Homemade Hashbrown Potatoes…Take Two


Well, they look innocent enough don’t they?

This is my second attempt to prepare Waffle House worthy homemade hash brown potatoes.  For my first test last Sunday, I used  my mandolin to grate the potatoes, I soaked and rinsed them before frying in my cast iron skillet.  I ended up with a tiny little delicious French fries.  Not the end result I was after.

For my second attempt, I used the large setting on my box grater to shred the peeled potatoes.  After grating I soaked the potatoes in water for about 15 minutes, drained them, and since I don’t have a potato ricer, used my salad spinner to remove the moisture from the potatoes. It actually worked like a charm. I had a beautiful pile of what appeared to be a fully dry mound of fluffy raw potatoes shreds that were to be fried into excellence. I patted them even dryer between paper towels while the oil in my cast iron was heating.

When ready I sprinkled the shredded potatoes in the hot oil, salt and peppered and cooked until browned.   Turning once, cooked on the other side until golden.  I removed the potatoes to paper towels.

For the next five minutes I patted, probed and pressed trying to remove the incredible amount of grease from the potatoes. For some reason they acted as a sponge for the oil.  They were still very greasy on the plate and on the palate. I was not pleased at all.

I used red potatoes as opposed to Russet because Safeway didn’t have any Russet. What’s up with that? I also used olive oil, which is what I used for the first try. Any suggestions? Do I need to go buy some Crisco?

SO, for now, it’s back to the drawing board.

The quiche? Delicious! Just a basic crustless quiche recipe using Monterey Jack, goat cheese and roasted Poblano peppers, then topped with some green chili I had in the freezer. Really good.

Homemade Hash Brown Potatoes and Southwestern Crustless Quiche … It’s What’s for Breakfast.






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  1. says

    For the second time with your hash brown experiments, I’m saying these LOOK wonderful, Lea Ann. But you’re the one who knows exactly what you’re looking for, so I anxiously await the perfect recipe! Must admit I wouldn’t use olive oil. Crisco may be the answer, although I know it’s not as good for us.

  2. Debbye says

    I’m a breakfast chef for an inn in Colorado and cook hashbrowns every morning. How much oil are you using? You are probably using too much and it takes experimenting to use just the right amount for however much you are cooking. I use a blended salad oil along with some bacon grease for flavor. You want enough oil that the hashbrowns won’t stick, and they will absorb it and you won’t have excess left over. I cover the entire bottom of the commercial skillet with oil and when it’s hot enough, I cover the entire bottom with the hashbrowns. When one side is done, I flip it and there is just enough oil in the potatoes to help them cook on the other side. When they are done, all the oil has been absorbed and there isn’t any left over, and the potatoes are crisp and not the least bit greasy.

  3. says

    Well, they certain look pretty with the quiche Lea Ann. As far as the grease goes, well, looks like you’ve mastered hash browns that they serve in greasy spoons, oui? Big smiles from here. I watched our favorite breakfast chef make hash browns the other day in a diner and she does it on a griddle (probably well lubricated with grease) and flips with a big spatula. Keep trying or do what I would probably do. Eat them at the Waffle House, enjoy it, and don’t sweat the small stuff.

  4. says

    Maybe your oil isn’t quite hot enough when you add your potatoes. I am hash brown challenged too so I am no expert but try kicking up your heat and see if that helps. They sure look beautiful LeaAnn! You photo is lovely.

  5. says

    And the quest continues . . . I love a good series. I understand the issue with grease. I’m still learning about that, too. Maybe use canola for the hotter temp and just coat the bottom of the pan? What a clever idea to use the salad spinner!
    And at least they photographed well. :) I’m noticing in your gorgeous photo another piece of Frankoma – very cute. I looked up that pottery and the history. Fun stuff.
    I’m anxious to hear the next experiment!

    • Lea Ann says

      I thought my idea of using the salad spinner was “devilishly” clever. Actually it worked really really good. And yes, they photographed well. You can’t even see that oozing oil. :) There’s a truck stop at Limon that sells that pottery. Every time my mom drove to Denver for a visit she’d stop and pick up a piece. And it’s not all that cheap. My cousin actually drove to the factory for a visit once. I forget where it’s at. Yes, there will be a “take three”.

  6. says

    hmm … not a hashbrown expert here … but wondering, why soak the taters first? i think i remember hashbrowns on ATK, and they (may or may not) have said that they should be as dry as possible. i’ll stay tuned for Round 3!

    • Lea Ann says

      Obviously I’m not a hash brown expert either. The only reason I’ve soaked is from things I’ve read. I do think I’m close. Stay tuned. :)

    • Lea Ann says

      You bet there will be a “take three”. And as I replied to Joanne … if it’s a failure, then it’s back to the freezer section. :)

  7. says

    I’ve never successfully made restaurant-style hash browns at home and they’re just one of those things that I’ve resigned myself to never really getting right. I think it’s probably because I refuse to use as much oil as necessary. 😛 I think these look great though! I’d be super happy to eat a huge pile of them!

    • Lea Ann says

      Like I said in the first sentence “they look innocent enough”. They were greasy. I’m actually going to do a “take three” with less oil. After that I’m giving in to the freezer section. :)

  8. says

    I admire your determination, Lea Ann. I don’t make hashbrowns from scratch anymore and just buy a bag of shredded spuds instead and add onion and peppers. My grandkids love this. Occasionally I will boil a few Russets, cube them and fry them in a little oil with a spoonful of bacon grease added. Crispy and delicious!

    • Lea Ann says

      Well Cathy, those hashbrowns from the freezer section are darn good! That’s exactly why I’ve not mastered home made at home.

  9. says

    If it’s greasy, it’s likely not the amount of oil used but the temperature. When oil is at the proper temp (350f ish) the pressure of oil trying to get into the potatoes is balanced by the pressure of steam pressing out of the cooking food. (Don’t look at me like I’m Alton Brown…I just learned that this week on a frying lesson at Rouxbe Online Cooking School so it was fresh in my memory, ha ha.)

    • Lea Ann says

      Couldn’t agree more Chris. I’m buying some Crisco and turning up that heat for tomorrow’s test. I really should join Rouxbe.

  10. says

    I made hash browns using a tip from Emeril some time ago. Seems to me that using Russets is a must because they’re high starch. I grated the potatoes, put them in a dish towel and literally wrung all the moisture from them. Then when they are very dry, fried them in (not too much) oil, flipping when one side was brown. They were perfect.

    • Lea Ann says

      Can you believe Safeway didn’t have any Russet potatoes for my 2nd test? I think I’ve heard that too, however. I will have russet’s for tomorrow’s try.

  11. says

    I like this recipe testing post. The realities of cooking and mastering a dish. Oh, girl, it’s been oh so many years since I tried to make hash browns. I lived in Austin at the time and it was humid and I ended up with something that was indescernable. My friend thought it was a good vegetarian sausage.

    • Lea Ann says

      LOL Andrea. A good vegetarian sausage??? I’m feeling pretty darn confident about tomorrow “take 3”. We’ll see.

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