Stupid Question? Brining Potatoes?
I love a good baked potato - my current method is to roast them at 500 degrees for 40 minutes, slathered in garlic, salt, coarse pepper, and rosemary. The outside tastes wonderful, but I need lots of butter and or sour cream for the inside (and more salt)
I love all of the condiments that are usually served with baked potato them, but a potato can be a fat/calorie magnent. I'm going to try it, unless someone replies with some bad experience!
I've also tried salsa, and ketchup, and other things to cut down on the fat, with some success.
Is it possible to brine so that the flavors infuse the entire potato, eliminating the need for condiments at all? I'd like to cut it open and just grate some cheese on it, eliminating butter, etc.
You don't want to introduce more water into a baking potato.
Another approach: use a tablespoon of pesto. A little goes a long way, flavor-wise, and it's great on baked potato.
I like to open my potatoes, add course salt, pepper and scallions or chives. THEN, cover with sour cream (I use fat free or low fat). The steam that's trapped between the hot potato and sour cream helps to infuse the flavor of the herbs through the spud. I don't even bother with butter.
I can't comment on the brining. If you're thinking about this from a health perspective, I can imagine some people would have issues with the amount of salt a brining technique would use.
One relatively healthy food I eat with sweet potatoes and butternut is cream cheese. It's tangy AND creamy. I usually add some spices (smoked paprika, dukkah, etc) or herbs, but the cream cheese fulfils my creaminess requirements.
How about buttermilk as a baked potato moistener? If it's so great in mashed potatoes, might be good splashed on the flesh of a piping hot baked tater, too...
And since you started the topic of healthiness, I'll also add: sweet potatoes and new potatoes are healthier than normal, giant spuds according to the Glycemic Index. They are less starchy, and as a result are less likely to be quickly digested and injected into your blood stream as sugars (I'm sure someone out there can give a more technical explanation than me!). And I'm pretty sure that sweet potatoes are higher in fibre. I don't think of this as particularly killjoy information, as I love both sweet and baby potatoes!
Happy eating, whatever you chow on.
Also, it should be remembered that, if you are concerned about glycemic issues, coating simple starches like potato with a moderate amount of fat helps to reduce glycemic reactions. One major reason that glycemic issues have become more widespread in the past generations is that folks, in an effort to continue to eat larger portions but with less fat to leverage caloric load, have been eating a lot more simply carbohydrates with less fat to help protect them.
The law of unintended consequences.
It's better simply to eat a reasonable balance of fat, carbs and proteins and eat smaller portions (which were once considered normal portions), rather than try to gimmick the balances against fats.
If you can find good fresh yukon or other tasty gold potato, try baking those. We prefer these baked instead of russet potatoes, they are moister and much more flavor.
I guess you could also get a cooking syringe " flavor injector" and inject melted flavored butter ( garlic? ) when the potato is 2/3's cooked...