These Twice-Baked Potatoes with Bacon can be served at any dinner party, any time of year! They are big spuds filled with yummy, cheesy goodness!

Twice-Baked Potatoes with Bacon

The moment is here! You know, when you stop and catch your breath from the stunning springtime colors! I love spring, and thought I’d share this gorgeous picture from a walk I took with my friend, Jenny, this week!

Springtime, Rogue Valley

This past week I’ve been thinking about the upcoming weekend ahead of entertaining for so many. It’s always a fulfilling feeling for me after the Easter feast is over; when the last hugs and goodbyes are spoken. Lots of work goes into planning a holiday meal, and being a gracious host is on top of the list for me.

Improve your hosting.

Entertaining for me is very worthwhile. I really love serving people. I put a lot of effort into each dinner party I host, and in a sense, it’s a sacrifice on many levels (the big ones–time and money).

At each event, I like to think of one thing to work on, to improve my hospitality skills. One example (this may sound silly), is to be ready for that first doorbell to ring 1/2 hour early. Last time I hosted, I set a goal for myself and it worked!  I wasn’t scrambling and as rushed the last few minutes before the first guest arrived, I was able to sit down for a minute and breathe.

Change entertaining habits.

Because I’ve learned how good that felt, I’ve already had success, so I feel like I’ve accomplished something new!

I don’t want to fall into a rut, or a habit of always doing the same thing over and over, but I want to be intentional, try new things, and improve!

Less and More

Accomplishment starts with good intentions. And good intentions each day can really change the direction of our lives.

With Easter here this weekend, I hope you throw open your doors to whoever needs a place to come, and enjoy in the process the unexpected blessings!

Happy Hosting!

Twice-baked potatoes with bacon.

The potatoes today are a classic recipe that makes any Sunday brunch or dinner party complete. I personally love twice baked potatoes, and I have a hard time stopping at one half!

And bacon? It’s a meal in itself.

Oh and did I mention? These potatoes will improve your hosting (wink-wink)!

What’s one thing you’d like to improve with your hosting this weekend?

Twice-Baked Potatoes with Bacon

Twice-Baked Potatoes with Bacon
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Twice-Baked Potatoes with Bacon

Adadpted from Food Network Magazine/Sept. 2014.

Ingredients

  • 4 large russet potatoes
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1 cup shredded gouda cheese, about 4 ounces
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced, plus more for topping
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pierce the potatoes in a few places with a fork; place on a microwave-safe plate and microwave, turning halfway through, until tender, about 16 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle.
  • Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally, until crisp, 9 to 11 minutes. Drain on paper towels, reserving the drippings. Roughly chop 4 slices and break the other 2 slices in half; set aside.
  • Slice off the top 1/4 inch of the 4 potatoes lengthwise. Scoop the flesh from 3 potatoes into a medium bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch-thick shell. For the 4th potato, discard the “flesh.” Add 2 Tbsp. of the reserved bacon drippings and the warmed cream to the bowl, and mash with a potato masher or fork until smooth. Stir in the gouda cheese, scallions, parsley, chopped bacon, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper.
  • Season the inside of the potato skins with salt and pepper. Press the back of a spoon down the center of the filling to create a long, deep well. Divide and fill the insides with filling. Brush the outside of the skins with the remaining bacon drippings and transfer to the baking sheet.
  • Return the potatoes to the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and garnish with the bacon and green onion scallions, a drizzle of bacon grease, and the halved bacon strips.
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Twice-Baked Potatoes with Bacon

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