Friday, May 29, 2009

Hash Brown Skillet

Eggs are my specialty and one of my favorite things to make. I love coming up with ideas for new brunches, and I have perfected my eggs in all forms. My best friend Jenn always says I make the best scrambled eggs. This breakfast here is one of my favorites. It was inspired by the skillet, my favorite breakfast at a local breakfast restaurant. A skillet is hash browns, topped with eggs, and possibly cheese or vegetables.

My skillet today is the basics. I made my homemade hash browns, jazzed up with fresh chopped rosemary, bacon, and tomatoes, and topped with two fried eggs. It's great to add cheese too, although I didn't.
So I start with the potatoes. I find hash browns work best if you partially cook the potatoes before, otherwise when you try to fry them, if you haven't sliced or chopped them thinly enough,
they'll burn on the outside before cooking through. I use 2 red bliss or Yukon Gold potatoes, and I just steam them in the Reynolds steam bags for 3 minutes in the microwave. I let them cool for a minute or so, then I peel the skins off (very easy to do when they are hot, but don't burn yourself!) and then chop them up.

I then heat up a skillet and toss in about some red pepper flakes, 2 tbsp of butter and 2 tbsp of oil. You can use more or less, depending on taste and diet preferences. Also, the type of pan you use is critical for crispiness. If you prefer your hash browns softer, use a non-stick skillet. This kind of steams them, as the non-stick coating acts as a barrier to creating a real crust. If you like them crunchier, cast iron is the way to go.

Let the butter foam up a bit and toss them in (this is also where you could toss in other vegetables, like onions or peppers).

Leave the potatoes alone for about five minutes, then give the pan a good shake to crisp up the other sides. Add more oil/butter if needed, and season with salt and peper to taste, as well as any other herbs you like. Here I used fresh rosemary, since I had some extra hanging around.

I made some bacon as well. I could have thrown that in with the potatoes, but for calories' sake I put a wire rack on top of a baking sheet and cooked them in the oven, so the excess fat and grease could be thrown away, instead of absorbed into my potatoes (not that that's a bad thing!)

This will take about 10-15 minutes, but they are very forgiving. When they are done, just cover the pan. The residual heat will keep them warm.

While they cook, get your eggs ready. I like my eggs sunny side up, but I cook them in a pan with the cover on. That way, the top of the egg kind of steams to get cooked, but the yolk remains runny.

Here's what it will look like when finished. I chopped a tomato and added it in at the very end, just for a kind of fresh taste to break up the buttery starchiness.
Here's the finished dish! I mixed up the potato and bacon, then topped with my eggs and a little sprig of rosemary for a garnish. The runny yolk gets absorbed by the potatoes and it is soo delicious.

Here's a close up.
MMMM. So good.

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