Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Crispy Home Fries

Hello, everyone!  Happy Tuesday, I hope your week has started off well!  Growing up, my supper plate always had a veggie, a protein, and a starch.  I have carried this tradition over into my adulthood, but sometimes I get tired of the usual starches, so I turn to potatoes.
I kind of consider potatoes to be the chicken of the starch world.  You can do almost anything to them, and they're always delicious.
That being said, a soggy home fry just makes me sad.   There is a trick to getting crispy home fries that aren't burnt.  Curious as to what it is?  Let's get started to find out!
Like I said, there is a little bit of a trick to get truly crispy home fries, and that is to par boil your potatoes.  It does take a little bit of extra effort, but it is so worth it.  Even better, the potatoes can be par boiled hours before you want to make the home fries!  When I make these for supper, I'll usually par boil the potatoes around 3 in the afternoon, so I can just toss them into the skillet for about 7 minutes while they get golden brown and perfectly crunchy.
Here's your grocery list for this one:
2 Gold Yukon potatoes (I like a waxy potato for this, but a baking potato will work fine, too)*
Water to boil the potatoes in
2-3 Tbs vegetable oil
Seasonings to taste

That's it!  I say seasonings to taste, because you can take these in tons of different directions, depending on what you're doing for the rest of your meal.  I usually just put salt and a dash of garlic powder on mine, but you can use steak seasoning, or Greek seasoning, or a little bit of dried dill...I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea.
So, lets get started!  This is going to go pretty quickly, because I've already handed you the big, top secret..well, secret, so to speak, but we'll check out all of the pictures, just to be sure everything is covered!
To start off with, cut your potatoes down into bite sized pieces.  I like mine to be in roughly 1/2" cubes, but it's up to you!  As you're cutting them, put them into a medium sized empty pot.  I used 2 potatoes, for 2 people to eat, and we had potatoes leftover.

Once all of your potatoes are cut up, cover them with water; I like to have at least 1 inch of water over the tops of the potatoes.  Bring these potatoes up to a boil, and let them cook for 10 minutes.  Exciting pictures, here, I know... 
After 10 minutes is up, drain them off; if you're not going to use them right away, I like to cover them with a clean kitchen towel.  If you are going to use them right away, shake them around a bit, to make sure that they are dry.  If the edges of the potatoes get roughed up while you're shaking them off, that's great!  That will turn into extra crispiness when they fry up.  Yum!  I shook mine after they cooled off, so they didn't get too roughed up, but they were still really crispy, so no worries there.  They're great either way. 

Okay, if you have a cast iron skillet, that's my pan of choice to fry up home fries in.  If you don't have a cast iron skillet, any heavy bottomed skillet will work fine.  Put 2-3 Tbs of vegetable oil into the pan, and heat it up over medium high heat for a couple of minutes, until the oil is shimmering.   

Carefully put the potatoes in, in a single layer, and let them fry for about 4 minutes before turning them over.  Keep an eye on them; if you see the edges browning too quickly, turn the heat down and give them a quick stir; you don't want them to burn.  I usually add the salt in at this point, and whatever other seasonings you want to put in, except garlic powder.
Try to keep them in a single layer, and turn them once or twice (I use a spatula, and just scoop 'em up, and flip 'em over.  I'm not in there making sure each and every one flips over every 5 minutes or so.  No one has time for that...), until they are evenly browned all over. 
Yum!  This is the golden brown goodness I was looking for!  Oh!  If you want to put some garlic powder in these, I would wait until the last minute to do so; garlic powder burns very easily.  For this evenings meal, I made up my lemon and garlic pork tenderloin.