23 August, 2008

Sargento Chipotle Cheddar And Spicy Twice-Baked Potatoes

I'm trying to figure out why it took me so long to notice the Sargento Bistro Blends Chipotle Cheddar shredded cheese in the supermarket's ever-more-humongous Cheese Region. It might be because there are now five hundred different types of bagged, pre-shredded cheese hanging in that refrigerated area (not including the store brand varieties.) Or it might be because "chipotle" stuff is so common nowadays that I don't even notice when some corporate food giant decides to add them to another substance and slap a red chile pepper on the front. Doesn't matter, I found some last week and brought it home, and discovered that it really isn't all that bad.

A somewhat dry, medium-sharp orange cheddar, it wouldn't really have much going for it if it weren't for the addition of the chipotle peppers. It works out well for the combination, because the mildish cheese offers an unobtrusive backdrop for the smoky heat of the chipotles. While not exactly the boldest kick in the ass ever to come out of a bag of cheese, the peppers still add a deeper flavor and a pleasant zing. My daughter loves it for quesadillas and cheese omelets.

Meanwhile, I had a bunch of leftover baked potatoes that I wanted to use up. Twice-baked potatoes are always welcome, but let's be honest: they're boring. But would they still be boring if they were twice baked with Chipotle Cheddar?

Spicy Twice-Baked Potatoes

Baked Potatoes (cooled enough to handle, or even chilled is OK )
Sour Cream
Tapatio Hot Sauce
Chipotle Cheddar
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut each baked potato in half the long way, and scoop out the center. Reserve the skins. Mash the potato with sour cream, milk, and hot sauce, then mix well with chipotle cheddar cheese and paprika. Stuff the skins with the cheese-and-potato mixture, season to taste with salt and pepper. Bake uncovered in a 400 F oven until piping hot and melty.

Sorry I don't have exact measurements in the ingredient list - potatoes vary greatly in size. To help you with the proportions, I used somewhat small 4-inch-long Russets, so for each potato (i.e. two halves) I used:

3 tablespoons of sour cream
2 tablespoons of milk
About a teaspoon of Tapatio (you can use any hot sauce you like, but I don't like Tabasco because it's too vinegary.)
A big ol' heaping quarter cup of chipotle cheese (call it 6 tablespoons or so)
A quarter teaspoon of paprika.

They turned out great, and were a big hit. Even my daughter liked them, and she usually doesn't care for twice-baked spuds.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wal Mart stopped selling Sargento Chipotle cheddar slices about 2 years ago where I live. I never understood why since it always sold out. But that's how Wal Mart has always been. If a product sells great, get rid of it! I call Wal Mart's way of doing things "Hillbilly Marketing".