Hash Brown Casserole
Last weekend Betsy and I had one of those lazy weekends. We normally try to get out and go for a hike or something, especially now that it appears to be officially Spring.
But last weekend was dreary and rainy. So we did pretty much nothing. Well, let me rephrase that.
Betsy did lots. She worked and cleaned and was generally a productive member of society.
I did nothing but watch streaming Netflix. I’m halfway through the entire Battlestar Galactica series (DORK ALERT) and I simply can’t be bothered with much else until I finish it.
Oh. I also managed to eat almost an entire casserole. This casserole was pretty heavy though and lifting it in and out of the fridge had to burn a fair number of calories. At least that’s what I told myself.
1) Peel potatoes and run them through a box grater. Grate the potatoes on a few paper towels. Add a few more paper towels on top and press out as much liquid as possible.
2) Chop scallions and grate cheese. Add to a large bowl with potatoes and other ingredients.
3) Combine well and add to a casserole dish that’s been lightly buttered or sprayed with nonstick spray.
4) Bake dish at 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Then broil on high for a minute to crisp up the top of the casserole.
5) Serve immediately!
Prepping the Potatoes. I prepped these potatoes in the same way that I would if I was making a more standard hash brown. Start by peeling all the potatoes and removing any large bad spots that they may have.
Then just run them all through a box grater! This isn’t hard really but just be careful not to zone out and accidentally box grate your finger. I’ve done that on more than one occasion…
Lay down a few paper towels before you shred them. When you’re done shredding, press the potatoes between a few more paper towels to soak up as much liquid as possible. You’d be surprised how much liquid comes out of the potatoes and if you don’t get rid of it, your casserole might end up a bit watery.
The Other Stuff. Besides a boat load of shredded potatoes, you’ll need a few staples for any good casserole. I used sour cream for my version, but you could use Greek yogurt also. They provide the same tangy creaminess to the dish.
You don’t need to put any butter in the casserole (although I suppose you could). I just used the butter on the dish itself to make sure the casserole didn’t stick.
Chop up the scallions (use the whites and greens) and shred the cheese. Yes. There’s lots of shredding going on here.
Then stir everything together in a large bowl. Don’t forget the cayenne pepper. You could substitute paprika or chili powder, but something a bit spicy kind of makes this dish.
Once this is all stirred together really well, add it to a buttered casserole dish. You could also just spray the dish with some nonstick spray if that’s more your style.
Bake this guy at 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes. It’s takes a while to cook a potato casserole like this. You want to make sure the potatoes are cooked through.
At the end of the cooking, I flipped on my broiler and broiled the casserole for just a minute so the crust got nice and browned.
Let this cool for a few minutes and then serve it up! It’s great with ketchup (although I don’t like ketchup) or hot sauce.
The corner pieces are especially valuable due to their maximum crunchy edges.
This is almost a lazy man’s hash brown. You kind of just throw all this stuff in a dish and bake it and it’s almost certainly going to be delicious.
Whether you’re feeding a crowd or feeding yourself on a dreary weekend, it’s hard not to like this dish.