Hash browns are a staple of breakfast buffets, breakfasts on the go and as an accompaniment to bacon. They’re also notoriously difficult to make properly. So, let’s start with How to Make Perfect Crispy Hash Browns?
In this post, we’ll show you how to make crispy and perfect hash browns with very little fuss. All you need is a few minutes of prep time.
Hash Browns History
There are two theories as to the origins of the humble hash brown. One is that they were brought to the US by German immigrants in Pennsylvania. The second theory claims that they originated in New York’s Jewish delicatessens around 1908. Whatever their origins, browns became immensely popular with Americans during World War II when food was rationed, due in part to their affordability and also because they were quick and easy to make.
Making Perfect Hash Browns
Crispy and browned on the outside, and soft innards on the inside. Well, that’s what we want when we make Crispy browns. With some simple tricks, you can get them just like they’re in a restaurant – even at home. We recommend using a cast iron skillet for this recipe because it keeps them crispy.
1) Use a Spray Oil or Butter Spray to grease your cast iron skillet before adding oil or butter (and to keep it from sticking on the pan).
2) Heat the pan and grease it until the pan sizzles when water is dripped on it – this will ensure that the browns are cooked evenly.
3) Let the pan sit until it cools down a bit before adding oil or butter. This will allow any burnt bits to cook off and make your browns taste more delicious.
4) Add two tablespoons of oil or butter to the pan and let it cook until it starts to shimmer.
5) This will take about 1 minute. Don’t wait too long though, or your browns will get soggy on the inside and turn grey.
6) Add one cup of browns to the pan at a time – do not crowd them. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
7) Remove browns from the pan and place on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil.
8) Repeat for all the ingredients – this will make your hash browns extra crispy.
What Kind of Potatoes Are Best For Homemade Hashbrowns?
You can use any type of potato for homemade browns, but our favourite is Yukon Gold. The skin of these potatoes are thin and won’t need to be removed, and their flesh is creamy and soft enough to grate easily on a box grater.
How To Cook Homemade Crispy Hash Browns in the Oven?
If you don’t have a cast iron pan, we recommend cooking your homemade browns in the oven. Here’s how: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
Place one large chopped potato (peeled) in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes, or until tender but not falling apart completely. Drain the potatoes.
Place the boiled potatoes on the prepared baking sheet, spread out evenly and spray with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste, if desired. Turn over once after about 10 minutes of cooking to ensure even crisping. You will want to cook the hash browns until they are golden brown and crispy on both sides. Remove from the oven and place aside on a paper towel to soak up any excess oil.
If you want to make your hash browns extra crispy, lay the sheet pan using a cooling rack to allow air flow underneath and ensure even crisping (see picture below).
How To Store Homemade Browns?
Homemade hash browns can be stored in an airtight container for 3-5 days. You can reheat them by baking or pan-frying in a cast iron skillet.
What goes well with homemade browns?
Homemade Crispy Browns are the perfect side to any breakfast meal, but they also taste great with sandwich ingredients. We love making our Homemade Crispy Bacon and adding it to homemade hash browns for a breakfast sandwich, or even using a few slices of crispy avocado!
Tips for the Crispiest Hash Browns –
Here are some tips on how to make your browns extra crispy:
Crispy Hash Browns: Combine your pan and oil/butter in one bowl. Then add potatoes and cook in the order given. We recommend adding the oil/butter mixture last, and then the potatoes, to ensure even cooking. Don’t pack them! You don’t want soggy hash browns. Do not overcrowd the pan or your potatoes will steam instead of crisp.
Hard to Cook Hash Browns: You might have heard about the various “hard” potato varieties that are perfect for hash browns. They range from Red Bliss, Russet, Yukon Gold and Maris Piper potatoes. These types of potatoes are more tender and cook more evenly compared to other varieties of potatoes.
When you’re doing this method, we recommend using a mix of similar types – e.g. Red Bliss, Yukon Gold and Maris Piper. The skins will have to be peeled off and the flesh will be easily sliced.
With such a big variety of potatoes out there, it can be hard to find the right one for your hash browns, that’s why we recommend making some comparisons between them or looking for them online. We like Russet potatoes best for this recipe because their skins are thinner, which makes them easier to grate and crisp up.
How to Make Perfect Crispy Hash Browns
Perfect Crispy Browns Recipe
For Hash Browns: 2 cups of potatoes (store-bought or home-cut) 1 tablespoon of canola or vegetable oil (can also use butter or bacon fat) Salt and pepper to taste 2 tablespoons of butter or bacon drippings 2 tablespoons of olive oil 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
For the potatoes, wash and dry them well in a paper towel. Set aside for about 10 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, combine the potatoes and canola or vegetable oil. Season with salt and pepper, and gently mash with a fork until smooth.
Set aside in the fridge for at least 15 minutes to macerate. Return the mashed potatoes to their original state by stirring once more for about 2 minutes – this will help the hash browns brown up evenly.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit (230 degrees Celsius). Heat a cast iron skillet, or anything that is similar to a cast iron skillet, in the oven for at least 10 minutes. (If your pan doesn’t have a non-stick coating, use butter or bacon drippings instead of butter and oil.)
Using 2 tablespoons of oil or butter, grease the pan – this will help keep the hash browns from sticking. Return the pan to the oven – make sure it’s heated up and heated up evenly so that you don’t leave any bits behind in the pan when you add them.
Add one tablespoon of oil or butter to the pan and let it sit for about 45 seconds.
Add two tablespoons of browns to the pan and cook on each side for 2 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven and place on a paper towel to absorb any excess oil.
Repeat with remaining ingredients, ensuring that all the hash browns are cooked evenly.
We hope you’ll give this recipe a try soon.
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