thaw them first or heat from 
> frozen?

Reheating the potatoes from the frozen point would be okay; they'll just
take looker to heat thoroughly. There are bound to be low fat versions of
twice baked potatoes. Just off the top of my head, switching the butter
for a bit of olive oil; replacing the bacon with some sauted diced vegies
such as onion and green pepper, and mixing a bit of paramsian cheese, and
using low fat yoghurt for the sour cream would probably work reasonable
well. You can then serve the twiced baked potatoes with salsa or my 
favorite condiment, Heinz Ketchup! I too would mash the potatoes while 
they're still hot, but I doubt that mashing them while they're cold would 
significantly change the outcome of the recipe.

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From: MareCat 
Date: Thu, 03 Jan 2002 02:38:21 GMT
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Melba's Jammin' wrote:
>   My question:  After baking the spuds, do you want to be
> mashing the insides while still hot or do you let them cool?  It
> appeared that she was working with cold spuds. 

I've made them both hot/warm and cold before, and I won't make them any way
but hot/warm now. They do get a sort of gluey consistency when cold, and the
added ingredients don't blend as well. I scoop out the insides as soon as
they're just cool enough to handle (meaning, they're still fairly hot), add
the other ingredients, fill the shells, and bake.

Mary

============================

From: rmi1013934[at]aol.com (Rosie Miller)
Date: 03 Jan 2002 04:02:16 GMT
--------
Mary wrote:
>I've made them both hot/warm and cold before, and I won't make them any way
>but hot/warm now. They do get a sort of gluey consistency when cold, and the
>added ingredients don't blend as well. I scoop out the insides as soon as
>they're just cool enough to handle (meaning, they're still fairly hot), add
>the other ingredients, fill the shells, and bake.

I cut them open as soon as I take them from the oven, let them cool just long
enough to be able to work with them, and go from there. I like the consistancy
of the potato to be dry and mealy, and found that when stuffed they do much
better,if I wait till they are cool.... eeeeuuuuuuuuwww. They resemble paste in
texture and taste too....

============================

From: C Brevis 
Date: Fri, 04 Jan 2002 15:09:39 GMT
--------
Previously, in rfc, Melba's Jammin' wrote:

> I just had a visit with one of my older sisters (OK, they're ALL older 
> than I am).  She was making twice-bakeds to stick in the freezer for an
> upcoming dinner with guests.  I was underwhelmed.  I've never made
> them; they wouldn't be a big seller here because of the cheese, bacon,
> extra fat and cream.  My question:  After baking the spuds, do you want
> to be mashing the insides while still hot or do you let them cool?  

My kids love baked stuffed potatoes, so once in a while I'll bake 8 or 10 
and prepare them.  I let the potatoes cool enough so I can handle them.  
Sometimes they get as cool as room temperature. 

> appeared that she was working with cold spuds.  Beating them with her 
> mixer, adding milk with the Cheez-Whiz heated with it.  Fried bacon
> bits and chopped green onions added.  When she was filling the shells,
> the mixture was cold, lumpy, and of a gluey-looking consistency. 
> Didn't taste bad, though.

I cut them in half and scoop out the innards.  When they are cooler it is 
easier for me to keep the shells intact while scooping. And the potato is 
drier when its cool, which works well for stuffing back in the shell.

I use a fork to mash the potatoes with softened butter, sour cream, 
shredded cheddar, sauteed onions, chopped crispy bacon and fresh chives.  
Refill the shells, place on a baking tray and reheat for 15 minutes or so.

> Whaddaya think?  If I were doing it, I'd make sure I was mashing them 
> puppies while they were hot.  I didn't offer any opinions of her
> method.  
>:-)  (I'm not stupid!)

Hahahah.  

> If you freeze them for later use, do you thaw them first or heat from 
> frozen?
> TIA.

I refrigerate ours cause they are used within a day or so. But I'm sure 
you can heat them directly from frozen.  :)


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