Tonight I was making scrambled eggs (some minced leeks and shredded cheddar tossed in) and some pumpkin waffles (so good), when I had a hankering to make some hashbrowns too.
I love hashbrowns, but they are a pain to make. You have to keep turning them in the pan. Too hot a pan without turning, and they burn. A cool enough pan you don't have to turn them as often, and they never crisp up. Making mujardrah is only slightly more time consuming than good hashbrowns.
But I love hashbrowns.
Then I realized I had a hot waffle iron sitting there....
Two smallish potatoes, finely shredded, then pressed between paper towels to get the excess water out, tossed with a tablespoon of butter to give it a *touch* of oil (I would add a tiny bit more and add a single egg to about four times as many potatoes for a little binding) and 25 blissfully unattended minutes later... voila.
Not bad for a first shot. Perfectly crispy on the outside, nicely cooked on the inside.
This led to a discussion of what else this could be done with, and the next experiment?
Oh yes. This must be done.
In vaguely related news, I have now found the optimal way to cook steaks to get that wonderful charred outer thin layer, with a beautifully so-rare-its-still-mooing inside...
A flamethrower. Nope, not kidding. 500,000BTU/hr propane flamethrower used for weed control. Took an iron griddle plate, placed it on fire bricks on my patio, aimed the nearly three foot flame at it for a couple of minutes, then tossed the 2" thick slabs of beef on it. Smoke and sizzling was *insane*. About 45 seconds later, flipped the steaks, then played the flame over the outside to cook the edges. The fat ignited, and kept burning for quite a bit on its own.
The end result? Damned delicious. Next time I'm going to try it with a good cut of meat, and trim the excess fat from the outer edges first.
So what all is your favorite bit of recent cooking insanity that worked out better than you expected?