Good Old Baked Potato

Before I had celiac disease I never thought too much about baked potatoes. They were just something you ate with steak. Then when I started my gluten-free diet, and for a time afterwards they became an island of safe fulfilling nourishment in restaurants overrun with gluten! When adding a baked potato to the cursory salad with bland meat it would actually make eating out somewhat tolerable. I'm a pretty big guy, and a big eater, and I've never really been satisfied with a meal unless there is some kind of starch to fill me up. Now I have more confidence in what to order in restaurants, and most restaurants are more aware of gluten-free diets so it is easier, but I still have a soft place for the good old baked potato.
I always keep a few baking potatoes in the pantry for when I get home hungry from a long day and I don't have the energy to muster up my usual culinary delights. Then I just reach for the potatoes and use them like a blank canvas, similar to the way I used to pick up two pieces of bread and look for something to fill them with. Last year I was watching the food network and was delighted by the showcase of a restaurant (I can't remember where) which served everything (or anything) on a bed of mashed potatoes. Dessert was a bed of mashed sweet potatoes covered in anything sweet. Since seeing that I now think of the baked potato in much the same way, with an invitation to fill it with whatever strikes your fancy. One of my favorite toppings has been leftover taco meat with cheese (of course). Some other things toppings I've enjoyed are, peppers and onions, corn, breaded fried chicken, black bean (or any other) salsa, cooked broccoli, grilled salmon, chili, ham, bacon, spinach, sauteed mushrooms, green onion, grilled eggplant, (almost any kind of) cheese, tomato sauce with parmesan cheese, butter and sour cream (of course) and any combination of the above. Don't for get the salt and fresh cracked pepper! Last night I had peppers and onions with corn, bacon and cheese (see above photo) and it was entirely satisfying! I really don't have a recipe to post here, but it you want one you can try a data base of every type of potato recipe you could ever want.


Anonymous said...

I thought you couldn't have cheese with celiac disease?

Jeff S said...

Although many people with celiac disease have intolerance to lactose, (including cheese), most people with celiac can eat cheese with no problems.