I’m pretty sure that out of everything, the thing I miss the most about being an omnivore is giant smorgasbord-style breakfasts. Whether first thing in the morning or in the middle of the night, I LOVE a big mix of waffles and super cheesy eggs and hash browns and bacon and, and, and…
I’m sure it seems strange that the first recipe that I put on my brand new blog (that only took 700,000 hours to figure out – if I actually have, that is) is something I haven’t eaten since I ordered a ton of different sides while at brunch, like, ten years ago? It is sort of perfect though… This blog is supposed to be a mix of me figuring my way around a kitchen, mixed with making food that I don’t eat myself. This recipe has it all.
Every time I make this, it’s different so forgive me if I post something similar down the line… Today’s jumble was pretty spectacular if I may say so myself. A bed a spinach and arugula, topped with warm refried pinto beans mixed with two types of cheese plus jalapeños, cilantro and onion. Already sounds great, right? Stay with me now… The first level has wide, thin (almost chip-like) hash browns and an over easy egg. The second level starts with the same bed of greens plus yummy bean mix but then we add more traditional hash browns and a poached egg. Two levels were enough for Vinnie this morning but there are times when I keep changing things a bit, layer by layer, until the plate is a mile high. Today’s Jumble was topped off with avocado, onion, tomato and cilantro and MAN did it look good! As usual, I got carried away with the amount of food but that makes for an awesome breakfast burrito for another day!
Sorry if this first part seems slow but I had NO idea how much moisture potatoes hold! If you don’t get at least some of it out before attempting to make hash browns they become a sticky, mushy mess. When I was first trying out hash browns in my own kitchen, I didn’t even have a peeler. You’ll see in the pictures below that, even now, I still have to makeshift basically everything.
To start off, rinse and peel a potato (or potatoes… my serving sizes are generally going to be for just one or two people since I rarely, if ever, need to cook for more). Today I grated half the potato for more traditional hash browns and then used the peeler on the other half to make thin, crispy, almost chip-like hash browns. After the potato(es) are all cut up in the manner that suits you, either wrap them in a tea towel and squish out the excess moisture or flatten them all out and use the roller like I did. I am not patient enough to put the time in to get enough of the moisture out, hence the wine bottle doing the last bit of work for me in the picture below. After I put my cabernet to work for me I started on everything else.
Although probably not very efficient, I pull everything I can find out of our fridge and then get choppin’. This style of cooking does not allow for much extra counter space but I much prefer having everything all ready to go before I start with anything on the stove. That way I can add as I go or just pile everything on top when it’s somehow all done at the same time.
Now the beans… Open a can of beans, scoop them into a microwave safe dish, add stuff to it then heat it up in the microwave.
…and were back to the hash browns. Lightly toss the sliced, diced, peeled, whatever potatoes in flour, baking soda, garlic powder, pepper and a little parmesan. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan until it’s shimmery but not smoking then add the potatoes. I cooked the two different types separately this morning but it’s your call. I like my hash browns crispy so I cooked them for about 7 or so minutes on medium heat, flipping once nearly every minute.
Now egg #1… a runny yolk is big part of this meal in my opinion, but to each their own. I did the first one today over-easy. Just to catch everyone up, we now have a bed of spinach and arugula topped with bean mixture, then crispy hash browns and now egg numero uno.
Now we start the second batch of hash browns and get started on the next level of our delicious breakfast tower. A sprinkle of spinach, a few spoonfuls of the refried beans, maybe a little extra cheese if you’re anything like myself before topping off with the second level of hash browns.
Now we get a little sophisticated. The poached egg…
I was terrified that this would be the most difficult thing in the world (I blame the movie Julie and Julia) but its not at all! Boil water in a small pot. Once the water is boiling, add a teaspoon of white vinegar and swirl the water with a slotted spoon so it creates a perfect tornado-like motion. Crack an egg into a small bowl (or cup or whatever you have at hand) to make it easier to slide the egg into the eye of the tornado quickly and easily. Give it a couple gentle swirls to keep it moving before topping with a lid and removing the pot from heat. Let it cook for 2-3 minutes while assembling your avocado, onion, cilantro etc… on top of layer #2 of hash browns. When time’s up, remove the egg from the water with your slotted spoon, maybe let it dry off for a second so it’s not vinegary, and place it right on top of your plate full of food. Sprinkle a little pepper and paprika on top and you’re all set to dig in. You’ll thank me… once you wake up from your post-breakfast nap, that is. 🙂