Southwestern Potato Skins

I seriously contemplated calling this post "The Great Jalapeno Hunt" but that would have just confused everyone.

This post was the hardest recipe I've made in a long time. Not skill wise. No, actually it was really easy. But frustration level? That's a different story. It jumped out at me and screamed, "Make me NOW!" So of course I obliged. It's the perfect timely Superbowl snack. I went to the grocery store that night and gathered the ingredients, anxious to make these delicious little treats. Except I forgot corn. And then my onion was moldy. And then.. I lost my jalapeno.

How exactly do you lose a jalapeno? Well, that's a very good question. I'm still wondering that myself. I swear it was there hanging out with my tomato on the counter when I went back to the store for the fourth time in a week to replace my moldy onion. When I came back not even 20 minutes later, the jalapeno was gone. GONE.

I tore this place apart looking for it. I mean, a jalapeno doesn't just disappear. I looked in the sink. In the trash. Under the stove, the dishwasher, the fridge. Every place I've ever found a cat toy before. Under the couch. Behind the couch. Every place I could think the cat might have knocked it off and batted it to. For over a half an hour I searched every inch of my house. Laying on the floor shining a flashlight under things. Moving furniture. I even looked in my PURSE for goodness sake. (Because it was the only place left I hadn't looked.) And what did I find? A whole lot of cat toys, but no jalapeno. It's gone. My jalapeno just vanished into thin air.

But finally after trip #5 to replace my Houdini pepper, I was able to pull these out of my oven and snap a few pictures to share with you before I shoved them into my face. Here's the thing--truthfully, I don't like half the ingredients in these. I hate onions, loathe beans, despise tomatoes, and don't care for cilantro. But I can guarantee you I ate every last bit destroyed these. It's definitely a case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts.

They're absolutely perfect for a Big Game party. They're super easy to put together, they can be made ahead of time to save yourself some hassle and stress, and they're utterly delicious. Best of all, unlike a lot of potato skins that are smothered in cheese and bacon, there's no meat in these, so vegetarians and meat eaters alike can nosh on tasty snacks while cheering for their favorite team (or favorite commercial). And since they're full of vegetables and come from Clean Eating magazine, we can pretend that they're reasonably healthy! Maybe?

Just be sure to keep a close eye on your ingredients so nobody makes a daring escape.

Southwestern Potato Skins
From Clean Eating Magazine Jan/Feb 2013
Makes 16 snacks

Eight 6-ounce potatoes, scrubbed
½ medium red onion, chopped finely
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 large tomato, seeded and diced
½ cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup frozen corn kernels
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
¾ teaspoon chile powder
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
½ to ¾ cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ to 1 cup lowfat sour cream
Several sprigs of cilantro, finely chopped
¼ cup finely chopped scallions (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly mist with cooking spray. Prick each potato with a fork several times and arrange on baking sheet. Bake for 50 minutes, turning once, until potatoes are tender when pierced with a knife. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely, about 1 hour.
2. While potatoes are cooling, make filling: In a large nonstick skillet sprayed lightly with cooking spray over medium heat, cook onion and jalapeno together, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomato, black beans, corn, cumin, and chile powder, stirring to combine, and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. (Steps 1 and 2 can be made ahead of time. Cover each separately and refrigerate up to a day in advance. Start Step 3 about 15 to 20 minutes before you’re ready to serve.)
3. Preheat broiler. If you’ve made your potatoes and filling ahead of time, line a baking sheet with foil lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Otherwise, reuse the baking sheet you baked your potatoes on in Step 1. Cut potatoes in half, lengthwise, and scoop out the flesh, leaving a ¼-inch shell, reserving the insides for another use. Place potatoes, skin side up on prepared baking sheet, drizzle lightly with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Broil potatoes for 4 to 5 minutes or until the skins are golden and crisp.
4. To assemble: Remove potatoes from oven, leaving the broiler on, and carefully flip then over so the skin side is down. (Use tongs—they’ll be hot.) Fill each potato with bean mixture and top with a mound of shredded cheese. Return to oven and broil for 1 to 2 minutes more, until cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from oven and top with sour cream, cilantro, and scallions if using. Serve immediately.
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Anonymous said...

Yum, these look absolutely delicious!

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