Saturday, June 16, 2012

Fried Potatoes

Potatoes are as good a reason to get out of bed in the morning as any. I mean, french fries (properly done, that is, so they're a mix of crispy and tender and salty and smooth), potato crisps (by which I mean the kind that Frito-Lay sells in crinkly bags; Pringles apply as well), chips (as in "fish and", found primarily in England, does not refer to fries but rather a thick wedge of soft potato goodness), hash browns (shredded or cubed, loose or in a cake, whatever; tater tots fall into this category), garlicky mashed potatoes (that you make yourself with a weird old potato masher that your flatmate got from her boyfriend's dad, and that you guess on all the measurements), and, last but definitely not least, fried potatoes, preferably with onions.
I'll see if I can fit more commas into this post. It might be hard.
My potatoes, if made in the morning, are unlikely to contain onions because I don't have the time. By this I mean that I don't have the willpower to drag my sorry ass out of bed, scrape the sleep out of my eyes, and make breakfast like a real person.
The way I talk, you'd think I was Pinocchio or something. "I'm a real girl!" I hope this abates upon employment in the real world, which hopefully involves working more than three-hour shifts every three days or so. I'm holding out for a breakroom, and enough hours that I qualify for breaks. Not that I'll turn down a job that doesn't offer those.
This morning, I woke up way earlier than I had expected and made myself some fried potatoes with onions. The onions add what feels like forty five minutes to your cooking time, but let them cook slowly. It's not worth it to rush.

Fried Potatoes and Onions

4 baby potatoes or 1 big-ass potato per person
About 1/4 onion per person
Oil, butter, or other greasy substance that doesn't catch fire when heated

The night before breakfast, boil potatoes. If working with a big potato, peel (if you want) and cut into large cubes so it will cook in under two hours.
Put cooked potato in the fridge overnight. Use a covered container if you feel paranoid about your food drying out.

Boiled potatoes and way more onion than I used.

The morning of breakfast, about an hour before you want to eat (trust me on this one, guys. Onions take a long time to cook), cut your potatoes into small cubes, about half an inch at the largest. Peel if you so desire, but there's good stuff in the peels. Set aside. Have a small snack; this will take forever and you will be very hungry.

Cubed potatoes and all the onion I used.

Heat olive oil, or butter if you're blessed with low cholesterol, in a skillet.
Slice onion generously. Cut rings in half if you feel like it.

I consider raw onion to be potential deliciousness.
Caramelize onion slices/rings. Use plenty of oil; you'll need it for the potatoes anyway. This is probably the longest step, unless your onions go straight to burnt. Try to avoid burnt.

This is a good time to add potatoes.
 When onions are brown, but not black yet, add cubed potatoes and some salt.

If you used butter, the potatoes would be much more brown and golden.
 The amount of salt is entirely up to you. Start small; overly salty food is never pleasant. You can use pepper, too.
Fry potatoes and onions until potatoes are golden and crispy and the onions are just about burnt.

Breakfast of champions, by which I mean me.
It's a sweet-and-salty thing. The onions are very sweet, while the potatoes should be fairly salty to balance that. The onions are soft and caramelly while the potatoes should have crispy bits and be fairly dry to offset the onions.
I also recommend black tea with sugar and milk to complete your morning.

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