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Posts Tagged ‘oven’

Oven-baked jacket potato with cheese and beans

I love jacket potatoes – they’re the ultimate comfort food for me. But they have to be done properly, in a preheated 180-190C oven for a minimum of 90 minutes so that soft, fluffy flesh is encased in a thick, crispy skin that gives the most satisfying crunch when you cut through it. (The Lurpak advert is a particular favourite of mine!). Jacket potato has to be the absolute nicest thing you can make with absolutely no effort (but admittedly a fair bit of patience).

No matter how many wonderful fillings I try (cottage cheese, ratatouille, chilli, coleslaw…) I always come back to the favourite – good old grated cheddar cheese and Heinz baked beans.

And that leads me to my question – what do you add first, the cheese or the beans? I’ve always insisted that the cheese goes first, but if ever I buy a (usually pretty disappointing) jacket potato for lunch it’s always done the other way. My argument is that the cheese should melt against the flesh of the potato, rather than just into the beans, but (as you can see from the photo) Rob disagrees – I’d love to hear your views!

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Wow, last night’s dinner was delicious. We were treated to a sweet, but utterly delicious chicken curry that is a favourite from-home dish of our South African hostess. I got the recipe (only 4 ingredients in the sauce – and slightly strange ones at that!) and Rob and I will definitely be giving it a try ourselves sometime.

Roasted vegetable lasagne just out of the oven

But on to tonight’s roasted vegetable lasagne! I got home from work and took the roasted vegetables out of the fridge, into which I stirred a tin of chopped tomatoes (to avoid the need for further cooking use good quality tinned tomatoes as they are far less watery than cheaper ones and therefore don’t turn the roast veg into a sludgy mess – our favourites are Cirio and Napolina). As tinned tomatoes can be a little bitter I also added a couple of pinches of sugar to mellow out the flavour. I then layered up an ovenproof dish with the veg, lasagne sheets and white sauce (from a jar – we’ve yet to attempt making our own) and topped it with about 50g of cheddar. The lasagne was then covered in foil and put into a 180 degree oven – at which point Rob got home, nice timing there. After 30 minutes the foil was removed and the oven temperature whacked up as high as it’d go to brown the cheese – I actually got impatient at this point and swapped over to the grill!

Whenever we’ve made any kind of lasagne before, we haven’t done the foil stage. I can’t really work out if it was beneficial or not – on the one hand, I think it helped the pasta to cook well, but I also wouldn’t have needed the grill had the cheese been left to brown all along. Maybe next time we’ll try the foil for less time. Tonight’s roasted vegetable lasagne was really nice, but I think next time it’d also be good to add some cloves of garlic to the roasting mix and combine the cheddar with some Grana Padano (a favourite over parmesan in the Grubs Up household!).

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