Or alternatively The Most Inventive Thing I’ve Ever Done In The Kitchen. And I didn’t use ginger. I didn’t even use chilli…!
1 baking potato
6-8 stalks of fresh rosemary
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic glove, finely chopped
8 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 tbsp tomato purée
salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 220oC/425oF/Gas Mark 7. With a sharp knife, carefully cut slits all the way through the potato in a semi-regular pattern.
Optional: Spread a little rock salt on a plate, wet the skin of the potato and roll in the salt. Apparently this helps draw moisture out of the skin so it gets super-crispy.
Put the baked potato in the microwave on the highest setting for approximately 5-6 minutes. Remove when the potato gives under a little pressure from your hand – but be careful, it will be hot!
Leave the potato to cool on the side. Fetch your rosemary sticks and use a knife to carefully whittle down the ends to sharper points – this makes for easier insertion…*snigger*. Once your potato is cool enough, poke the rosemary stalks through the pre-cut slits until it comes out the other side. If you have any bit sticking way out of the potato, cut them off and save them or insert them in another slit, otherwise they’ll just crisp up in the oven and be horrid. Once done your potato should look something like this:
Put your potato into the oven for 30-40 minutes, until a nice crispy skin has formed. Be careful, leaving it too long will lead to a dried out interior – I’m sure you all know your ovens best so just cook as you would a normal jacket potato. Meanwhile make up your ragu.
Heat a little olive oil in a saucepan and add the onion and garlic. Sweat for 6 minutes before adding a glug of balsamic vinegar. After a further couple of minutes add your tomatoes, tomato purée, a really good twist of pepper and a good pinch of salt. At this stage I also threw in the “leaves” of rosemary that came from cutting my rosemary stalks. Lower the heat, cover and stir occasionally. If anything starts to stick to the bottom of the pan, add a drop of water, stir and recover. Cook for approximately 15 minutes then remove the lid and reduce sauce to a really thick, sticky, gooey, gloopy, pan of wonderment.
Remove the potato from the oven – remember hot! Tadaa:
Cut open gently – you could remove the rosemary stalks if you want to but I chose to leave mine in and eat around them. Slather your potato with lashing of butter and top with the ragu. Simple yet damn delicious.