When I was a teenager my first job was at McAlister’s Deli in Destin, FL. I actually ended up working there until I was 21 and the general manager! Anyway, they have fantastic food, especially their Mega Sweet Tea, Chocolate Chip Cookies, secret recipe Honey Mustard, and HUGE two pound Spuds. People used to ask me how we found potatoes that big and I’d always say they are special Idaho Potatoes! Truthfully they are 2 potatoes put together to make a monster spud!
So my love of spuds comes from my good ol’ McAlister’s days but the inspiration for this recipe was from another restaurant back home, Fudpuckers. Back in the day, Fudpuckers was a cool seafood bar but now they’ve turned into a touristy restaurant with fried, bland seafood and a gift shop bigger than the eating area. But they still serve my favorite dish from long ago, the Fud Spud which was my inspiration for Spectacular Seafood Spuds!
- 4 medium baking potatoes washed
- 4 ounces of Philadelphia Original Cooking Crème or substitute cream cheese spread
- 1 cup cheddar cheese shredded
- 1/2 cup milk
- 3 tbsp flour
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1/2 lb tail off med-large shrimp peeled
- 2 tbsp green onions chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 ounces white button mushrooms coarsely chopped
- 2 tbsp sour cream optional
- Poke holes with a fork in potatoes then place in the microwave for 15-20 minutes until they are cooked through and easily pierced with a fork or bake in a 425 degree oven for 1 hour.
- Heat a sauté pan with one tbsp olive oil.
- Add mushrooms and cook until caramelized and golden. Set aside.
- For the cheese sauce, heat a saucepan over medium low and add butter.
- Melt butter then stir in flour.
- Stir together until thickened then turn down heat to low and add milk.
- Stir constantly until well combined and thick then add cooking crème.
- Season with salt and white pepper.
- Mix in shredded cheese until creamy.
- Heat another sauté pan over medium and add 1 tbsp olive oil.
- Add shrimp, season with salt and ground pepper and cook for a minute until bright pink.
- Remove from heat.
- Place two potatoes on a serving plate.
- Cut the end off of one side of each potato.
- Split potatoes open and press cut sides together to form one large spud!
- Fluff insides with a fork, pulling potato away from the skin.
- Top with half of the mushrooms, shrimp, and then spread on the cream sauce
- Add a sprinkle of green onions and serve with a side of sour cream.
- Repeat with other spud.
- Serve hot and dig in!
Our star ingredients for the Philadelphia Cream Cheese Contest.
The makings of a Spectacular Seafood Spud!
Beautiful Florida Pink Shrimp
Coarsely chopped white button mushrooms.
Saute the mushrooms in 1 tbsp olive oil.
The ingredients for the creamy cheese sauce.
Make a roux with butter and flour then add
the Cooking Creme and shredded Triple Cheedar Cheese.
Saute the peeled shrimp in olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
There’s nothing better than fresh, local shrimp!
Our creamy cheese sauce has melted down and thickened!
How to make a “McAlister’s Spud”:
1. Cut off the end of one side of each potato.
2. Split potatoes open and press cut ends together.
3. Fluff with a fork- pulling the potato flesh from the skin
and making the potato look like one giant spud!
Add mushrooms and shrimp to the potato.
Spread on creamy cheese sauce.
Top with green onions and a side of sour cream.