How Do You Spell G-U-T-B-O-M-B? 'Classic' Stuffed Potato at La Papa in Astoria

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The so-called Classic at La Papa is stuffed with an ungainly combination of...stuff!

Located on Astoria's 30th Avenue, La Papa is a fast food outlet specializing in baked potatoes--seen from an unusual Turkish perspective.

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Who knew that Turks had their own stuffed-potato tradition? While Americans fill their baked spuds with combinations of butter, sour cream, chives, and perhaps bacon, the Turks throw in the kitchen sink.

The La Papa (which can mean "daddy," "pope," or "potato") Classic features a huge baked tuber slit and stuffed with corn kernels, green olives, pickles, sliced franks, and Russian salad, which is basically a mayo potato salad with mixed veggies thrown in. The potato on potato action this stuffing represents is strange but delectable, and the other ingredients provide crunch and salinity.

As my friends and I took turns taking bites from this potato ($6), we eventually agreed it tasted pretty damn good. We had fallen under its inexplicable spell. 25-13 30th Avenue, Astoria, Queens, 718-777-7879

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To reach the order counter at La Papa, you must first pass this slouching potato sentry.

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