This appetizer is a spin on traditional potato skins, but much easier if you ask me. Just boil, smash and bake then sprinkle with your favorite toppings. Eat them with your hands or with a fork, there’s no wrong way!
Since there was no school on Tuesday and my husband had to work, my mom and I took the kids to a local attraction here in Ft Lauderdale called Flamingo Gardens. They have acres and acres of landscaping, peacocks roaming everywhere and wild animals in enclosures. They do a lot of wild life rescues and rehabs. One of the rescues they did a few years ago was that of a black bear. Since my mom knows the guy who cares for Josh (that’s the bear’s name) we got to go behind the scenes and feed him. By hand!! With just a metal fence in between us. He was super calm and so were the kids. They were naturals feeding him tomatoes, apples, strawberries and a Twix bar! It was such a neat experience, one they will never forget.
While we were there we found an empty barn-like structure that was enclosed. Inside were some photography photos hanging on the walls, but other than that it was empty. Since we were the only ones in there the kids started running around and just being silly. A few minutes later a man and his young son (maybe 10 years old) walked in. My mom, who was sitting by the door, quickly said, “This is a babysitting service in here”. He then said, “Oh okay” and turned around and walked out. I just started laughing and shaking my head, but who wouldn’t think it was really a child watch service?! Five children running around acting crazy could not all be part of the same family, right?! Fast forward about 3 minutes and HE RETURNS!! This time he walks in and starts encouraging his son to engage in the fun. Bahahahaha!!!! My mom and I are now dying inside knowing he is back to have us watch his son!! I quickly walk up to him, as I am encouraging my kids to leave, and tell him “These are all my kids, my mom was just kidding!”. He couldn’t believe we were all together, he was really back to check out the service! Whew! Close one. My mom’s “jokes” get her (and me) into trouble sometimes!
Back to food. These loaded smashed potatoes are a perfect game day appetizer. Or maybe you just want them as a side dish. They are crispy and full of flavor just like a potato skin, but with more potato flavor since you’re not scooping out the inside. Follow the original recipe and then add bacon, chives and sour cream on top.