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Created October 9, 2011 20:10
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Weekend potato recipe
Weekend potatoes (or Brotatoes, to annoy teenage sons)
Yep, when you break it down, these are pretty simple. But they taste
good like crack late on a Sunday morning.
- a big-ass skillet (I use a 15-inch nonstick. Cast iron would be great.
Electric skillet too. Something pretty big)
- tongs, spatula
- 10 decent-sized Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 pound bacon
- extra pork products (I often use whatever deli ham is left over from
a week of school lunches, plus/minus leftover pork chops, etc. If you're
starting from scratch, get 1/2 pound of ham sliced for sandwiches)
- butter and/or olive oil
- salt & pepper
- seasonings (Do what you feel. Italian herbs are always good. Sometimes
I do marjoram and parsley. Sometimes cajun seasoning and a bit of paprika.
Mix things up.)
- optional: minced onion and garlic (This goes in everything, right?
If you want it, throw it in. I usually leave it out to keep the flavor
really earthy.)
- optional (but not really optional): eggs
1. Turn on a Bourdain episode from your DVR, or a baseball game or something.
These aren't super quick to make.
2. Stab all your potatoes a few times on each side, then put on a plate and
in the microwave for 11 minutes.
3. While the potatoes are going, put foil on a baking sheet and lay out all
your bacon strips. Turn your oven to 400 degrees, and put in the baking sheet
of bacon (yep, starting while the oven is cold).
4. Set up your skillet, and get out a cutting board and start dicing your
pork. Dice it pretty fine -- if you're using sandwich ham, stack the slices,
cut into thin strips, then quarter-turn and cut the strips into little squares.
5. When the microwave goes off, flip the potatoes over and send them in again
for another 11 minutes.
6. Keep an eye on your bacon, because the timing here depends on how quickly
your oven heats up. After 15 minutes or so, the strips should be looking
sizzly but not done. At this point, pull out the baking sheet and drain off
most of the bacon grease into your skillet. Use the tongs to flip the bacon
strips, and put back in the oven.
7. Your potatoes should be pretty close to finished with their second round
in the microwave. When they're done, pull them out -- they should be nicely
tender. Turn the skillet onto medium to medium-high heat, and start slicing
the potatoes. (If you're adding minced onion and garlic, here's their entry
point.) The potatoes will still be really hot, so again with the tongs (unless
you had the foresight to do the microwave step the night before). I cut them
in half, flip the halves flat side down, cut those lengthwise once, then cut
across to make potato slices that aren't too thick. After you cut each potato,
slide it into your skillet with the bacon grease.
8. As you're cutting potatoes, check your bacon. You want it chewy, not
crispy. When the bacon's done, pull out the baking sheet and drain any new
grease over top of your potatoes in the skillet. Set aside and finish cutting
the rest of your potatoes.
9. Once all the potatoes are in, give them a good stir to get that bacon
grease distributed. Let them cook for a few minutes, then add some more fat.
I subscribe to the "three fats, three porks" theory, so I go with a couple
tablespoons of butter first, stirring it around to melt things in. Later on
as things continue to cook, I'll drizzle with a little olive oil now and then.
10. The bacon grease will provide some saltiness, but not enough for that
many potatoes. Add some salt (kosher, of course) and some pepper (fresh
cracked, of course) and then whatever herbs or seasonings you're going
to do (you don't need a ton).
11. Now add your porks. Whatever ham, chops, etc., you've got diced up,
distribute around the potatoes and stir things in. Reserve a strip or two
of your bacon, then chop the rest up and add to the skillet. Stir, add some
olive oil, stir.
12. Put your heat on medium, and let the potatoes cook for a few minutes
without stirring. You want to develop some crispy layers against the bottom
of the pan, THEN stir, and repeat. Do this a few times while you eat your
reserved bacon and drink coffee and watch TV or whatever. Once you've got
some good crispy texture mixed in with the soft, you're pretty much done.
13. If you're going with the bonus egg technique (and why wouldn't you),
get out your eggs. Shove your potatoes around to clear out some room in
the skillet, and turn your heat down to low. Add in some oil if necessary,
and crack a couple eggs in there. Put a couple scoops of potatoes onto
a plate, and when your eggs are nice and over easy, lay them right on top.
Repeat for as many people are eating.
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