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Baked potatoes with apple

King Edward or Desiree potatoes are best.

ingredients

serves 4
4 large potatoes, about 250 g (9 oz) each
1/2 medium cooking apple
25 g (1 oz) margarine or butter
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 sage leaves, chopped, or 1 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
salt margarine or butter, for greasing

method

1. Heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

2. Scrub the potatoes and with a fork prick each one in 2 places on both, sides. Bake the potatoes in the oven for 1 1/2 hours.

3. Remove the potatoes from the oven (leaving the oven on), allow to cool slightly, then cut each one in half lengthways. Scoop the cooked potato into a bowl, leaving the shells intact. Mash the potato well. Peel, core and finely chop the apple.

4. Melt the margarine in a small frying-pan, add the onion and fry gently until it begins to soften, stirring occasionally. Stir in the apple and cook for a further 2 - 3 minutes, until soft.

5. Stir the apple and onion mixture into the mashed potato. Add the sage, mustard and a little salt. Mix thoroughly.

6. Spoon the mixture back into the potato shells and make criss-cross patterns on the top with a fork for a decorative finish.

7. Put the potato shells in a greased shallow ovenproof dish and return to the oven. Bake for 15 minutes until the tops are browned. Serve piping hot. Alternatively, top the potatoes with grated cheese

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