A tasty spinach filling rises appetisingly inside these delicious soufflé potatoes.
A meal in itself or an indulgent side dish that’s perfect for Pesach!
“Why are you making these this week?!” asked DH, when he learned what was for dinner. Since these souffle potatoes are such a perfect Pesach dinner, it’s almost absurd to eat them the week before the festival! However, we got three big baking potatoes and a bag of spinach in our organic box, and regardless of the calendar, this seemed a good way to use them.
Simple but special
I really love soufflé potatoes. They turn an ordinary jacket potato into something altogether more special, and they’re really easy to make. The spinach in these made them extra yummy. It also meant I could leave out the grated cheese, making these healthier as well as more delicious. My daughter Kipper scoffed down the light spinachy soufflé filling but declared the best bit to be the crispy baked potato skins.
I started off the jacket potatoes in the microwave, before baking them in the oven. This was entirely done for speed, so if you were not in a hurry, you could skip the microwave stage and simply bake them in the oven for an hour or so until soft. I always think that oven-baked potatoes have a crispier skin, although since these spent a good 45 minutes in the oven anyway, I’m not sure it made a huge difference.
We had these as a main dish, with a simple sliced tomato salad, but you could also serve them as a fancy side dish. And while they are perfect for Pesach, they’re delicious the rest of the year too.
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Spinach soufflé potatoes
- 3 baking potatoes
- 1 medium leek
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 250 g fresh spinach leaves (1 large bag, approx. 8½ cups)
- 2 eggs, separated
- 75 g cream cheese (approx. ⅔ cup)
- ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- Scrub the potatoes and stab each one several times with a fork. Put on a plate and microwave on high for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F).
- Remove the potatoes from the microwave, and transfer to a baking sheet in the hot oven. Bake for a further 20-25 minutes until soft.
- While the potatoes are baking, trim and slice the leek, and sauté in the olive oil over a low-medium heat until very soft - around 7-10 minutes.
- Remove the stems from the spinach and wash the leaves well. Remove as much water as possible (I use a salad spinner), and add to the leek a little at a time, stirring well to wilt the leaves. Once all the leaves are added and softened, remove from the heat.
- Process the leek-spinach mixture briefly with a hand blender, then transfer to a bowl. Stand for a few minutes then drain off any liquid that accumulates.
- Whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks and set aside. Add the yolks to the spinach with the cream cheese, nutmeg and pepper, and mix well.
- Remove the potatoes from the oven. Carefully cut in half lengthways and scoop out the flesh to leave a thin 'shell'. Return the 'shells' to the baking sheet and set aside.
- Mash the potato flesh roughly with a fork, then stir into the spinach mixture. Finally, gently fold in the whisked egg whites.
- Pile the mixture back into the reserved potato skins, and return to the oven for 20-25 minutes until risen, golden, and set. Serve at once.
For other ways to make baked potatoes special, take a look at this list of great jacket potato ideas.