Abbi was away at Brownie camp a week or so ago. On such occasions, Jamie leaps into “only child” mode, requesting all his favourite meals. One of these requests was hash browns for breakfast. These are ridiculously moreish: Definitely make more than you think you will need. I couldn’t help but make these into heart shapes. Obviously this step is entirely optional.
Ingredients (Per person):
1 large potato per person. (Not nearly enough for my greedy family).
Salt and pepper
teaspoon of oil
In my experience, the key to perfect hash browns every time, is:
1) Get all the moisture out of the potato before you fry; &
2) These take time. Don’t rush it. They need 15 minutes on each side at least in order to crisp up. Its impossible to speed this process up.
Peel the potato, and grate using the large holes on your grater. This will look like an enormous amount, but believe me – you can’t have too many hashbrowns. Squeeze out / drain away as much of the liquid as possible. To get the potatoes crispy, they need to be as dry as possible. Use a paper towel or two to soak up the final moisture. Season the potatoes slightly at this stage. You can add more seasoning when they are cooked.
To make the heart shapes – place a teaspoon of olive oil in to a non stick pan, and heat until the oil is slightly sizzling. Place a large cutter (heart or other shaped) on the pan, and place the shredded hash brown in the cutter. Don’t leave the cutter in the pan, as the hash browns will stick to it (and it will get very hot). You don’t want to crowd the pan too much, but I can manage two in this pan – and three in a slightly larger one. If you don’t want to do ‘shapes’ use same method to make a large hash brown. Turn the heat down slightly, and then leave the hash browns for 15 minutes. Don’t be tempted to fiddle with them – they need time to consolidate into the shape. If you try and move them too quickly, the shape is likely to disintegrate. After 15 minutes, they should be deliciously crispy on the outside, and easily flippable. Give them a further 15 minutes on the other side. If they have soaked up all of the oil, add a few more drops to the hot pan. Season to taste, and enjoy. We had these with crispy parma ham. Delicious.
It goes without saying – be careful using plastic cookie cutters in the hot pan. Make sure you use metal ones. I like the idea of using alphabet shapes to for my childrens initials or even their name.