Follow the initial steps; piercing is good, to allow moisture to escape, but just do it right before they go in the oven. No need to measure olive oil - just pour some in one hand, or a folded paper towel, and rub each potato. You do not want them dripping in oil.
Put rock salt on a flat pan - place your pierced potatoes on top of the rock salt. I prefer lining the pan with tin foil, because after baking, it's very easy to pick the foil up and put the rock salt in a container to use the next time!
Rock salt helps draw moisture out of the potato. Use your rock salt for several batches, until it has become very dark. If you really think you need extra salt, sprinkle a tiny bit over the top of each one; most people don't need the extra salt, especially if using cheese, bacon, etc., all of which have salt in them! Instead of a 300f oven, I use a hotter temp. Forget the time schedule, as that varies with the size of potato - so with LARGE baking potatoes, for example, they may warm your house up with yummy smells, at 400f, for 1 1/2 hours! Love that! To make sure they are done, use a hot pad to gently massage your largest potato. The massaging also helps release remaining moisture from the potato. If it is soft all around, it's done! Rub off any remaining rock salt from the bottom - you do not want to eat it!! - and save for next time.
Yes, as some commenters have said, if you are really in a hurry, potatoes can be microwaved a few minutes prior to baking. But I recommend saving
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Follow the initial steps; piercing is good, to allow moisture to escape, but just do it right...