Sea Salt Baked Potatoes

Sea Salt Baked Potatoes

I don't know what happened, but it has been years since I've baked potatoes. And by baked potatoes, I mean the classic kind - crispy jackets that split open to reveal a fluffy white potato interior. The kind of potato flesh that likes to drink butter and mainline salt. On a quick grocery run after returning from Marfa, the russets were calling me. I remembered a simple, sea-salt baked potato recipe in Nigel Slater's Tender, grabbed some arugula, and was pretty confident I had everything else I'd need at home. If you want to know how to bake perfect potatoes, keep reading.

Baked Potato Recipe

On the road trip front, a number of you have asked, somewhat incredulously, why we would drive to Marfa, Texas. To which I sort of tilt my head, and start thinking more about it. There seems to be a long answer and a short answer. The short? We went to see visit this. The longer answer - we drove through Palm Springs, and Valentine, Canyon de Chelly, and Willcox. And cooked at beautiful rest stops, and took lots of pictures, and caught up on magazines, and sat in the sun, and saw this, and ate dinner outside more nights than not. I've driven through the Southwest and parts of northern Mexico a good number of times now, and West Texas is particularly beautiful. When you're out in the middle of the desert, its quiet. So so so so quiet. I love it.

Baked Potato Recipe

The potatoes? Really good too - give them a go. The spicy arugula and luxe dressing works perfectly. Top with a fried egg, and you've got a meal on your hands.

Sea Salt Baked Potato Recipe

5 from 4 votes

I found some fantastic arugula, so that is what I used. But I could imagine using whatever green salad you like - spinach, baby romaine, maiche, etc. And I used big russet potatoes. The dressing calls for a raw egg yolk, if you're uncomfortable eating raw egg, swap in another favorite, luxe or creamy-ish salad dressing - this buttermilk one would be good, or this one, or the gribiche in Super Natural Every Day.

Ingredients
  • 2 large baking potatoes
  • flaky sea salt
  • butter or olive oil
  • 2 large handfuls of arugula
dressing:
  • 1 tablespoon Champagne or tarragon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • a egg yolk
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 400F / 200C degrees. Scrub the potatoes, prick them all over with a fork, and sprinkle generously with sea salt. Bake the potatoes until tender throughout. This can take an hour for large potatoes. Less for smaller spuds.
Make the Dressing:
  1. While the potatoes are baking, make the dressing. Whisk the vinegar, mustard, egg yolk, and olive oil with a big pinch of salt. Then whisk in the cheese, and finally the lemon juice. Taste, make any adjustments, and set aside.
Load up your Potato:
  1. Slice a big cross into the top of each potato, then gently but firmly push in on the ends of each potato. This way the tops open up, and you can begin to spoon out a bit of the potato filling. Add a pat of butter/olive oil to each potato, or a splash of the dressing and a bit of salt. Toss the arugula with a generous amount of the dressing, and then pile it into the potatoes. You'll likely have some leftover dressing to enjoy as needed with the salad and skins.
Notes

Adapted from Nigel Slater's Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch, the US version, published by Ten Speed Press, 2011

Serves
4
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins
 
 
If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Comments

  • Oooh! Excited to see you cooking up Nigel! He's an absolute fave discovered in my teenage years here in the UK. Baked potatoes are fab anyway, but your dressing sounds absolutely mindbogglingly good! Must. Try.

    Ruth
  • those potatoes look great, thanks for sharing! i love the idea of having arugula with them, wouldn't have thought of it.. the 2nd photo sort of reminds me of a magritte painting (if i'm getting my references right!) - the bowler hat & the yellow squares of light. Lovely pic! Katie x

    katie
  • Hello, Heidi! Just started reading your site after hearing much about it, and I must say I'm in love! I'm new to the blogging world myself, and while my blog is very food centric, there's little cooking going on, I must admit (you should check it out though, right now it's focused on Maastricht, the culinary capital of the Netherlands! Ever been?). I want to start though, and you cook exactly the way I like to cook and eat (and the boyfriend's vegetarian, so this site is perfect for him too). I'll be checking back in a lot this summer when I'll be helping my mom work through her CSA basket for a while, and then again when I move to LA later on. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Katie
  • hi heidi - perhaps it's just me being crazy, but at first glance at the leading photo of this post, i thought they were a pair of kid's shoes - then at a closer look, a pair of kid's shoes used as plant pots. it took me a few seconds to register them as baked potatoes loaded with arugula! hahaha. either way, simple baked potatoes served with fresh greens and a good dressing sounds great, and oh yes, do share more photos from your road trip with us!

    chika
  • I live in the desert presently and I must agree that it is quiet. Breath taking at times. Still, hot, dry. Thanks for sharing all those stops. We have family in Texas and this would make a nice couple of stops along the way from Washington.

    Michelle
  • i've never actually baked a potato...i always get scared and microwave them instead! this sounds so good though; the consistency of baked versus microwave is huge, and sea salt? yeah, i'm in!

    Heather (Heather's Dish)
  • This is so simple and beautiful, and I had come to snob a good baked spud over the years. I should throw a couple in the oven the next time I turn it on, or do it the way we used to do when we were children: wrapped in aluminium and thrown in the barbecue almost at the beginning. Even onions are perfect cooked like this, and the subtle smokiness is unbeatable, although some skin patches may burn a bit too much.

    Caffettiera
  • Both your potatoes, and your road trip, look and sound fabulous. When it was just my husband and I B.K. (before kiddo), we took some great road trips. Preschoolers and long road trips don't really mesh well so for us, they are on hiatus, but not the potato recipe. It shall be made, very soon!

    Averie (LoveVeggiesandYoga)
  • Wow, I have not baked a potato in . . . perhaps forever, but I have been more and more drawn to them. Thank you for posting this. I may just have to bake a potato one of these days!

    Rebecca
  • What a fantastic twist on baked potatoes. We always do a baked potato night at my boyfriend's parents' place over the holidays. They haven't really cottoned on to the whole vegetarian thing and what they're supposed to feed us apart from potatoes, beans, and the occasional souffle, but this looks like a step in the right direction. Thanks, Heidi.

    Katie
  • Just a suggestion, as there really cannot be any one right way to bake a spud: Do not prick the skin right away. Coat the spud lightly in oil, and bake for half an hour in a hot oven. This helps steam the inside and crisp the outside. Take a fork to the skins, then continue baking for another half an hour (or till done.

    jhm
  • My boyfriend and I have talked about renting a car, driving down through the mountains, visiting White Sands and heading to Chinati. Then we realized it'd take at least 15 hours and decided it best to wait until we can set a week aside to really enjoy it. But, we did snatch a 15 pound bag of potatoes from the market today. I think I'll be making this recipe more than once - unfortunately, no eggs or cheese for me.

    Ashlae
  • Oh, I haven't had a baked potato in ages and these look great with the arugula. As I have then end of a bag of arugula in the fridge, I might have to get some potatoes on my way home tonight so we can have this for dinner I remember watching a British cooking show so long ago where the cook (it might have been Delia Smith) was making "jacket potatoes" as the Brits call them. She scrubbed her potatoes, dried them and then rubbed them lightly in olive oil before piercing them and baking them. I have tried this and I have to say it make s a wonderful potato skin! As someone who likes to eat the skin of baked potatoes, the slight coating of olive oil gives the skin an added crunch - almost like a twice baked potato skin. Beautiful pictures too. Thanks for sharing! Have a good weekend.

    Susan B.
  • Thank you for yet another Fantastic recipe. Your food blog is my favorite of all time! Did you do any hiking in SE Arizona? Any wine tasting in Willcox? I grew up in that area, and my family now works at a vineyard in the area. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip, and love seeing your beautiful photos!

    Joy
  • What is it about a baked potato and sea salt that makes your mouth water? I have all the ingredients and some arugula growing outside... I think I know what I'm having for dinner!

    Claire @ Claire K Creations
  • Mmm beautiful potatoes (who knew)?! Love the sound of these.

    Katrina
  • Super dreamy road trip, sounds like a relaxing contrast to the newly released cookbook experience :) I love baked potatoes with crispy skins side-by-side with some greens, but nestling them inside the potato is really cute, thanks for sharing!

    Julianna Starr
  • Awww, so happy you love Texas :) That makes my little Texas heart beam with joy! When I was 15, my dad and I went on a roadtrip alone to the McDonald observatory. We drove through Marfa and enjoyed the marfa lights. I have to admit, the rest of the trip is a blur to me because my dad let me drive! For the first time! I learned to drive on those wide open west Texas roads and it was such an unforgettable experience. Anyway, rambling. I agree--it seems white potatoes have been kicked out of my kitchen by sweet potatoes. Maybe they deserve a second chance :)

    DessertForTwo
  • I had these at a picnic once a long time ago and though they were delicious, I never remembered them until about a week ago, and now I find a recipe on your blog! Funny how things work...

    sweet road
  • Do you have a favourite type of sea salt? I'm always so overwhelmed by choices! Pink? Fleur de Sel? Any tips?

    The Healthy Hipster
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