Potatoes Could Not be Easier

PotatoesHere are some concoctions from my friend Arlene who has this to say about potatoes:

Potatoes are one of my favorite foods. They fit nicely on both CORE and FLEX. They come in a portion that you can buy, see, measure, understand and enjoy.

A 4 ounce bakes down to a 3 ounce cooked potato and is 1 point. Adjust the points for a larger potato. Be honest. Weigh them!

Here are some of my ideas for potatoes…

My favorites are the red bliss potatoes. I usually buy them about 4-5 ounces each potato. You could buy Idaho or Maine potatoes, though usually these are larger, maybe 6-10 ounces. There are also Yukon Gold potatoes, (they even taste buttery) Fingerling potatoes (they are more gourmet and are more expensive) or you could buy an all purpose potato.

Scrub potatoes (I usually bake about 10 of them on a weekend so I can have “encore presentations” during the week). Dry potatoes with a paper towel and then spray with a squirt of cooking spray and rub all over the skin. This makes a crispy skin.

Poke the potato with the tines of a fork. Put in a preheated 400 degree oven, right on the oven rack. Bake about 60-65 minutes until they feel a little flexible when you squeeze them with your “potholdered hand.”

I eat them first as a baked potato. Sometimes I open them, and use a little “I can’t believe it’s not butter” Spray. Sometimes I use a fancy mustard or a little BBQ sauce on my baked potato. I wrap the rest in foil and put them in the fridge. I use them rest of the week.

I use two potatoes at a time. That way I portion control what we are eating. It’s an easy trick and then there are no seconds to tempt us.

I dice up two potatoes, dice a small onion, a stalk of celery, dice a dill pickle and two tablespoons fat free mayo… you have potato salad… Add any seasonings that turn you on. You could also add a chopped hard boiled egg and maybe a drop of white wine vinega

I chunk two potatoes, put in a sprayed microwavable dish, top with my favorite salsa and heat about 1 minute. This is a great side dish. In addition to or instead of salsa, heat some canned beans (vegetarian, pinto, kidney cannelli) and top the potato. This is now a meal that has protein. You could add some cooked chicken or meat or tuna fish to this potato.

I sometimes dice up 2 potatoes and sauté them in a large fry pan with some cooking spray. You could add mushrooms or peppers or onions and sauté them all together. Now add either 4 eggs, or equivalent amounts of egg whites or egg substitutes. Now you have an omelet or a frittata. Top with a tsp of grated parm cheese..Yummy for lunch or dinner.

But my favorite way to make “Special spuds” is…..

Take the baked potatoes and slice them about 1/8 inches thick. Cover a cookie sheet with foil. Spray the foil with cooking spray. Place the sliced potatoes (one layer) on the cookie sheet and now spray the potatoes with cooking spray. Next season with a combo of salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion salt, basil, oregano, dill…any or all of the above. Put in a 400 degrees preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes until crisp and golden. Serve immediately. You can serve them with ketchup, mustard, salsa, marinara sauce. This is our most favorite side dish of potatoes. And because I only slice 2 potatoes, we are eating a controlled portion.

You could also slice up your potato, put it on a pizza pan, add your pizza sauce, toppings and some fat free or low fat cheese and have a potato pizza.