if you’re like me when you want to try a new recipe you just go for it. sometimes this makes for a delicious meal. other times it is a massive failure.
the first time i tried to make hash browns it was the massive failure type attempt. i figured all you have to do is grate some potatoes and throw them in a skillet with oil. close, but not close at all.
a quick google search showed me the key mistake i made, squeezing out the moisture. you can’t have crispy potatoes if they keep oozing their potato juice out into the pan. its why country potatoes don’t taste like hash browns, duh.
hopefully this very easy recipe for a classic breakfast side dish will prevent you from making my disastrous mistake.
2 good sized russet potatoes, scrubbed
2 or 3 tablespoons oil
salt and pepper, to taste
if you like potato peel, go ahead and start grating your potato. these babies also work fully peeled, or my preference, half peeled.
when you have a giant bowl of potato shreds take a handfull of potato and squeeze out as much moisture as you can. if you have cheesecloth or paper towels lying around it helps to place the potato inside this so that the shreds don’t squeeze out of your fingers. place the squeezed potatoes on a plate or in another bowl.
when you have finished with the batch, heat your skillet on medium and coat it well with oil. if you have oil with a high smoking point, you can turn the skillet up a little more.
when the oil is hot, place a good sized handful of shredded potatoes in a pile* into the skillet. as they fry, constantly press down on the potatoes, flattening the pile and pushing out the moisture. after three or four minutes, flip the hashbrown and add more oil to the skillet to coat the other side of the hash brown patty. cook another three or or four minutes, pressing down on the patty, and you are done!
if your hash brown’s aren’t getting that beautiful golden color, you aren’t using enough oil. this isn’t exactly a healthy breakfast dish so don’t skimp!
*in my opinion, the hash brown patty method works much better than covering the skillet in potatoes. it makes it much easier to flip and to make sure that there is enough oil around the potatoes to brown them nicely.