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Jacket Potatoes VS Baked Potatoes

  I visited England when I was a university student. Using long vacation,I visited pen pals in England. One day, one of my pen pals took me to pub. It was cozy looking pub on top of steep hill.

I had very tasty potato at the pub. I did not remember what the menu was for my meal because I asked my friend to pick for me. All I know is just potato.

 Living here in US for 6 years now,I started thinking it could have been “Baked Potatoes”,but when I google on baked potato,it turned out it is called “Jacket potatoes”.

 Jacket potato is baked potato with peel on. This is by far my favorite dish to have with my steak (my husband would say “Gouda mashed potatoes” I make will be better). It is quick easy and never fail to make the tasty baked potatoes.

In Japan, we do not have baked potatoes as dish,but in fall, people dig up sweet potatoes (Note: Japanese sweet potatoes are quite different from American Yum or American sweet potatoes.The peel is purple color and fresh is yellow color and it has more texture in bite.Much less moisture asnd texture is more like Russet potato here in the states.) and wrap it up in foil and bake them long time with charcoal stone.

Or, you hear old guy sings out loud “Ya ki i mo—- Ya ki i mo– O i shi i yo.” (translation: baked sweet potato baked sweet potatoes.Very tasty” and he comes with van and drive around the neighborhood.

You can make baked sweet potatoes on top of gas heater (my family had gas heater). It takes longer but it was good.

In winter, we used to put unpeeled tangerine on top of gas stove and we unpeeled it and ate it after shower time.It may sound weird but it is tasty.

So, when my parents visited us in US before, we took them to seaside restaurant.

Then,there they had baked potatoes and they were raved about it.

First of all,size of vegetable here in USA is much bigger and potatoes are not exception.So,size of the potatoes,size of the meal also made them go “Wow”.

Anyway,”Jacket potatoes”.. according to “London in a flat” site, it seems, it is a norm to eat the Jacket potato with some filling after making slit. Topping can be cheese&bean,tuna & corn, spicy tuna, salmon & cream cheese,chili,mayo with shrimp, curry…. and one of my English book that I have about Britain says toasted bean can be a topping for Jacket potato.

This is more like a meal,not side dish.

It is interesting idea to put all kinds of topping on Baked potato not just butter or cheese.I may try the topping next time when I make Baked potato but I do not think I will go for Tuna and corn. This combination does not sound it tasty in my head,lol.

To read more on Jacket potato on London in a flat,please click here.

For Jacket potato topping ideas,please click here.

Making baked potatoes is easy. Perfect all the time. Here is how I make it.

1.Wash potatoes (Russet Potatoes) very well,and poke it around all over with fork.

2.Wrap the potato one by one with foil

3.Bake in Oven temperature 425F for 60-80 minutes

What I usually do is that,when timer goes off,I take potato out and make cross slits into potato and squash the potato from both sides,then I put 1table spoon worth of butter stuck in the slit,and re-wrap the potatoes and put it in turned-off oven.

My husband’s baked potato is usually with cheddar cheese so,I put handful of shredded cheddar cheese in the slit,re-wrap it and put into turned-off oven.

This helps filling melt and flavors soak into potato fresh and it is also good idea to keep them in oven til other side dish is ready to serve.  Warm potatoes are better than cold potatoes

I wrote,my husband likes my Gouda mashed potatoes.It is easy to make and tasty. You can make it next time.

When I make mashed potatoes/shepered pie topping, I do not use regular potatoes.

I use Yukon Gold Potatoes. It is more creamy texture and  it definitely taste much better than regular potatoes. With baked potatoes,I do not use Yukon gold potatoes. I use Russet potato because it has more texture to it and best suits to the dish.

I usually wash potatoes, wrap them in plastic wrap, and put it on the microwaveable plate and cook them. 1 potatoes needs 3 minutes plus one minute.

If you use 3 potatoes,3 potatoesx3 minutes+1 minutes=10minutes. It depends on size of the potatoes but,usually I use 3-4 potatoes for 2 adult serving. It yield probably 3 serving for adult worth but my husband likes it so much that heats it a lot so,it is usually a good amount for us to make.

After cooked in the microwave, I use chopstick to get peel off and I mash them with masher.

After that,I sprinkle kosher salt,and put 1-3 table spoon worth of butter and I add 1-2 handful of shredded smoked Gouda cheese and let it melt by heat.Then,I add splash of milk and stir,and add 1-2 table spoon of sour cream and keep adding milk til desired texture. Then,season it with pepper and it is done.

For color,I add chopped parsley or chives and, sometimes,garnish it with chopped crispy bacon on top. For bacon,I usually use Center cut bacon because it is less fat.

Tips to make nice crispy bacon is to took it in skillet till almost done,and drain it well (hold the bacon in the air 3-7 seconds) and put it on paper towel. This makes crispy bacon.

However, the best way to make really crusty bacon is to deep fry them.It drains off the fat and makes super crispy bacon strips you have tasted.

For tips for cutting chive, after wash it under the running water,hold the chive on top of whatever you want to put the chive in and snip them with scissors. That way,you do not have to chase the chopped chive on cutting board and easy way to add chive into your dish.

I think many of you are fan of baked potato but what toppings do you put over baked potatoes (Jacket potatoes)?? 


Apr 18, 2009 | Comments are off | Travel

Subway VS Underground

 When I was a college student, I used summer vacation or winter vacation to visit some of my friends living overseas. One of the places I visited was England. I visited London,and small city near Manchester,and city was filled with very nice looking castle-like building even regular Post office and,you see 2 storied red colored bus,policeman riding nice looking horse, and nice cobble stone road.. it was really new and exciting experience there.

 At college,I majored in English and, got license to teach English to Junior high and high school student. So,I was not too worry about not being able to communicate with people in England, but when I actually experienced conversations or signs in England,some of the words and phrases were quite new to me.

Therefore,I thought for this entry,I will write on difference between British English and American English.

 In Japan, when I was at school,we started learning English from junior high school years. I think Japan is now changed its rule and start teaching English much younger age from elementary school years. The textbook is using American English.

 Anyway, one of the thing I encountered was sign of transportation. In England,people call “Tube” or “underground” for what American people call “Subway”. Then,in England, “subway” means roads that you go under the road and come out to other side of the road.

 Some of the stations have signs that say “subway””underground” both next each other. I first thought that it is for American people to understand what they think subway as is there.

 Turned out it is not that way but rather, such station has long road that goes under the road and some people can use tubes(subway in American English) and some people can keep walking, then you come out to the other side.So, it is “subway” because of this road under the road,and underground because you can also go under the road to hop on to train as well.

 It seems people call the train “tube” because train shape is roundish and just like tube.

 Have you been to somewhere and found strange sign or phrases??

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Mar 29, 2009 | Comments are off | Travel