Friday, January 18, 2013

Super Easy Side Dish

Many of you ladies (and gents) seem to be so fabulous in the kitchen when it comes to cooking.
Y'all seem to LOVE cooking and are INTERESTED in making new and exciting things.

I didn't get that gene.

Cooking is a chore for me and takes too long and there's too much clean up. 
My idea of cooking is pulling a Trader Joe's chicken pot pie out of the refrigerator and popping it in the oven at 375 for 25 minutes. No cooking, no cleaning and they are delicious...even Mr. Fanatic (who used to be a chef thinks so).

When we are going to a party or other get together and we're suppose to bring food, my first reaction is to FREEZE.
Is there a name for a phobia like that?

Pinterest has been a big help. 
I look at the pretty pictures and pin them to my Yum board.
Then I usually send them to Mr. F to make them for me...
I know
So a few weeks ago, I come across this gorgeous picture titled Parmesan Baked Potato Halves  and click on the link that takes me to  Favorite Family Recipes. Click on the link to see the photo.
 Looks yummy, don't you think?
My criteria for a good and easy recipe is  that it can't have any weird ingredients in it. By weird, I mean ingredients that I don't like... and there are many. 

And did I say the recipe has to be easy

If it's complicated, it gets sent immediately to Mr. F.
But this recipe was super easy and doesn't take up your time and you can pretty much pop them in the oven, set the timer and forget about them until the timer goes off.
Here's a pic of how mine came out the very first time I made them
*sticks out chest proudly*
Ok, so shut up already and tell me the recipe, I hear you saying...

Well, here it is:
  • 6 small potatoes, scrubbed and cut in half (if the potatoes are too large, then cut a 1/4" to 1/2" slice out of the center.
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • grated parmesan cheese-(I used Romano)
  • garlic powder
  • other seasonings you like (I used Basil)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. 
Melt butter and pour into a sheet pan and spread evenly across the bottom. Sprinkle the Romano or Parmesan cheese on the butter and do the same with the garlic powder and other seasonings. Put the potato halves face down on the butter and seasonings.  Bake for 40 to 45 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan. Serve with sour cream  or ketchup for dipping.
They were a hit and all three of us liked them. While we were eating them, I said, "Wouldn't they be good with some bacon on them?" Mr. F and daughter also added that green onions would be good.

All  you adventurous cooks can keep reading...the rest of you just skip to the comment section and leave me a note saying how crazy you think I am ; )

So the next day I went to Trader Joe's. This was the reason I went to Trader Joe's to Chase The Blues Away.
Since the recipe was super easy, I thought I'd try to add  a few things and to improvise a little.
I was out of potatoes and sour cream. I had this bacon, cheese dip mix and added a little to the sour cream.

I fried up 2 pounds of bacon I had in the fridge that had to be fried up before it went bad(doesn't have nitrates or nitrites, so it doesn't last forever like the kind that does) I then take all the bacon and freeze it and use it as I need it. Ya know bacon makes everything taste better and I like to get the frying all done at once.

Instead of butter, I used olive oil and of course, romano cheese.

This time, I used Yukon Gold potatoes, instead of Russet, but the Russet's were actually better.

So this time the potatoes had bacon and green onions (which I'm growing in the garden) and Mr. F. dipped them in spiced sour cream.
Either way, they were delicious.
You've got to try these tonight. Don't worry if you don't have bacon, green onions or even the sour cream. The potatoes were so good  and super easy to make without them.

My kind of cooking.

Hope y'all have a great weekend!



  1. You are right, simple, quick and easy! And good for you for improvising and adding the things you like...that is a true sign of a great cook! I love cooking and baking but I admit I would be intimidated if I had a former chef for a hubby! lol! Then again, he makes for a wonderful teacher! :)


  2. These sound wonderful. I will definitley make some. Thanks for the tip. Hugs, Marty

  3. I simply LOVED everything I saw on your YUM list. It's comforting to know that someone else loves all those carbs too. Your recent parm- potato dish will be the side dish for tonights dinner.

  4. Yep, there are a lot of yummy carb pics on my Yum board...unfortunately, Mr. Fanatic and I are on a LOWER carb diet(about 100 to 150 carbs a day) I still eat potatoes and bread, but in a limited amount. As for all those yummy desserts? Mr. F makes them to take with us to a gathering where it will be eaten all up others, but we still get a small piece. It's a win-win!

  5. This is a recipe I can get behind. I am the same...can't have any weird ingredients or I'm not making it. These would be awesome for a football game snack...they look delicious!

  6. My kind of cooking too! And I do know about weird ingredients - if it isn't in my regular pantry it isn't in my cooking. Thanks for this recipe - it look dee-vine. p.s. - I break up the TJ's uncured bacon into the portions I need and then freeze them. That uncured bacon is just delicious, but more that I usually need at one time.

  7. Yum! I love a good, easy recipe! I have a great crockpot spaghetti sauce I need to post - it's the best sauce EVER!

  8. These look awesome, thank you!!!

    And my Trader Joes doesn't carry that bacon, dammit!

  9. Great stuff! I would also try substituting potatoes with...aubergines - less calories with a ton of flavor.

  10. Pam these look so delicious:-) I cook/bake somewhere in between you and those that are super ambitious about it! Mostly it's a chore though! I wish I had a Trader Joes! I have a bunch of bacon I need to cook up like that. :-)

  11. Wow - looks delicious! I didn't know about T Joe's nitrate-less bacon....I'm going to get that for sure! I like to keep it in the fridge. BTW, if you like green beans, try using this ratio: 1 can beans(drained), sprinkle with some brown sugar, add a little crazy-jane mixed up salt, 1 strip of bacon, cover and bake at 350 for 45 min....easy and tastes like southern beans cooked for a while. I usually triple everything.

  12. YUM!!! Thanks for the new recipe I can't wait to give them a try...they look wonderful.

  13. This side dish sounds perfect for the winter months and everything tastes better with bacon. I love meat and potatoes, so I will definitely be trying out your Super Easy Side Dish with a flank steak that's marinaded with one of these marinades recommended by Atlas Steak.


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