One Potato, Two Potatoes, Three Potatoes…More!

One Potato, Two Potatoes, Three Potatoes…More!

The other day, I was rummaging around in my fridge and discovered a treasure trove of leftover potatoes! Multitask those spuds with two different recipes sure to hit the spot. Click to skip to the recipe

I love potatoes. 

I think this devotion stems from early breakfasts shared with my Dad. 

To quell my then rebellious teenage persona, Dad would spend quality time with me on the weekends.

He traveled for his business during the week but was always home on the weekends. Saturday morning was our time.

We woke early (thus my lifelong habit) and drove to his office where he would catch up on paperwork and I would help him run job cost numbers.

First things first, we stopped for breakfast on the way. Many times, it was just to gather a box of donuts to share with the others in the office. 

But SOMETIMES we would splurge and stop at the local Denny’s restaurant. 

We would sit, sip really good coffee and Dad would order either a Denny’s Grand Slam or Denny’s Skillet breakfast. The grand slam loaded pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, toast, and fried potatoes onto one large plate. The skillet was just that, a cast-iron skillet loaded with potato and meat hash and topped with a couple of eggs – your way. 

It’s been almost 20 years since my Dad went to heaven and my fondest memories still include the joy on his face as he tore into that meal.

The other day, when I was rummaging around in my fridge, I was delighted to find a treasure trove of leftover potatoes! I had leftover twice-baked from last Sunday’s potluck supper and a baked potato because hubby and I decided to split one instead of consuming a whole.

And, I even had a mound of left-over smashed parmesan potatoes from Monday night’s meatloaf dinner. Eureka!

It’s one of the good cook’s miracles that leftover potatoes will last a long time in the fridge, giving you an opportunity for a second dish with just a little effort. 

So, with a nod to my Dad, and a love of leftovers, I have two dishes for you this week.

The first is a breakfast skillet made from the baked potato and enhanced with beef, bacon, peppers and onions and topped with a glazed egg.

This is a hearty breakfast that is super served after an early morning hike or when combining breakfast and lunch into one leisurely brunch meal.

The second dish was FUN. I used the inside of the twice-baked potato with the mound of mashed and made a potato croquette that was perfectly (and simply) fried crisp on the outside with a soft, almost gooey center.

Yumm oh yumm!

 

Breakfast Skillet With Glazed Eggs

Breakfast Skillet with Glazed Eggs

Ingredients

A perfect use for leftover potatoes, feel free to add absolutely anything into your hash.

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 sliced bacon, diced

4 ounces beef (I used tenderloin, but you can substitute with ham, corned beef, or chicken, it’s your choice), about 1 cup

1 large baked potato, cooked and cut into ½-inch cubes, about 1 cup

1 green bell pepper, seeded and cut into ½-inch cubes, about 1 cup

1 white onion, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes, about 1 cup

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon coarse black pepper

2 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated, about ½ cup

2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

For eggs:

1 tablespoon butter

4 large eggs

Servings:

Time:

2

30-Minute Cuisine

glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce

Drizzle the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and beef. Cook until the bacon begins to crisp. Remove the bacon and beef from the skillet. Add the potato, pepper, and onions to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook until the onions and peppers are soft, and the potato begins to brown, about 15 to 20 minutes. Add the bacon and beef back onto the skillet and toss. Scatter the cheese on top of the hash. Cover the skillet and cook to melt the cheese. Toss the fresh dill over the top.

Place the butter into a separate skillet (with lid) over medium heat. When the butter is melted, crack the eggs into the pan. Fill an empty eggshell half with water and pour this into the pan. The water will bubble up. Cover the pan with a lid. Lower the heat to medium-low. Coo the eggs until the yolks are just set, about 3 to 4 minutes.

Scoop out the hash onto a plate. Top the hash with eggs. Garnish with dill sprigs.

Mashed Potato Croquettes

Ingredients

Starting out with seasoned left-over mashed potatoes makes this an easy recipe to prepare. However, if you like to start from scratch, just bake a couple of potatoes and scoop out the flesh. You can season with salt and pepper and even add some sour cream or cheddar cheese. It’s all good!

4 cups left over mashed potatoes

1 large egg yolk, plus 1 whole egg

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons milk

2 to 3 green onions, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon coarse black pepper

2 cups seasoned breadcrumbs

Canola (or vegetable) oil for frying

Yield:

Time:

1 Dozen 3-inch croquettes

30-Minute Cuisine

glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce
glazed lemon cake with berry sauce

Place the mashed potatoes into a bowl. Stir in the egg yolk (reserve the white part), and green onions. Place the bowl into the fridge for a couple of minutes while you assemble the breading station.

Place the whole egg and the egg white into a shallow bowl. Beat with 1 to 2 tablespoons of water until combined. Place the seasoned breadcrumbs into another shallow bowl. 

Remove the potatoes from the fridge. Use an ice cream scoop to form round potato balls that you dip into the egg wash and then the breadcrumbs. Transfer each ball to a parchment lined sheet pan or platter. When all the croquettes are formed, place them back into the fridge for 15 minutes. 

Heat oil in a fryer or deep pot to 375°. Fry the croquettes in the oil a couple at a time until deeply golden. Transfer to a paper-towel lined platter. When all of the croquettes are fried garnish with a touch of sea salt and fresh herbs.

Make Ahead Tip:

You can make these ahead of time and store in an airtight container in the fridge. Bring them to room temperature before you fry.

Snack Attack!

Snack Attack!

This Holiday Season Wrap Your Snacks with Bacon Bows

Then again, why limit a snack like this to the holidays?

HOLY APPY, Batman! This one is for the record (cook) book. I saw Food Network star, Ree Drummond prepare bacon appetizers on one of her Christmas specials and could not resist giving them a try. It is a simple idea of wrapping country club crackers with a thinly sliced piece of bacon and then oven baking the crackers at a low temperature of 250 degrees for 2 hours. Just layer the cracker with either Parmesan cheese or brown sugar. The cracker absorbs all of the rich bacon fat and the cheese or sugar melts right into the middle. This is such a great Christmas appy, which got me thinking, “Why do we have to wait until Christmas to eat things wrapped in bacon? This should be a year-round snack starter!”

That’s what I thought when I realized you can freeze these bacon crackers and then warm them back up any time you need a quick snack. You could also ditch the crackers altogether and embrace the gorgeous deliciousness of bacon in a more natural state. Hello, Chipotle Spiced Candied Bacon! You could also do what I did below in 2 simple steps.

Spicy-Cheesy Bacon on Warm Pita Bread

  • Step 1: Load pita chips with finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • Step 2: Sprinkled on a couple of diced pickled jalapenos and wrap the pita chip in bacon, baking the “bacon bites” on a rack in a baking pan at 250° for two hours.

The result was a cheesy, rich, and salty pita cracker that melted in my mouth and then surprised me with a pop of heat.

Call to Action for All Bacon Lovers!

Let’s start a bacon-wrapped cracker movement. We could change the world! Let’s see what combinations we come up with, and vote on which one is the most original! You post your combo and I will give it a try.

Meanwhile, we will have plenty of bacony treats hidden in the freezer to quell our next snack attack! Oh, and heads up: my blog is going to be doing a whole series of SNACK ATTACKS in anticipation of my lucky #7 book, out in 2015. I think I may have given away the book’s content in this post. Oops! Oh well….commence your snacking – it is going to help me so much!!

Chick’s Night In

Chick’s Night In

Sometimes I find myself home alone.  When this happens I mostly occupy myself by doing purposeful projects like cleaning out the closet, rearranging the kitchen drawers, and stalking my children on Facebook. You know — the boring stuff. The one thing I absolutely cannot bring myself to do is eat cold cereal for dinner. I have friends that do this. Rather than nuke something or throw something into a pan they eat cold cereal from a bowl. I tried this once and then made my way directly to the stove and cooked a full meal. I guess I’m just addicted to good food.

Alone last night, I defrosted some chicken thighs and braised them with some chopped veggies, wine, beef broth and added some frozen okra and fresh thyme. Yes… it was yummy; and while the chicken cooked I rearranged my knife drawer, it’s in stellar condition.

I have a recipe in Sunday Best Dishes  for “Braised Chicken Thighs with Sweet Peas and Bacon” on which this dish is based. Here is my home alone adaptation.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 large (5 to 6-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken thighs or 6 smaller thighs
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • ½ teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • 1 large white onion, peeled and diced, about 1 cup
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped, about ½ cup
  • 2 large carrots, diced, about ½ cup
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen okra, thawed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme

Heat the olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Cook the chicken in the pan until browned on one side, about 5 minutes. Turn and brown on the remaining side, about 5 minutes more. Transfer the chicken to a platter. Carefully pour out the fat from the pan, reserving about 2 tablespoons. Place the onion, celery and carrots in the skillet. Cook until soft, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the wine, beef broth and tomato paste. Return the chicken to the pan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 to 25 minutes. Stir in the okra and thyme and cook for 3 to 5 minutes more. Serve with rice or pasta or just on its own – single.

What is your favorite chick’s night in dish?