Twice Baked Potatos

TWICE BAKED POTATOES with Pancetta and Asiago Cheese
McGuires Irish Pub

Makes 2 dozen

1 1/4 lbs. small white creamer potatoes or new potatoes
2 oz. pancetta or bacon, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 oz. Asiago cheese, grated fine to yield a scant 1/2 cup
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup heavy cream, scalded
3 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons snipped fresh chives
2 teaspoons white truffle oil  (optional)
2 cups rock salt
1/4 oz. shaved white truffles for garnish

Heat the oven to 375 degrees with the rack in the center. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and bake until soft when pierced with the tip of a knife, 20-35 minutes depending on type and exact size of potatoes. Set aside. Keep the oven at 375 degrees. Meanwhile, cook the pancetta in a small skillet over medium high heat until crisp, 4-6 minutes. When cool, cut the pancetta into 1/8 inch dice.

When the potatoes are cool enough to handle but still warm, cut them in half lengthwise. Use a small melon baller to scoop out the centers, reserving the shells with a 1/8 inch border to keep the potatoes stable. Pass the scooped-out potato filling through a ricer or a food mill fitted with a medium disk. Alternatively, push the filling through a sturdy sieve. Immediately transfer the potato filling to a medium bowl. Add the salt and pepper. Pour in the scalded cream. Use a spatula to stir in the pancetta, sage, chives and 1 teaspoon of the truffle oil. Spoon 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon of the potato mixture into the 24 nicest looking shells. The amount will vary with the size of the potatoes. Discard the unused shells. Sprinkle each potato with the remaining cheese.

Spread the rock salt onto a rimmed baking sheet. Arrange the potatoes on top and return to the oven until warmed throughout and browned lightly on top, 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and drizzle with the remaining truffle oil. Garnish with shavings of white truffles. Use rock salt on tray and arrange warm potatoes on it.