Test Kitchen - Bleu Cheese Stuffed Potato

So last week's Test Kitchen ingredient was Bleu cheese but I happened to buy an extremely strong-tasting variety so my options felt limited. However, what better way to soften that with a lot of sour cream, potato, and buttermilk? It appeased both my Bleu cheese-loving younger brother and my Bleu cheese-indifferent self. Check out this recipe for a hearty appetizer!

Step 1: Ingredients (yields 8 servings)

  • olive oil, for crisping
  • 4 medium baking potatoes
  • 1-2 oz. Bleu cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 4 tbsp butter, unsalted and chunked
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Optional: cheese for topping

Step 2: Preparing the ingredients
Preheat your oven to 400°F. Wash your potatoes thoroughly and dry. Rub olive oil on the skin of that potatoes in order to help it crisp. Place into the oven on a baking sheet or directly on the rack for 1 hour. In a separate large mixing bowl, crumble Bleu cheese, cut butter into chunks, add salt, and add sour cream.

Step 3: Mixing ingredients
When the potatoes are done, remove from the oven and let cool a little. Slice in half and scoop out softened potato into mixing bowl. Mix everything thoroughly in the bowl and add buttermilk slowly to ease mixing. When the mixture is smooth and light, scoop back into the crispy potato skins. Place back into hot oven on the baking sheet for 12-15 minutes.

Step 4: Finishing
Remove potatoes from oven when done. To embellish your dish, add grated cheese for topping and maybe even bacon (who can deny bacon?!). Place back into oven for 3-5 minutes and then remove to serve. Enjoy!

This week's Test Kitchen ingredient: pearled barley

"Pearl barley (or "pearled barley") is barley processed to remove its hull and bran. Barley must have its fibrous outer hull removed before it can be eaten; pearl barley is taken a step further, polished to remove the nutritious bran layer.

Pearl barley is the most common form of barley for human consumption, probably because it cooks faster and is less chewy than other, less-processed forms of barley. This is in contrast to "hulled barley" or barley groats, which preserves the bran, or "pot barley" (also known as "Scotch barley"), in which the bran is not removed.

Pearl barley is similar to wheat in its caloric, protein, vitamin and mineral content, though it differs in that some varieties are high in lysine. It is cooked mainly in soups and stews, also as an ingredient for stuffing cooked potages or sweet dishes. It is the primary ingredient of the Italian dish orzotto." [Wikipedia]

Photography by Minerva Thai.