Looking for a quick, tasty winter warmer dish that isn't your typical soup/stew? These cheesy broccoli and bacon stuffed potato skins from our resident food blogger, Laura Ford, are a fantastic family-friendly meal. The recipe involves scooping out the cooked potato and creating a cheesy mashed potato filling flavoured with broccoli and bacon, and are a guaranteed crowd-pleaser!
If you're not the broccoli and bacon type, Laura recommends changing up the flavours by adding corn, cooked chicken breast, tuna, lean ham, capsicum, tomato, kale or spinach. You can even try making this more gourmet with blue cheese, parmesan or a vintage cheddar. Get in our bellies!
6 medium sized washed potatoes 1 tsp Australian extra-virgin olive oil 1 shallot, diced 2 rashers of bacon, diced 1 clove of garlic, crushed 2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked 1 head of broccoli, stems and florets chopped and separated 1 cup of water 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 2 tbsp cottage cheese (optional) 1 cup grated tasty cheese, plus extra for sprinkling on top 1 cup of milk Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Place potatoes on a baking tray with no oil and bake in the oven for 1 – 11⁄2 hours until soft and cooked though. Check to see if the potato is cooked by testing with a fork. Once cooked, allow to cool slightly before handling.
2. While the potatoes are baking, prepare the filling by heating olive oil in a pan on medium heat. Add diced shallots and cook for 5 minutes until softened and transparent.
3. Add bacon and cook for 5 minutes or until bacon starts to turn golden around the edges. Add the garlic, thyme leaves and broccoli stems and cook for another 5 minutes until the broccoli stems have softened.
4. Once the broccoli stems have softened, add the broccoli florets and water. Turn down the heat to a simmer and cook until the broccoli is soft and the water has evaporated (approximately 5-10 mintues). Turn off heat and allow to cool slightly.
5. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, slice in half and scoop out the cooked potato flesh. Try not to tear the potato skin as the filling will be stuffed back into the skins. Add the potato flesh to the bacon and broccoli mixture.
6. Mash together the cooked potato, cooked bacon and broccoli mixture, Worcestershire sauce, cottage cheese (if using) and grated tasty cheese. Add milk and season with salt and pepper to taste.
7. Fill the potato skins with approximately 1-2 tablespoons of the potato. Place the stuffed potatoes on an oiled baking tray and sprinkle with extra tasty cheese.
8. Bake the stuffed potatoes in the oven for 20-25 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before serving.