Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Taters Gone Wild

You've heard me say many a time that my guys are meat and potatoes men. And while they'd be happy with mashed potatoes every night, I like to keep my eyes open for new ways to turn a spud. So this one really caught my eye when I saw the PW fixing these cheesy hash browns for her crew.

Yes, there are peppers in this recipe, but NO it's not hot. I promise and will explain later.

Here's what you'll need:
  • 1 bag southern style hash browns (that's means they're diced instead of shredded)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 (or more) Anaheim chili pepper, diced, seeds and ribs removed
  • 1/2 - 1 poblano pepper, diced, seeds and ribs removed
  • 1 jalapeno, finely chopped, seeds and ribs removed
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Monterrey jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 T butter

Oh, and I almost forgot--

Bacon! 4-6 slices, cooked and roughly chopped. Everything's better with bacon, right?
I cook my bacon in a skillet, remove it and drain the grease, then add the butter without wiping out the pan. Why waste all that flavor?
Once the butter is melted, add your onion and peppers. BTW, if you can't find Anaheim peppers, you can add a can of diced green chilies, just add then at the end, since they won't need to cook.
Doesn't that look purty? And it smells wonderful.
We're going to keep cooking this over medium to medium-high heat.
Starting to brown, but not there yet. Keep cooking.
Ah, finally. This is what we're looking for, almost a blackened state (that does not mean burned either). See how much they've cooked down and everything is turning brown? This took about 20 minutes. You don't want to rush it. And guess what? All that cooking cooks the heat right out of those peppers. All that's left is the flavor. 
Now you're ready to add your potatoes. Yep, they're still frozen.

Toss everything together then dump it all into a buttered baking dish. Top with shredded cheeses and bacon.

Bake in a 375 degree oven 30-35 minutes, or whenever it's hot an bubbly.
Omigosh! This smells amazing.
And tastes even better.
These babies certainly livened up my boring chicken and broccoli.
My boys loved 'em. Even asked me to make them again. That's like two thumbs up from Siskel and Ebert (miss those guys).
So what do you say? Do you trust me enough to try it WITH the peppers? Go ahead. Ree would be proud of you.



  1. You had me until the bacon. LOL. I'm game to try this with tame, not-so-hot peppers. Does that count? I've never even heard of a poblano pepper! I'm thinking a nice yellow or red sweet bell pepper would be nice instead. And maybe orange to really jazz up the colour. I know b-o-r-i-n-g!

    1. Ah, yes...Kav, the boring:-) Red pepper would be nice and colorful. Then you could toss in a can of diced green chilies at the end. Though you should add in one jalapeno, just for kicks. Like I said, the heat cooks out. What? You don't believe me?

      And, of course, you don't have to do the bacon. Just the cheese would still taste great. Unless you have some soy version of bacon. Eeww. Soy bacon. That just sounds wrong:-P

  2. Okay, Mindy. I'll be brave! I actually love poblanos. They're mild enough for me. But the jalepeno?? I'll cook until caramelized and then trust you that the heat really cooks out. :)

    These look amazing! Of course, anything would be good with bacon and cheese on top. (Sorry, Kav!) :)

    1. We're on the same page, Missy. Bacon and cheese are hard to beat.

      So you love poblano, huh? Hubby does too, but they're too hot for me. But like I said, all the heat cooks out, making it tame enough for former yanks like myself:-)

    2. My favorite cheese dip is at On the Border. They put poblanos in it. They're perfect! Maybe because they're cooked. :) Of course, they also make homemade chips as well. A good combo.

  3. YUM! this sounds easy enough even for me! and heat doesn't bother me too much so long as I don't end up with a bunch of seeds - and how come if the heat cooks out my chili with that accidental habanero got hotter every time I heated it up?! well 'accidental' in that I didn't realize it was all that hot - it was so cute like one of those candy pumpkin candy thingies but it was HOT! I've put poblana and anaheim in breakfast tacos though and they weren't hot just flavorful.

    1. Ooo, an accidental habanero can be painful, Susanna. Yikes! Was it cooked prior to going into the chili? I think it's cooking/sauteing these for so long that kills the heat. But I could be wrong. They sure did choke me up while I was removing the seeds though. I about coughed myself silly.

    2. nope I decided to just chop it up and stuck it in there - guess I was thinking orange was like bell pepper - it wasn't. It was tolerable when I tasted it but by the time I let it simmer another couple of hours then brought to work and heated a bowl in the microwave it was unbearable :-( that's what happens when you grow up with only 3 peppers - bell, cayenne and jalapeno. I've never touched another after that mistake!

  4. My husband grows habaneros in the garden and we have a special fence around them with a locked gate. The toddlers (whoever is that age that summer) always think they're pretty. We made the gate after our 3rd kid bit one and ended up with blisters covering his whole mouth. Hubby loves them. I think they're poison.

    P.S. this looks tasty!!

    1. maybe you could use them in this recipe for your hubby! I feel for the poor kiddo - I had mine dilutd and it still set me on fire!

  5. hey is it 2 lbs of taters? boy may have to scale this one waaayy down if it is! I don't wanna be tempted to eat 10 servings!