Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Spinach Alfredo Twice Baked Potato

[FTC Standard Disclosure]  I received no compensation for this post.

We were going to make the classic steakhouse combination of steak, baked potato, and cream spinach this weekend.  But I had a different idea when I got home with the goods - a spin on a twice-baked potato:  Spinach Alfredo Twice Baked Potato.  

Spinach alfredo twice baked potato with Certified Angus Beef Brand Ribeye Steak

I stuffed it with spinach, bechamel sauce, fontina cheese and topped it with parmesan cheese and bread crumbs.  This isn't a recipe post, it's a free cook where I was just testing out an idea.  The result was a winner.  Here's what we did.  

I started with 4 medium-sized Russet potatoes.  I scrubbed them, washed them, and applied a bit of oil, maybe a teaspoon or so, on each potato.  Then I seasoned them with Kosher salt and wrapped them with foil.

Baking potatoes on a Big Green Egg kamado grill.
I put the potatoes in a grill set up for indirect heat at 375° f.  The particular grill was a Big Green Egg, but you can do this on just about any indirect grill.  I let them go until they were slightly tender when squeezed, about 1 hour.  Then I let them rest for 30 minutes.

How to make twice baked potatoes
Then we sliced off the top of each potato and used a spoon to scrape out the pulp from inside the potato.  

How to make twice baked potatoes
Save the pulp, that goes into the stuffing.

We wilted a bunch of fresh spinach and put it in a colander to drain while I made the white sauce (bechamel).  I melted 2 tbsp of butter and whisked in 2 tablespoons of AP flour to make a blond roux.  Next, I added 1 cup of half and half, whisking continuously.  I added 1/8 teaspoon of white pepper, 1/8 teaspoon cayenne, and kosher salt to taste. Then we chopped up the spinach and added it to the bechamel.  It had a little zip to it.

Next, I added the "spinach alfredo" to the potato and added 1/2 cup of shredded fontina cheese.  I mashed that all together and tasted it one last time for seasoning.  It tasted good enough to eat, just like that.

I stuffed that mixture into the potato shells and topped them with freshly grated parmesan.  Then I added panko bread crumbs and drizzled them with melted butter.

Cooking twice baked potatoes on a Big Green Egg kamado grill
I put the stuffed potatoes in a skillet, just for ease of handling, and put them back in the Big Green Egg turned up to 400°f until the tops started to brown, about 20 minutes.

Certified Angus Beef Brand ribeye steaks from Food City on Morrell Road
Initially, I went to Food City to buy a porterhouse steak but this pair of Certified Angus Beef® Brand, USDA Prime ribeye steaks totally seduced me.  

Competition style trimmed ribeye steak with NMT Umami Steak Seasoning recipe
I went with my usual - a quick trim, a light coat of oil, and seasoning with my NMT Umami Steak Seasoning recipe.

Dry brine a certified angus ribeye steak with NMT Umami Steak Seasoning
I let that sit, covered, in the fridge for about 2 hours for a short dry-brine.

Certified Angus Beef Brand ribeye steak on a PK Grill with GrillGrates
I grilled the steaks for 4 minutes per side.  My set up was simple - a PK Grill, GrillGrates, and a bed of Kingsford Hardwood Briquettes.  I love my PK Grill because it is old school grilling at its best.
While the steak was cooking, I made hot garlic butter in this tiny cast-iron kettle.  As soon as the steak came off of the grill, I spooned a bit of the garlic butter over it....and potatoes, because why not?

Spinach Alfredo Twice Baked Potatoes
I cooked the potatoes until they were just starting to turn golden brown, right at 20 minutes.

Twice baked spinach alfredo potatoes and certified angus beef brand ribeye steaks from Food CIty
I'm sure the "baked potato and creamed spinach" would have been good too, but we especially liked this combo.  It was a tasty spin on the reliable twice baked potato.  The extras that we made were good warmed up too.