Did you know hash browns don’t have to come out of a bag?
Not that I’m looking down my nose at bagged hash browns. Right now I have approximately five bags of varying quantities hogging precious space in my freezer, half of them congealed into an unusable, impenetrable solid mass thanks to freezer burn. Thanks (for absolutely nothing,) freezer burn!
Hash browns are like yogurt, frozen corn, petite diced tomatoes, and wine, if we’re being honest, in that I unnecessarily stock up on them every time I go to the grocery store even though I’ve already got plenty on hand at home. Potato skillet with creamy mango-wine sauce, sweet corn, and watery tomatoes, anyone?
Moral of the story, my kitchen inventory skills are lacking (though I’m not super upset about my wine rack always being adequately stocked!)
I have even more reason to stop buying pre-made hash browns because Ben and I have been cutting our own lately – home fries-style. I don’t know why this concept never occurred to me until a few months ago. I guess I always thought the bagged stuff was par-boiled first or something like that. News flash, it’s not! (I’m all news flash this! and news flash that! at home these days.)
I’ve mentioned a few times lately that we’ve been loving skillet dinners made with lots of sauteed veggies and eggs – all based around chopped potatoes. I was pumped to see a lot of similar options at J. Christopher’s, which we visited in Savannah a couple weeks ago, and LOVED the California-esque combination I ordered for breakfast including fresh baby spinach, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, and creamy avocado layered on top of crispy home fries then topped with two perfectly cooked sunny side up eggs.
Being a lover of re-creating my favorite vacation eats, I decided to whip up a copycat Spinach, Avocado and Sun-Dried Tomato Home Fries Skillet pronto upon our return home!
A lot of breakfast skillets can be heavy, drowning in cheese and dripping with oil. Trust me, I am always up for a down and dirty brunch, but it was surprisingly refreshing to devour a light and healthy breakfast skillet for once. Despite being a Midwesterner in the south, I felt like a cool west-coaster eating this combo of spinach, avocado and sun-dried tomato in Savannah. It’s fantastic, flavorful and I really liked how the spinach wasn’t cooked to death. They added it on top then let the heat of the potatoes and eggs soften it slightly.
I had this skillet for breakfast, but it’s great for dinner too. Breakfast for dinner – it’s not a new concept, but it’s a good one! Now dinner for breakfast? I just can’t wrap my mind around that. Slow clap for those of you eating leftover soup and spaghetti at sunrise.
Start by chopping 2 medium-sized russet potatoes – you’ll need 4 cups total. Wash the potatoes then cut them in half lengthwise, and then cut each half into 1/2″ planks. Slice the planks into 1/2″ slices then 1/2″ chunks. It’s all about the 1/2″ cut!
Heat 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (don’t be scared of healthy fats, folks,) in a large skillet over medium heat then add the potatoes, 1/2 small red onion that’s been chopped, and 2 minced garlic cloves. Season with seasoning salt (I used Lawry’s) and pepper then toss to coat and saute for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are golden brown and tender.
You can expedite this process by placing a lid on top of the pan and stirring occasionally. My cast iron doesn’t have a lid though, so I browned these babies the old-fashioned way!
I used a flat-edged wooded spoon to scrape up all the “bits” in the bottom as the potatoes cooked. Bits are the best!
Remove the skillet from the heat then add 1 big handful chopped fresh baby spinach and 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil that have been chopped. Season lightly with regular salt and pepper then set aside.
Meanwhile, cook 2-6 eggs (the skillet will feed 2-3 people so make as many eggs as each person wants) in a skillet next door. I love me a good sunny side up egg. Here’s my trick for cooking ’em perfectly: add the eggs to a nonstick sprayed skillet over medium heat then place a lid on top when the bottoms are set. Cook until the tops are just set then season with salt and pepper. Done!
Scoop the spinach, sun-dried tomato, and potato mixture onto plates then top with chopped avocado and the eggs. Breakfast (or dinner!) is served!
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Spinach, Avocado and Sun-Dried Tomato Home Fries Skillet
Spinach, Avocado and Sun-Dried Tomato Home Fries Skillet is light and healthy yet perfectly filling. Enjoy for breakfast or dinner!
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 medium-sized russet potatoes (about 4 cups,) cut into a 1/2″ dice
- 1/2 small red onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- gluten-free seasoning salt and pepper
- 1 big handful baby spinach, chopped
- 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, chopped
- 1 avocado, chopped
- 2-6 eggs
- Heat extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat then add potatoes, red onion, and garlic. Season with seasoning salt and pepper then stir to coat. Cook for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are golden brown and tender. Place a lid on top to make cooking go faster.
- Remove skillet from heat then add baby spinach and sun-dried tomatoes on top. Season lightly with regular salt and pepper then set aside.
- Cook eggs to your preference (over-easy/medium, scrambled, etc.) then season with salt and pepper. Scoop potato, spinach, and sun-dried tomato mixture onto plates then top with chopped avocados and eggs and then serve.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.
Sure, hash browns may cook a bit faster but these golden home fries studded with fresh spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and avocado are worth every second at the stove. Enjoy!