So I wrote an ode to butter a few days ago. Right. Unfortunately, it played into my cooking attempt last night in a rather big way.
If you haven’t already heard, I’m becoming slightly obsessed with the Pioneer Woman. Her recipes are just the right mix of unique and down home, her photography is beautiful, and the story of how she met and married her husband will make you laugh hysterically and sigh really loudly at regular intervals. It’s good stuff. If those things weren’t enough to make you obsessed with her, too, she also helps run a working ranch, homeschools her kids, and used to be a city girl to boot.
So I made her meatloaf with bacon last week, and it was pure deliciousness. I mean, the last meatloaf that I tried ended up being a brick-o-grease, and this one was perfect. I almost did a cartwheel in my kitchen, which would have spelled disaster in more ways than one. Instead, I ate like it was my job.
I started last night’s culinary adventure with confidence. How could the Pioneer Woman fail me? I washed potatoes, placed them with loving care on a giant baking sheet, put them in the pre-heated oven as prescribed, and mixed the ingredients for the fun filling.
The thing about twice baked potatoes is that they have to be once baked thoroughly before they can become twice baked. Right. I’ve never baked potatoes before. Pasta is an easier carb to prepare, so pasta and bread are my carb mainstays. Rice makes an occasional showing in the kitchen, but potatoes were just a fond memory from my childhood until last night.
Out came the potatoes from the oven. I sliced each one carefully down the middle, then began the scooping process. Hmm. Something wasn’t right. The first few potatoes were fine… insides falling nicely into the bowl of filling goo. Then a few of the potatoes were more like rocks. I’m not an idiot, so I knew they weren’t fully cooked. What I didn’t think about at the time was that I could just zap them in the microwave for a minute or two and solve the problem with relative ease. I tried desperately to get the half-cooked potato centers into the bowl, but some of them just wouldn’t oblige.
What that means is that by the time I had finished scooping, I had two sticks of butter, tons of sour cream, bacon, milk, cheese, and various seasonings in a bowl that was supposed to contain the inside of sixteen potato halves. In real life, it had the inside of eight potato halves. The result was a little bit scary. It smelled like heaven, but looked like it might clog your arteries in five seconds flat. There was a little butter river covering most of the surface of each potato. Mmm. It might have been a little butter river during monsoon season. That’s what I get for talking so much about the glories of butter. Next time, I’ll talk about the glories of perfectly baked potatoes or something.