here are some fun facts about me:
- i have a bunch of irish lineage (though the nice lady at the scandinavian imports store nearby swore that i have a swedish nose…).
- i live in maine (9th largest producer of potatoes in the US).
- i don’t like eating potatoes in most forms.
“…one of these things is not like the other?” not that not liking potatoes was ever going to be the deal breaker on whether or not i am a mainer…
(spoiler alert: i’m not a mainer, sadly. i was born out of state and to be a mainer, the relaxed definition requires one to have been born in the state. more stringent definitions require 3 generations to have been born in maine before one is considered a mainer. as the saying here goes, “just because a cat had kittens in the oven doesn’t make ‘em biscuits.” (if you’re wondering if this whole aside was just an excuse to include this fabulous quote, please be assured the answer is absolutely yes.))
anyway, where were we? right. me not really liking potatoes. at the risk of making exactly zero friends, i just don’t really like mashed potatoes or french fries or baked potatoes or scalloped potatoes or… yeah. potatoes. meh.
the one notable exception is when i get really good breakfast potatoes with my omelet when i go out for breakfast. but a) those breakfast potatoes are frequently too salty and/or just not good and b) i don’t go out for breakfast that often.
therefore, when i was trying to figure out a way to use up the other half of a tiny bag of potatoes (leftover from making smoky sheet pan salmon and vegetables, aka The Only Other Recipe with Potatoes On This Site) before they bounced their way out of the cabinet, my mind went first to breakfast potatoes.
let me pause here and say that in addition to not loving the finished product with most potato recipes, i also tend to believe that they take about a fortnight to cook. i’ve never really been clear on how long a “fortnight” is, but i’m quite clear that it’s directionally correct as far as potato cooking time goes, if my limited potato cooking experience is any indication.
so imagine my pleasant surprise when i discovered a recipe in the cook’s illustrated cookbook for “diner-style home fries”. and the potatoes only had to cook for about 15 minutes! um, perfect. all i had to do was change the fat, decrease the salt, add garlic and rosemary and the recipe was perfect just as it was! (is the self-directed eye roll coming across clearly?)
but for serious, the technique was solid and for a potato-novice like me, that was the important thing. i’m a total expertpro at decreasing the salt and increasing the garlic so i hardly needed help with that part.
and here’s the ultimate stamp of approval for these breakfast potatoes: i actually went out and bought more potatoes – on purpose – so that i could make these breakfast potatoes again to photograph and share with my interweb friends. i don’t think there’s any higher compliment i could pay a potato…
ps – i’ve been going through a chocolate chip cookie in a mug phase lately. ostensibly, i’m “researching” a gluten and dairy free version, but i think maybe if i just keep making the same thing over and over again without changing any of the variables, it’s time to just come out and say, “hi, my name is kate and i don’t like potatoes (except these ones, of course) but i sure do like cookies”. consider yourself warned… the recipe is mildly addictive. or is that just me?
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 pound (16 oz. / 454 g.) yukon gold potatoes, cut into ½” (1.25 cm) dice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- heat ½ tablespoon of the oil in a large (12” / 30.5 cm) skillet over medium heat. add the onion and sauté, stirring frequently, for about 8 minutes, until the onion is browned. add the garlic and rosemary then sauté, stirring constantly, for 30 – 60 seconds, until the garlic is fragrant but not yet starting to brown. transfer the onion/garlic mixture to a small bowl and set aside.
- while the onion is sautéing, put the potatoes and salt in a large saucepan and cover them with ½” (1.25 cm) water. set the pan over high heat and bring to a boil. as soon as the water starts to boil, drain the potatoes in a colander.
- in the large (now empty) skillet, heat the remaining ½ tablespoon of oil. add the potatoes and use a spatula to gently arrange them in a single layer. then set the spatula down and let the potatoes cook undisturbed for 4 – 5 minutes, until they are golden brown on the bottom. gently turn the potatoes over and again, make sure they are in a single layer. let them cook undisturbed for another 4 – 5 minutes. repeat this process a few times until the potatoes are golden brown on a few sides and tender in the center (about 10 – 15 minutes total). add the onion mixture back in, along with the paprika, and toss gently to combine everything.
- serve immediately.
if you want to make more breakfast potatoes, make them in separate batches so that you maintain one single layer in the skillet. keep the cooked potatoes warm and crispy by spreading them out in a single layer on a baking sheet and putting them in the oven, set to 300° F. if you’re making more than two batches, keep an eye on the first batch in the oven so they don’t get too dark and dry.
leftovers keep well for up to a week in an airtight container in the fridge. microwaved leftovers will have delicious flavor but will lose the crispy texture. if you want to revive the texture, microwave the potatoes briefly to get them started warming up, then spread them out in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake them for a few minutes. but really, just toss them in a veggie and egg healthy breakfast bowl and don’t worry about the texture.
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