Thursday, February 16, 2012

Baked Eggs with Crispy Hash Brown Crust

One of the highlights of our winter brunch menu was this dish:  Eggs topped with cheese, baked in a cast iron skillet, with a crispy hash brown crust hidden below.  This one is much simpler than it looks. It’s really only three ingredients: potatoes, eggs, and cheese. I love recipes that use ingredients I almost always have stocked.

Baked Eggs with Hashbrown Crust

The key to this one is pressing the freshly shredded potatoes between dish towels or layers of paper towels to get them as DRY as possible.  That dryness is what aids in their transformation to the crispy hash brown crust.  Once they’re dry you press them firmly and evenly into the bottom of a hot cast iron skillet. 

After the first side is browned you flip the whole crust over to brown on the other side.  The shredded potatoes are so intertwined that the flip is actually pretty easy to do.

Baked Eggs with Hashbrown Crust

I’ve made this multiple times over the past few weeks.  It feels special and fancy for a weekend morning breakfast, but it’s so easy to pull together. 

Baked Eggs with Hashbrown Crust


Baked Eggs with Crispy Hash Brown Crust

  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups fresh shredded potato (about 4 medium sized red potatoes)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 eggs
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheese (we used sharp white cheddar)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil for cast iron skillet
Shred the potatoes (I used my food processor to make quick work of this).  The quantity of potatoes you use is flexible – less will create a thinner crispier crust, more will create a thicker crust that’s soft in the middle.  I’ve done it both ways and I think I like the thinner/crispier crust… Toss the shredded potatoes with the salt, then press them firmly between two dish towels or a few layers of paper towels.  The goal is to get as much moisture out of the potatoes as possible so they’ll brown up nice and crisp.
Heat a cast iron skillet with the olive oil over medium high heat.  Add the potatoes and use the back of a large spoon to spread them evenly and then press them down firmly into a flat pancake.  Let them sit and brown, undisturbed, for about 3-4 minutes.  Make sure your heat isn’t so high that it burns the potatoes – you want them to get golden brown but not burn.  You can use your spoon to lift up an edge and take a peek to monitor progress.
When the first side is brown, use a large spatula to flip the whole thing over.  They shredded browned potatoes should be interwined with each other enough that this isn’t too difficult to do.  Let the 2nd side brown for an additional 4 minutes.
When both sides of the crust are browned, remove from heat and crack the 6 eggs evenly over the top.  Season with a little salt and pepper if desired, then sprinkle the 3/4 cup of shredded cheese over the eggs.
Pop in the oven on broil for 5-7 minutes, depending on whether you like your eggs to be soft or hard.  I like mine hard, so I let them broil for the full 7 minutes.  Slice, serve, enjoy!
Baked Eggs with Hashbrown Crust

35 comments:

  1. Simple, yet incredibly satisfying. I love the hash brown crust! Great photos.

    :)
    ButterYum

    ReplyDelete
  2. If you have a potato ricer, it is the BEST way I have ever found to get all the water out of those potatoes. This looks amazing! Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, and for frozen thawed spinach also!

      Naomi

      Delete
  3. Hi Kel, I do not have a potato ricer, but thanks for the tip for those that do! Do you just squeeze the potatoes really hard and the water drips out of the ricer? Can you tell I have never held a potato ricer? ;)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wow. Looks so yummy. Do you think it would work
    1) without the cheese
    and
    2) with eggs that are scrambled first?
    I would eat up as is...but unfortunately I married a no cheese, no egg yolk picky eater.

    xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. BFF - I do think it would work without cheese and with eggs that are scrambled first. The hash brown crust holds together fairly well on its own. With a layer of egg on top you'd be fine.

      Delete
  5. Love this recipe! Made it this morning for breakfast and it was delicious. The flavors are very simple which makes it a great dish for kids and adults plus you can garnish with salsa, sour cream, green onions and avocado to dress it up. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have made this multiple times without even thinking to garnish with sour cream, salsa, avocado, etc. I like it! Also, my husband keeps asking me invent some sort of bacon crust... :)

      Delete
  6. Brilliant idea! Why do them separately when they can be all-in-one?!?!?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Omg, that carafe in the picture - is that the base of a vacpot coffee maker?? Where did you find a blue vacpot??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Meg! It is not a vacpot coffee maker actually...It is an antique carafe set made by Gladding McBean; I found it at a community garage sale!

      Delete
  8. Mmmm. Glad I stumbled here. Looks delicious! and SIMPLE!

    ReplyDelete
  9. This looks soo good! I could handle a whole heap of this for breakfast.

    ReplyDelete
  10. You just can't beat a good old fashion cast iron pan for preparing fabulous food. So versatile. Even works on a camp fire! Well done!

    ReplyDelete
  11. That looks amazing! I am not a breakfast person but this sounds delicious!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am wondering what temp to broil these one? You don't have a temp. I tried it at 400* to the full 7 mins and the top of the eggs turned hard and the inside wasn't done.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Beth, sorry to hear your eggs didn't turn out as you'd wanted! My oven doesn't have a temp listed along with Broil...it just says Broil. I'd guess it is around 500 or more though?

      Delete
    2. I will have to try it at that temp and see if it turns out better next time. My husband loved it though. I made it for dinner and then put the leftovers in the fridge for breakfast. He warmed it up and it cooked the eggs the rest of the way. Thanks for replying to me!

      Delete
  13. Can you use frozen shredded hashbrowns? Everytime I try to shred potatoes, they turn pink! Also- do you have to break the egg yolks? I tried baking eggs once and they turned to rubber because I didn't break yolk, but maybe I overcooked as well. - Mary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Mary, I have never tried this recipe with frozen hashbrowns so I'm not sure. When I shred potatoes, they do oxidize quickly (kind of like how a banana turns brown when you cut it), so I just try to cook the shredded potatoes as quickly as possible! As for breaking the egg yolks, I didn't do that and just broiled them until they were cooked through. I prefer my eggs hard vs soft.

      Delete
    2. Mary, did you end up trying it with frozen ones? I was wondering the same thing. Mostly b/c it would be a little faster to use frozen ones!

      Delete
    3. I just made these this morning with frozen hash browns, but I thawed them first and dried them like the fresh potatoes between paper towels to get them as dry as possible. I always do this though as I don't like rubbery hash browns and frying from frozen with all that moisture makes them rubbery and not as crisp and fluffy!

      Delete
  14. I had been itching to try this recipe out since the moment I saw it on Foodgawker, and I finally got the chance to last night. As fate would have it, as soon as I was just about done browning the potatoes (I used russet potatoes btw), my electricity went out! Had to finish it off on the grill, and it was still amazing! Thanks so much for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HA! Who knew it could be finished on the grill! Very cool, and glad you were able to enjoy it! :)

      Delete
  15. There's something particularly satisfying about trying something non-traditional in my cast iron skillet. This will be a fun one to make. Great photos and explanation. Looks yummy!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Looks like an easy brunch dish to make for company!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thank you for this recipe! I haven't gotten out my grandmother's cast iron pan since she passed away. This brought back memories. :)

    ReplyDelete
  18. Made this recipe this morning with frozen hashbrowns, yes, it works perfectly. We also made it over the campfire. Don't thaw the hashbrowns just throw them in frozen, if you make this over the fire cover with a lid or aluminum foil after you put them in to get the eggs done. Would like to try adding frozen/well drained spinach or diced ham. Great camping recipe, thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Can you make this without a cast iron skillet? Or is that the secret to this?!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Any oven-safe skillet should work, but make sure it is well oiled! Let us know how it goes...

      Delete
  20. I have been making bacon, hashbrowns, and scrambled eggs almost every weekend for about 6 months at request of my children. I hate all the dishes that go with it. I made the bacon first. Then, in the same cast iron skillet, made this! Awesome! All done, in about half an hour, and in one skillet!! Thank you!!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Tomorrow is a snow day for us! And this is on our breakfast menu! mmm...wouldn't it be good with gravy? We may have to try some gravy!

    ReplyDelete
  22. How would this taste if cooked night before and refrigerated, and then heated in oven for brunch the next day?

    ReplyDelete
  23. Great recipe! We've been trying to eliminate packaged foods from our diet and this one is so simple and looks yummy!

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...