one man's ceiling
Sunday, February 25, 2007
  lazy hash browns
late saturday night i realized i didn't have the makings of a nice sunday breakfast. nothing. so i went to the only market opened after 11 pm and attempted to buy eggs, sausages and hash browns. yes, i could make the hash browns myself from potatoes, but i was being a lazy slug and wanted a shortcut.

because i'm not a morning person (hello! i went to art school! we have diplomas that state quite clearly we do not have to fully functional before noon on any given day) the thought of getting up before everyone to prepare potatoes just didn't sit well with me.

okay, okay, it really is because i'm lazy.

but did this store have any regular old hash brown potatoes in the freezer section? no. did they have home fries or anything of the sort? no. apparently the only kind of breakfast potato people want from their supermarkets these days are those skillet meals with potatoes, meat and other things all mixed in.

just add your own eggs! and we can charge you $5 for a package that includes less than half of a package of hash browns! and charge double for the privilege! aren't you happy for this wonderful convenience we are providing you!


honestly, are americans the dumbest consumers on the planet, or are we just treated that way?

anyway, lazy but undaunted, i decided to make hash browns out of the next best things: tater tots. the recipe follows, but i don't recommend it.

lazy hash browns (not recommended) in a skillet on medium heat saute the onions until soft
add the tater tots and let them sit a bit
add the spices, and flip to mix
let them sit until the start to brown and then flip them and cook another five minutes or so
once they are cooked through (about 15 minutes total) set the heat to low and let them sit until you're ready to serve.

problems
the problem is that the tater tot is meant to be eaten crispy on the outside, soft and potato-y on the inside. that gets messed up once you chop up the tots. once they cook they begin to crumble and then you have a sort of potato gravel that, while good, tends to get a little heavy with oil and become less distinct as potato.

no, i say if you're going to cheat on hash browns use the tater tots as-are, baked to perfection in the oven per instructions on the package. also, if you're going with tater tots for breakfast just toss a few in a tortilla with scrambled eggs and some chopped up sausage. a breakfast burrito is a wonderful thing. salsa is good with it, or just plain hot sauce, but ketchup works for me as well (you have to be a ketchup-with-eggs person, i realize). and don't forget cheese! yum!

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