I was feeling super ambitious on one of my recent days off, and decided to shock my husband by making dinner. Yes, guys, that really does throw him for a loop when I do crazy stuff like that. He seriously does 90% of the cooking in this house.
Usually, my cravings of the day rule my brain when I’m deciding what to make. That particular day, I knew I wanted potatoes. We were having hamburger patties (that’s right, just patties, no bread, that’s how we roll – pun intended) and I didn’t want the regular mashed potatoes.
Pinterest to the rescue. Now, this was one of those “fun” links that doesn’t go to the original blog and lists the directions/ingredients in the comment line below the picture, so be warned.
Here are the instructions on the pin I found:
Better Baked Potato! Make 1 inch cuts into potato and stuff onion slices, butter, garlic and spices inside! Spray with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roll it up in foil and bake it! Ninety minutes to potato perfection!
So what you want to do is this – get your potato, sliced onion, butter, salt, and pepper ready. Oh, and your foil. Cut (width-wise) slices throughout the potato, but not all the way through to the bottom. You want it to remain in one piece. I alternated onion/butter because I am OCD like that, but you do it however you want! You really have to push the onion and butter down into the potato – it took me a while to get it together. I sprinkled each one with salt flakes, fresh ground pepper, and a skosh (yes, that’s a word in my house) of olive oil. Wrap it up in foil, and stick in the oven for 90 minutes.
It didn’t tell me what temperature to bake them at. Off to the internet I go, because I can never remember this crap. The internet told me to bake them at 300° for 90 minutes – now, I believe everything the internet tells me (ha), so I did it. Yep, didn’t work. I think it needed to be more like 400° or so, because we turned the heat up for a while longer when they were still hard in the middle. Sheesh, internet, you failed me.
Once they were out and finally BAKED, they were awesome. 5 stars. Definitely a keeper. I’m sure they would be great with garlic and all that jazz, but I have not been feeling garlic for a while now – I am not sure why I have this strange aversion, but I do.
Now for the lesson:
I took a picture of the “before” potato – before I baked it in the foil. At the time, I thought, “Sweet, I actually remembered to take a picture of my food!” – if you’re a blogger, you feel me on this. EVERYTHING looks just great on your tiny phone camera.
Blow it up on the laptop? Different story. I didn’t think it looked TOO bad, but I was on the fence about it, so I asked Tarah for her opinion. I know she will always give it to me straight, and I know that I won’t get butthurt about it either. We’re cool that way. Her exact words after I emailed her the doctored-up picture with the simple subject line, “Yes or no”:
“It looks like a sliced up kidney with butter on foil :)”
I had my answer. I was leaning towards no, but I needed another set of eyes to confirm. Just because you cooked it and it tasted good does NOT mean that it looks good. I know that there are some major food blog snobs out there that won’t even give you a second look if you don’t photograph every single recipe you put out there – and that’s fine, I don’t need those fools as readers anyway – but I realize that I am not a professional photographer. Hello, I use my PHONE as a camera because I am lazy. You can only do so much with a phone camera. I take pictures, and if they don’t completely suck, I usually add them into my posts.
If they DO suck, I make a nice little graphic like I did at the top of this post instead of posting a grody looking picture of food. That still gives you, the reader, something to pin (because that is very important these days!) AND you don’t have to look at the nasty-looking casserole I made! Bonus!
And since I know you are all dying to see this kidney picture (it’s not THAT bad), here it is. Poor little rejected potato picture.
Boom. Go make a baked potato and try to take a better picture of yours!