Thursday, January 13, 2011

Hash Browns

I LOVE HASHBROWNS SO MUCH. We made them earlier this week but they were a touch too soggy, so today I tried salting the grated potatoes to draw out the moisture, and it worked gorgeously :)

Make a big batch and freeze the leftovers (individually wrapped in foil) for later! Just re-fry them or heat in the toaster oven at 250F for 8-10 minutes or some completely different combination of heat and time, depending on your oven :)

FYI, these are kinda messy to make 'cause shredded potato gets EVERYWHERE and I use my hands for everything, pretty much, but they are actually really easy (i.e. huge margin for error :D). Also, as potato juice oxidizes, it turns a curious shade of reddish-maroon, and then BLACK. Do not fear, it's just starch. It will wash off with plain water.

Method:
1. Wash your potatoes and cut out any sprouted eyes. Leave the skin on for nutrients!
2. Coarsely grate them. Chop up the bit at the end that you can't grate 'cause it's too small.
3. Put the grated potatoes in a big bowl and sprinkle with some salt. I didn't measure and neither should you.
4. Squish the salt into the potatoes and let them sit for a while.
5. Meanwhile, chop up as much onion as you want. Chop them very very very finely. You can also start heating up the frying pan at this point. Medium-high will do, and don't forget the oil!!! (Just like a teaspoon or two per hash brown will suffice.)
6. Spread out a large dish-drying towel on the counter. Take handfuls of shredded potato, squeeze the water out of them, and put them on the towel in an even layer.
7. Wrap up the potatoes, taking care to tuck in the ends of the towel so you don't lose any, and wring out the towel over the sink. Really get into it -- you want to get rid of as much water as possible.
8. Put the towel back on the counter and unravel it. Mix the onions in with the potatoes using your hands.
9. Take a handful of hash brown mix and put it on the heated pan with its heated oil. Use a spatula to tease it into a flat pancake shape, then squish it with the back of the spatula because it's fun and keeps the hash brown together (kind of).
10. After what seems like forever (3-5 minutes) when the top of the hash brown has turned kinda white-clear from its oxidized white-red state, and the bottom of the hash brown has browned nicely, flip it over and let it cook for another eon (3-5 minutes)

Serve immediately with lots of ketchup (or salt & pepper).

Happy Breakfasting!