We’ve named the potato skin the official football food winner. Portable finger food wins every time. We’ve also tried making skins with sweet potatoes roasted with maple syrup, pecans and comte cheese – divine. But we like this recipe for it’s hot marinara-style dip.
POTATO SKINS WITH ITALIAN SAUSAGES AND ASIAGO CHEESE
from Eric Akis (canwest photo)
4 large baking potatoes, washed well and dried
2 mild, medium or hot Italian sausages
3 Tablespoon (45 mL) olive oil
2 teaspoon (10 mL) ground oregano
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
150 grams Asiago cheese, grated
2 Tablespoon (30 mL) chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) tomato-based pasta sauce, warmed
Preheat the oven to 375 F (180 C). Prick each potato several times with a fork and set on baking sheet. Bake the potatoes until tender, about 60 minutes. Cool the potatoes to room temperature.
While the potatoes cool, remove the sausage meat from its casing. Place 1 Tablespoon of the oil in a skillet set over medium to medium-high heat. Pull the sausage meat into small, 1/4-inch long pieces and set in the skillet,Cook the pieces of sausage until entirely cooked through, and then drain well, place in a bowl and set aside.
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut each potato lengthwise in half. Scoop out enough of the potato flesh to create a half-inch thick shell of skin and flesh. (Refrigerate and reserve the potato you scooped out for another use, such as hash browns).
Cut each half potato, lengthwise, into three wedges. Set the wedges, skin-side-down, on the baking sheet. Brush the potatoes with the remaining olive oil; sprinkle with oregano, salt and pepper. Divide and top the potatoes with the cheese and cooked sausage, crumbling the latter into smaller pieces if necessary. (The potatoes could be made to this point several hours in advance of serving. Cover and refrigerate until ready to bake.)
Bake the potato skins at 375 F (180 C) for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and golden and the potatoes are well heated through. Arrange the potato skins on a platter and sprinkle with parsley. Serve a bowl of the pasta sauce alongside for dipping.