Baked Potatoes with Cheesy Beer Topping

October 2, 2007

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Okay, what guy can’t bake a potato? Nuking is a no brainer. But potatoes taste a lot better—and I mean a lot!—if you bake them in a hot oven for an hour or so. The cool part of this recipe, though, is the topping. Cheese … beer … Hey! Who needs women when they have cheese and beer! Well, there’s Sam … HARRY

Buy baking potatoes all approximately the same size and shape. Scrub them with a stiff brush, dry them, and rub with olive oil. Cook them in a microwave according to the manufacturer’s instructions, or bake on the rack of a 400-degree F oven for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until tender when pricked with a fork. Remove to a plate and make a vertical cut in the top center from end to end, half the depth of the potato. Press in the ends to open for topping.

Cheesy-Beer Topping

8 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, grated (2 cups)
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 clove garlic, pressed
2/3 cup beer
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the Cheddar cheese, cream cheese, garlic, beer, and sesame seeds. Cook, stirring frequently, until cheeses are melted. Remove from the heat and add the relish. Store in the refrigerator.
Makes 2 1/2 cups or enough for 6 baked potatoes.

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Beer Bread

July 30, 2007

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Remember Last-Minute Dinner Rolls? Here’s a quick bread you can have on the table in 40 minutes, start to finish. Slather it with sweet butter or Pimiento Cheese, or dip it into a rich, beefy chili. SAM

3 cups self-rising flour
1 tablespoon caraway seed
12 ounces dark beer
1 tablespoon honey

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Combine the flour, caraway seed, beer, and honey and pour into the pan. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until browned. Remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack.
Makes 12 slices.