Whether you' re the gourmet in your family or all thumbs in the kitchen, you know that entertaining calls for crowd-pleasing, no-fail dishes. That's why potatoes are on the menu at so many buffets, brunches, barbecues and special occasion dinners. After all, anyone can prepare a potato. And what guest doesn't like potatoes?
When the doorbell rings and the first guests arrive, no one wants to be stuck in the kitchen, panic stricken over a recipe that didn't quite work. So try selecting a familiar recipe, such as a favorite classic potato dish, and "dressing it up" for the occasion.
Baked Potatoes can be a very elegant accompaniment if you serve them with sour cream or yogurt mixed with fresh herbs, such as rosemary, dill or thyme.
There is nothing tastier at a barbecue or clambake than grilled potatoes. Wrap potatoes in foil and bury them in charcoal. Give them to each guest with their own individual cup of melted butter for "dunking." The taste is unforgettable.
For buffets, lunches and light suppers, make a salad a satisfying side dish by slicing cooked potatoes and tossing them with your favorite vinaigrette and greens.
Make meat and potatoes the star of your next gathering by combining them in one easy-to-prepare, easy-to-clean up dish. Sweet and Sour Pork Chops with Potato Topping (see recipe).
Potato skins are a restaurant favorite, but they're easy to make at home. Try scooping out baked potatoes, stuffing them with your favorite cheeses and bacon bits and running them under the broiler. Guests of all ages will find them irresistible.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Boil the potatoes in enough salted water to cover until slightly soft.
While the potatoes are cooking, brown the pork chops on both sides with just enough cooking oil to prevent sticking. Place the pork chops in a large baking pan and set aside.
When the potatoes are done, drain and spread them over the pork chops.
In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and stir until well mixed. Pour the mixture over the potatoes and pork chops. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until the pork chops are well done. Serve with a tossed green salad and garlic toast.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Peel and shred the potatoes, rinse; then press and drain them between paper towels to remove all excess moisture. Combine the potatoes with 1/2 of the shredded cheese and line a 9-inch greased pie pan (bottom and sides) with the mixture.
Combine the remaining ingredients, blending them well with a wire whisk. Pour gently into the lined pie pan and bake for 45 minutes. Pie should be slightly browned and firm to the touch when done. Cut the pie into wedges and serve.
Makes 8 small or 4 large servings.
Provided by Idaho Potatoes
This page originally published as a FoodDay article in 1997.
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This page modified January 2007
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