Potato Nests

Potato NestsI am not much of a fan of hash browns. For whatever reason restaurants do not like to cook hash browns fully to make them crispy and delicious.

Instead I often receive a gluey grey pile of potatoes that aren’t seasoned and are always undercooked.  It’s gross. Recently out to breakfast with a friend at a very popular place here in town, her order came with a side of hash browns.  On her plate arrived exactly what I just described.  Oh they tried to make it pretty by putting it in a round pile similiar to how some places plate rice.

Yeah, it was still a gluey undercooked pile of potatoes.  She didn’t eat it.  I couldn’t blame her.

Why do restaurants insist on serving this mess?  Give me home fries or fried potatoes any day over hash browns.

But there has to be something that can be done with hash browns.  Maybe the restaurants never get it right but that doesn’t mean we have to eat the same thing at home, right?

So my stance has been changed.  If I’m in charge of the hash browns then I’ll eat them.

I wanted to make hash browns fun and also wanted to make a batch that could be frozen or reheated through out the week.  That’s when I came up with making potato nests.  Oh I have no delusions that I’ve created something new.  I’m sure there are other recipes out there but this is my version.  Crispy potatoes with lots of garlic!

Andrea’s Potato Nests

  • 1 1/2 Pounds of Russet Potatoes, peeled, shredded, and drained** (about 3 medium potatoes)
  • 1 egg + 1tsp water, scrambled
  • 1/2tsp salt
  • 1/2tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2tsp onion powder
  • Fat for greasing the pan (Lard, butter, or olive oil)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

**Make sure that you remove as much water from the potatoes as possible.  It easiest to lay the shredded potatoes on a dish towel and squeeze out as much of the water out as possible.

Grease a muffin pan with your choice of fat.  In a large mixing bowl combine the potatoes and the seasonings, gently mix.  Then add the egg mixture and mix until the potatoes are completely covered.  Scoop up a small handful and start to line the muffin tin.  You will have to play around a bit with the amount so that you have enough for each section.  Line it much like you would line a pie pan with pie dough.

This will make enough for 12 nests.

Place muffin tin in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the potatoes are crispy and the nests are holding their shape.  Remove from oven and cool for about 3 minutes before trying to remove the nests from the pan.  Remove them gently so the bottoms don’t stick.  Serve immediately or allow to cool to room temperature before storing.

Potato nests with scrambled eggsI used a lot of seasoning on these and they are potent.  If you feel that might be too much for you, reduce the garlic and onion powder to 1/4 tsp each.

I filled the nests with scrambled eggs just to give you and idea of shape and size.  But they can be filled with whatever you like!  You could even make a frittata filling and pour it in the nests and bake them.  It will take longer but would make a great dish for brunch.

Potato nests and scrambled eggs

Also the nests don’t just have to be for breakfast.  Fill it with sausage bites and sauerkraut for dinner.  Or lunch!  You could even make this bigger by lining a pie pan with the potato mixture and then adding a frittata filling and baking.  Really, this is a blank slate that is open to possibilities.

I kept these in the fridge and reheated them in my toaster oven.  They could be reheated in the oven as well, at 350 for a few minutes.  They kept all week just fine.

Now go do something fun with potatoes!

Have fun guys, and remember, always play with your food! Enjoy!

 

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