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11/20/2020

~Pan-Fried Shredded Hash-Brown Potato Pan-Cakes~

IMG_7456I accidentally put a bag of shredded hash brown potatoes in the refrigerator instead of the freezer yesterday.  What can I say, I was in a hurry.  Mistakes happen.  I am so glad I decided to open the bag before discarding the to-the-touch soggy mess this morning, because there was a nice surprise inside for me: glistening-white, ready-to-use, slightly-wet, shredded potatoes -- without all the time-consuming mess of doing it from scratch.  I may will never shred fresh potatoes again.

It didn't take but a few minutes to deduce that my supposed shredded hash brown potato tragedy, could easily, in reality, be a triumph, which played out at the dinner table that evening.  My potato-pancake-loving-family gobbled them up.  I served them with applesauce as a side-dish to my six-minute ham slices.  That said, by making them smaller (half-cup instead of one-cup size), appetizer-size, they are a perfect savory nosh at any cocktail party or festive gathering.

A cross between a thin potato pancake & a thick potato cake:

IMG_72531  30-ounce bag frozen, shredded hash-brown potatoes, thawed several hours on the countertop or overnight in the refrigerator (8 cups shredded potatoes), then, spread out and well-drained on a paper-towel lined baking sheet for about an hour 

1 1/2  cups small-diced onion

6  tablespoons pancake and waffle mix

2 1/2 teaspoons-1 tablespoon sea salt

1  tablespoon coarse-grind black pepper

3  large eggs, lightly beaten

4  tablespoon corn or peanut oil, for preparing skillet

IMG_7255 IMG_7255 IMG_7255 IMG_7255

IMG_7265 IMG_7265~Step 1.  Place the well-drained potatoes in a large bowl.  Add the diced onions.  Using a large rubber spatula, thoroughly toss the two together. In a small ramekin, stir together the pancake mix sea salt and coarse-grind black pepper.  Add the dry pancake mixture to the potato mixture, and, use the spatula to thoroughly toss again.  Using a fork, lightly beat the eggs, then add it to the bowl and use the spatula to throughly incorporate them too.  The mixture will be thick, and, will have reduced in size by about half.  Set aside.

IMG_7420 IMG_7420 IMG_7420 IMG_7420~Step 2.  When it comes to these potato pan-cakes, I start with a cold skillet.  Swirl the oil around to coat the bottom of a 14" nonstick skillet.  Place the cold skillet on the stovetop.  Measure and place 7, firmly-packed, 3/4-cup-size cups of the potato mixture in the bottom of the cold skillet.

IMG_7434 IMG_7434 IMG_7434 IMG_7434 IMG_7446~Step 3.  Adjust the heat to medium-high and allow the pan-cakes to start to lightly-brown on their bottoms for about 3-4 minutes.  When the bottoms have started to form a light-golden crust, use a spatula to smash them into 3/4"-thick discs.  Continue to cook, until nicely golden, on the first side, about 6 minutes.  Gently flip the pan-cakes over, and cook, until nicely golden, on the second side, about 6 more minutes.  Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Sour cream & chives?  Applesauce?  Your choice:

IMG_7480Pan-Fried Shredded Hash Brown Potato Pan-Cakes:  Recipe yields 7 large potatoes pancakes, or, 14 smaller, appetizer-sized potato pancakes.

Special Equipment List: cutting board; chef's knife; large rubber spatula; fork; 1-cup measure; spoon; 14" skillet, preferably nonstick; nonstick spatula; paper towels

IMG_7304Cook's Note: The day of my happy accident, my breakfast menu changed immediately.  Joe's sunny side up eggs with two sausage patties, stayed the same, but, his toasted English muffin turned into a side of my hash-brown waffles (which I typically only serve for special occasion breakfasts), and, all I had to do was drain the potatoes on a paper-towel-lined plate, dice a cup of onions, and get out my waffle maker.  ~ My Shredded Hash-Brown Potato-Pancake Waffles ~.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2020)

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