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You can bake almost any potato variety, but floury potatoes will have fluffier textures when cooked and will absorb more fillings and flavours. For best results use a potato labelled as ‘baking’.

In the oven

Baking potatoes in the oven makes the skin go deliciously crunchy and the flesh very fluffy.
Pierce the skin in one or two places. Place in a really hot oven, 200°C, and cook for about an hour (dependent on size). You can tell they are cooked because they are soft to touch. Once cooked, make two cuts on the top and squeeze the base to push the flesh out. Alternatively, cut in half, scoop the flesh out and mash and mix with fillings. Pile the mash back into the potato and return to the oven for a crispy topping.

In the microwave

You can bake potatoes in the microwave, and this is fantastic because it is so fast, but you will not get the crunchy outer skin like you do in the oven. Microwaving is ideal if you are cooking for one or two people. Pierce each potato several times with a sharp knife and place around the edge of the microwave tray. Use the automatic function for cooking or allow 3 to 4 minutes on high for each potato. Two potatoes will take 6 to 8 minutes, three potatoes 9 to 12 minutes.

You can alwasy start off by cooking them in the microwave and finish them off in the oven. You can get the best of both worlds, faster cooking time and a wonderful crunchy skin. As a guide: 4 potatoes cooked on high power for 10 minutes and then finished off in the oven at 200°C for around 10 to 15 minutes.

Healthy tips…

Delicious toppings include baked beans, chilli, tuna and salsa. Serve with a salad. A microwaved or baked potato in its skin contains more fibre than two slices of wholemeal bread, making it an excellent high fibre lunch ‘base’.