Garlic + Herb Crushed Potatoes
Yesterday, I asked Jon what we should have for breakfast. Sausage, we decided, since we had bacon the day before. (When you’re on vacation you indulge in all the breakfast meats, okay?) Scrambled eggs, we decided, because like I said, Jon makes some kick-ass scrambled eggs. Potatoes, Jon decided, and right away I knew he meant THESE potatoes. I was hesitant, because they’re a bit involved on the potato-cooking scale of microwaved to twice-baked-and-loaded, but when he offered to boil the water for me, which is obviously the hardest part of this recipe, I just couldn’t turn him down.
Now if memory serves, the first time I ever made these potatoes was actually the last time we were up at the cabin. I used a bag of mixed baby potatoes for that first batch—some red, some Yukon, and some purple. You can also change the herbs seasonally like I do, or experiment by cooking them in different types of fat if you want to get really wild. No matter what variations you use, these can be served for breakfast or dinner, easily taking the place of home fries or oven-roasted potatoes at either meal.
After a considerable amount of experimentation, I’ve decided that I prefer baby Yukon gold potatoes for this recipe, because they have a rich, smooth texture when cooked, so the end result when prepared this way is creamy, almost like a mashed potato on the inside, yet crispy on the outside. If you don’t mind an extra step or two on your journey to potato greatness, then I have a feeling these are going to be your new favorite.
Garlic + Herb Crushed Potatoes
Serves 4 as a side
1 bag baby Yukon gold potatoes (usually around 1 lb)
Kosher salt and fresh-ground black pepper
1 TB olive oil
1 TB salted butter
2 large cloves garlic, crushed, peeled
1 sprig rosemary
1 sprig sage
In a large saucepan cover potatoes with cold water by two inches and season liberally with salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-high, and cook until potatoes are easily pierced with a paring knife and knife slips out of potatoes easily, about 15 minutes for potatoes the size of ping pong balls. Drain potatoes and cool for a minute or two.
On a large cutting board, use the bottom of a glass or Mason jar to gently crush each potato. You want to press them just enough so that the skin splits open and they flatten out, but the potato stays intact otherwise. They should be about ½ to ¾ of an inch thick after being crushed.
In a large non-stick or cast iron skillet, heat oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic cloves, rosemary, and sage, and swirl pan to infuse. Allow garlic and herbs to cook in the fat for a minute before adding potatoes. Arrange potatoes in pan in one layer and season with salt and pepper. Cook about 5 minutes on the first side, or until golden and crisp. If you notice at any point that the pan is looking dry, which almost always ends up being the case, feel free to drizzle in a little extra oil or scatter a few pats of butter around the pan. Once golden, flip potatoes, season again with salt and pepper, and cook another 5 minutes to crisp up the second side.
Remove potatoes to a serving platter and garnish with a fresh sprig each of rosemary and sage. I love to serve these with maple sour cream, which can be made by simply mixing 2 TB pure maple syrup into ¼ cup sour cream. You know I can’t help but get a little fancy, even if they are just potatoes. That being said, it’s also totally acceptable to dip these bad boys in ketchup.
What’s your all-time favorite way to eat potatoes?