Sunday, September 27, 2009

An Important Sunday Question

Homemade Shredded Hash Browned Potatoes.

Do you put ketchup on them or not?

What about cheese?




Hey, I like to know who I’m dealing with out there.


  1. No ketchup.

    Maybe cheese.

    Probably not gravy, since it potentially interferes with the hash browns' egg yolk-absorbing potential.

  2. I would like some hash browns now please.

    Without ketchup. Ketchup is an abominations. Cheese is acceptable, though gravy is a bit extreme, and both camouflage the excellent savor of perfectly-browned potatoes and slivers of caramelized onion.

    Alas, there are no hash browns within sight, nor even any condiments. Instead, I am sitting outdoors in a rainy park, fortunately with a canopy overhead, attempting to inject a wee bit of history into a local Shakespeare festival. Hashbrowns would be an improvement even if they came with the dreaded ketchup.

  3. Ketchup: only if you are less than eight years old.

    Cheese maybe. But only if the hashbrowns are real crispy. And maybe with crumbled bacon.

    Gravy: OK if it is country style sausage gravy with lots of pepper and some Tobasco handy.

    But then, they are pretty good plain with a slab of fried ham on the side.

  4. Wow. Impossible to advise, your Sire-ship. Could be none, could be all. Too many variables -- time of day, the weather, your mood. Russet potatoes or Yukon Gold...

    Also, Eric is spouting nonsense. Since eggs should only be consumed scrambled or over-hard, I don't know why one would have to worry about absorbing yolk.

  5. Scattered, smothered & covered please. And make 'em crunchy.

    For those of you not familiar with Waffle House lingo, a familiar Southern staple...
    scattered on the grill
    smothered in onions
    covered with cheese
    grilled to crunchy perfection

    Nothing else is needed. No ketchup, no gravy.

    Ummm, wish I could afford a trip to WH this week. Yum.

    Damn Jim, now I'm hungry!

  6. Having lived in the South a couple of times in my life, I must heartily agree with Wendy. Except that adding peppers is to the mix adds a nice flavor.

  7. We had these for breakfast this morning. Hubby forgot to make the sourdough starter for pancakes, so he improvised. :) Chopped onions and garlic, cooked crispy-tender on the griddle.

    Sorry Jeff -- soaking them in egg yolk is the best thing about fried eggs, IMO.

    If we were having just hashbrowns with nothing else, we'd cover and smother them, definitely.

    Ketchup is just plain sacrilegious, though.

    Okay Jim -- we've shared, now it's your turn: How do you do hashbrowns?

  8. Ketchup : nope, don't like the taste.

    Cheese : depending on the mood, a bit of gruyere or cheddar can be welcomed.

    Gravy : no, it takes the crunchiness away.

  9. Despite being the ketchup king, in this ketchup is a secondary question.

    Is there maple syrup involved? (grin)

    If so, then no ketchup, no cheese, no gravy.

    If not, then have fun any way you like.

    I can't abide absolute statements. (double-edged-grin)

    Dr. Phil

  10. Well Alesia,

    I make hashbrowns from scratch, shredding the potatoes in my kitchen aid. The potatoes get soaked in at least two changes of cold water to remove the excess starch (starch makes potatoes soggy after cooking - if you're making fries removing the starch is an essential step). Then spin dry in a salad spinner and pat with paper towels. Fresh onion and raw garlic, chopped fine, added next. Then mix in fresh paprika, Cajun seasoning, fresh ground pepper.

    Fry on very hot cast iron griddle in olive oil with a tablespoon of butter or bacon fat added for flavor.

    When browned, fold in a cup of sharp shredded cheddar. Cook until cheese is melted and brown and crunchy.

    Serve with a dollop of sour cream.

    If I don't have sour cream, I, well, uh, I like ketchup on mine.


    Lysambre, as I recall you are a French woman living in England. I'm pretty sure that if you ever touch ketchup they take away your citizenship, wipe your brain, and put you on the first boat for the Americas.


    See? Phil gets hashbrowns. Maple syrup (Birch syrup is better, Phil) mmmmm.

  11. If it's just potatoes: a bit of salt. Sop up over-medium egg yolk.

    If it's fancylike, I like them with onions, garlic, green peppers, ham, mushrooms, salsa, cheese, ... heck, just pretend like they're an omelet. ;)

  12. I don't typically do shredded hash browns.

    Not because they're from the devil, but because cubed fried taters with onions, garlic, parsley, salt and a ton of coarse ground black pepper is just so much better. If they're for dinner, add in chopped peppers, too.

    Breakfast, lunch, dinner - it's all good.

    "This message has been brought to you by Lipitor. Lipitor - when you can't lay off the fried taters and you don't want to drop dead of a massive coronary. Lipitor!"

  13. It's been to long since I've been to the House. Dammit, Wendy!

  14. No ketchup. Maybe cheese. But the best is, like Vince suggested, onions, peppers, and salt & pepper. Fried crunchy. And actually I don't care if they're shredded or cubed.

    Mmmm... potatoes. I haven't had them in a long time. No particular reason, just hasn't occurred to me.

  15. No ketchup for me. I do like to stir them into the corned beef hash, though.

    I haven't tried sour cream on ordinary hash browns. (Not that Jim's sound ordinary), but love it on latkes, along with applesauce.

  16. No ketchup. No cheese. No gravy. Just over easy eggs.


    Though I had Belgian Waffles with fresh strawberries this morning, so I can't really complain.

  17. No ketchup. I reserve that for french fries. No cheese. Vegan and dreadfully lactose intolerant (oh god oh god oh god I miss cheese). No gravy. That's for the mashed potatoes.

    Garlic and onions are good, maybe some red and/or green peppers. Fry them up crispy, toss on a wee bit of salt and some freshly ground pepper. Dang, and now I'm hungry again.

  18. Birch syrup? BIRCH SYRUP?

    Want Birch Syrup.

    Huge fan of birch beer. (grin)

    Dr. Phil

  19. Certainly ketchup (but not the cheap stuff) with a little salt. Cheese if you want, but it needs to be strong (extra sharp cheddar or better yet horseradish). Gravy not so much, unless it's spicy sausage gravy, then I'll chance it.

    Sour cream is very acceptable (combination of tastes, textures and temperatures, yum).

  20. My potato eating habits are none of your fucking business. I know this is tied to that new job of yours. Just more goddamn government snooping masquerading as idle curiosity about my breakfasting habits.

    You can't fool me!

    I will, however, admit that sour cream is just plain nasty. Dude! It's cream that's soured! It's spoiled! Throw that shit out!

  21. Doesn't like sour cream?

    Good Lord! Potato mites have eaten Nathan's brain! I'll hold him down, one of you grab his tongue before he swallows it!

  22. Mmmmmmmmmm Birch Beer. Time for a Sunday evening trip to the local store methinks. What? Hash Browns? What about them? Me, I can take 'em or leave 'em, especially with oodles of Heinz. Just don't serve me those frozen ones dagnabit!

  23. Wendy, I don't know that I'd brag about that. By his own account, Eric hasn't had, uh, intimate relations in a long, long, long, long time.

    He drools if the cat rubs up against his ankle.

    Just sayin.

  24. Yes to birch beer, please.

    Next thing you'll probably be asking what I want on top of cheesecake.

    There are limits, Jim. You're getting mighty close.


  25. Oh, we're not anywhere near the limits yet, Cassie. Wait till I suggest that grilled cheese sandwiches made with that revolting petroleum product, Veleeta, are the devil's work...

  26. Velveeta is fit for only one thing: fish bait. And if you forget and leave it in the tackle box over the winter, no problem. I recently inherited my dad's fishing gear and in the tackle box was a half used brick of Velveeta. It was so old there was no bar code on the package. It was still pliable.

    Nathan: try a little aluminum foil under your hat. It reflects the black helicopter spy rays and also minimizes exposure to chemtrails.

  27. Dave H.

    I'm gonna let Michelle school ya' on proper tin foil hat usage.

  28. Freshly made ketchup, as opposed to the red stuff from the grocery, would be alright. I plan on making and cannning ketchup this weekend or next. I also make and can mustard, but I've lots of that left.

    Bar Boulud (NYC, B'way about 64th st) serves steak frite with their ketchup on the side. First time I've eaten fries with ketchup since about age 8.

    I once worked in a factory that made American cheese, you don't want to know. Lots worse than sausage.

  29. Okay, I'll grant you homemade ketchup. Haven't done that in ages!

    Velveeta.... the things I do for domestic harmony, I should get a medal. My partner does most of the cooking, and he likes the stuff. You've got to pick your battles, you know.

    In revenge for yesterday's hash brown tauntings, let me tell you about my breakfast this morning of fresh Asian pear cobbler, extra topping, spiced with cinnamon and ginger and vanilla, served with coffee from the local roaster.

    *reaches for the spoon*

    Sorry, it's too early for ice cream.

  30. No ketchup, yes cheese, depends on what kind of gravy. Brown, yes, Country...maybe.

  31. Lots of onions fried crispy, cheese, country gravy and some Tabasco.

  32. On this Monday morning, I had Cheerios with a little bit of lactose-free milk.

    You all can keep your hashbrowns and have mine as well. I'd rather make mashed potatoes out of a good tater.

  33. No to ketchup unless the hashbrowns aren't properly flavored in the first place.

    Yes to cheese. Various types, but I love cheddar on them. Then, follow it up with a heart attack. Gravy - not brown but white, with sausage, preferably home made.

  34. Jim - PA-LEEZE - I was talking about Waffle House! I don't know to what you're referring to. Hmph.

    And Jim, if Eric's taking the cat to Waffle House, it may explain a lot of other things...
    just sayin...

  35. Wendy, I used to live in the South, I've been to the Aweful Waffle (that's what my wife calls it). As the great Bill Murray said, Folks don't eat schnitzel, they're using schnauzer" ... or in this case, cat.

    Waffle House - if you're not drunk and it's not 3AM really what in the hell are you doing here?

  36. Velveeta. This body is MADE from Velveeta. And Heinz ketchup. And other assorted things.

    Actually I do like really good real cheese. Bleu, gorgonzola, gouda, leiden, cheddar, colby, havarti, Jarhlsburg, Boursin, brie, etc., etc. But I also like Velveeta. Just had some with bologna, hard salami and ketchup. Mmmm...

    Used to eat a lot of Twinkies, too.

    Dr. Phil

  37. Well, sure, doc. You're a physicist, you've trained for it. That shit would kill a lesser man.

  38. OMG - have I some of the BEST Awful Waffle stories from over the years.

    Most amusing WH here used to be the one on the edge of the Buckhead Party Bar district, about 2:15AM, just after the bars closed. You had to get there just ahead of the drunks, then just sit back and watch them roll in for their grease fix. We'd tip well to to keep our table after we were really done, waitresses knew us! Bar district is all but gone in that part of town now, Cheesecake Factory drunks just aren't that amusing.

    Why, yes, we had been consuming at home & used that as our late night entertainment! Why ever do you ask??

    Actually, several of us lived about a mile away then...easy access for late night amusement!

    I've been at fully costumed Halloween parites where we went en masse to the WH down the street in the wee hours, much to the amusement of truckers coming in off the interstate for an early breakfast!

    Other times we'd just do a midnight phone tree - hey, you still up? Yep. WH @wherever in 30 minutes, you in? Yep, save me a seat! OK, see if yur roomies want to go...

    Ah, good times!!

  39. No cheese. Ketchup on the side, used very sparingly only if needed.

    However, Jim, looking at your recipe, ketchup wouldn't be needed at all with the fabulous aromatics and spices. No bacon fat or butter for me, though. Just a little olive oil or, perhaps, peanut oil - an oil with a 350 degree smoke point would be preferred (the approximate smoke point of butter and lard).

    And keep the eggs away. Yech!

  40. Jim, you could come down and cook hashbrowns for us anytime. :)

    I occasionally like sour cream on them too, but usually only if we have some good salsa or pico de gallo in the house.


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