Get the facts on baking a potato—and then some!
The short answer is yes! However, a lot depends on the gauge (thickness) of the nail and its length.
Thicker nails hold more heat and will radiate that heat to the center of the potato to speed up cooking. If the nail is too thick, it will be difficult to pierce the potato. For a potato nail to be effective, it needs to penetrate completely through the potato so equal lengths of the point and head of the nail protrude on both ends of the potato. More on potato nails will be discussed later under "Cooking gadgets."
The following information will give some insight into facts and cooking gadgets to help you achieve the ultimate baked potato. Now it's up to you!
Facts to consider before baking:
Almost everyone likes potatoes, and they can be cooked so many different ways—it just takes a little creativity and practice; however, here are some facts to consider before baking potatoes.
Briefly, a potato is a versatile, nutrient-dense edible tuber vegetable. While there are roughly 4,000 different varieties of potatoes, they are categorized into a few main groups: russet, red, white, yellow ("Yukon"), and purple. The variety of potato you select, its size, and how you cook it (baked, microwaved, fried, boiled, etc.) can have a bearing on its dietary and nutritional value.
The potato is a good source of vitamin C, hard-to-get vitamin B6, minerals, and essential trace elements such as manganese, chromium, selenium, and molybdenum. It's low sodium and high in potassium and also offers fiber, protein, iron, and carbohydrates.
Potatoes cost just pennies per serving and provide good nutrition and relatively few calories for the money. Unfortunately, many of us eat potatoes in unhealthy ways. We like greasy French fries, potato chips, and potato skins piled with cheese, bacon, and condiments high in saturated fats. We are guilty of loading up baked potatoes with butter and sour cream instead of selecting healthier toppings such as hummus, butter alternatives, onions, steamed broccoli, and salsa, to name a few.
The potato skin:
Potato skins store many nutrients and contain a lot of fiber; a large percentage of the vitamins, minerals, and trace elements in a potato are found within or immediately below the skin. Leaving potato skins on during cooking helps preserve those nutrients.
Small potatoes baked in their skins will bake more quickly than large ones and therefore retain more of their vitamin C whereas larger potatoes baked in their skins may lose between 20 percent to 40 percent of vitamin C content.
What type of potato should I use for baking?
Just about any potato can be used for baking, but the most commonly used are russet and/or Russet Burbank and King Edward. These are considered starchy, baking, or mealy potatoes, and the starch is what gives potatoes their characteristic fluffiness. It is highly recommended that a mature baking-type potato be used to get the desired pure white and fluffy texture on the inside.
Also look for potatoes with even brown-tone skins without a greenish cast and no bruises, discolored spots, or sprouts. If you plan to bake several at one time, choose potatoes with uniform shapes and sizes so they cook evenly and get done at the same time.
Get the facts on baking a potato—and then some! continues on Page 2.
|Spud Spikes® potato nails are food-grade 100% stainless steel nails. When inserted into potatoes before baking, they help transfer oven heat to the potatoes' centers, allowing them to cook outward. This decreases overall baking time and saves you money. No kitchen should be without them—order your set of eight today!|
This goes without saying, but I will say it anyway: protect your fingers, hands, and arms when working in and around an oven or BBQ, especially when removing a hot potato and/or hot Spud Spikes® potato nails. Use oven mitts or kitchen tongs when handling hot potatoes and/or hot Spud Spikes. Spud Spikes are sharp-pointed food utensils that requires care when handling, inserting, or if accidentally dropped. Never handle by the point, never have your hand in front of the point when inserting, and never attempt to catch the spike if it should fall. Spud Spikes are not designed for microwave use.
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Related Search Terms: Spud Spikes, Baking Potatoes, BBQ Potatoes, Steaming Potatoes, potato nails, spud nails, potato skins, Page 1