Weird coincidences do happen sometimes, like the fact that I was born in Minsk, Belarus and my husband was born in Pinsk, Belarus, but we actually met in NY state. Our Belorussian heritage could be why we share very similar tastebuds. When it comes to an indulgent breakfast that we both love, it usually includes hash browns, eggs and bacon. One of the stereotypes of Belorussians did come true for both of us, we are admittedly “bulbyashi” to the core. (Bulbyashi – “бульбаши” is a play on the Belorussian word for potato , “bulba”, if you’re not familiar with the Russian language.) It looks like our son is following in our footsteps. Nathaniel loves potatoes.
On one of those relaxing weekend mornings, I got struck with the idea of recreating this common breakfast into something completely different – stuffed hash browns. After trying it out and tasting the results, both Sergi and I agreed that this was such a great idea. It’s basically like a big, inside-out omelet, since the eggs are encased inside the potatoes. Isn’t that pretty cool?
The potatoes are perfectly golden and crisp wrapped around a filling of soft scrambled eggs, bacon and lots of gooey, melted cheese. What a neat package. One of these ginormous “stuffed hash browns” or “inside out omelets” (whatever you want to call it) is enough to feed two, so it’s a great way to start off a romantic weekend.
1 lbs potatoes (I used Yukon Gold), peeled and grated, 2 packed cups
2 Tablespoons oil (plus 1/2 teaspoon for the eggs)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 Tablespoon crumbled cooked bacon
1/2 Tablespoon fresh green onions
1/4 cup grated Mozzarella cheese (or any other cheese)
salt, ground black pepper, to taste
In a 10 inch nonstick skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the grated potatoes, pressing them down.
Normally when I’m making hash browns, I like to rinse out some of the starch first and then wring out as much moisture as possible, so that the potatoes are nice and fluffy. In this case, you actually WANT the potatoes to stick together, so you need to leave all the starch from the potatoes in there and press the potatoes together as much as possible. Season with salt and ground black pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes on medium high heat, just until the underside of the potatoes softens and turns slightly golden.
Turn the potatoes over to the other side. You might need to use two spatulas. If the potatoes don’t stay all in one piece, don’t panic; it will still work out in the end. Flip it over, squish all the pieces together again, and the torn pieces should still adhere to each other while they are cooking on the other side. If the potato layer cracks even with all your best efforts, it will still taste great.
Season the other side with salt and ground black pepper.
In another skillet, heat the remaining teaspoon of oil until shimmering, add the slightly beaten eggs, season with a pinch of salt and ground black pepper. Cook on low heat just until the eggs are scrambled but still somewhat underdone. The eggs will continue to cook in the center of the potatoes.
You can be as creative as you want with your filling. Other possibilities: Sautéed mushrooms, peppers, onions, different herbs, broccoli, zucchini, sausage, ham, spinach, avocado, salsa, tomatoes, etc.
- 1 lbs potatoes (I used Yukon Gold), peeled and grated, 2 packed cups
- 2 Tablespoons oil (plus ½ teaspoon for the eggs)
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 Tablespoon crumbled cooked bacon
- ½ Tablespoon fresh green onions
- ¼ cup grated Mozzarella cheese (or any other cheese)
- salt, ground black pepper, to taste
- Prep all the ingredients so that they will be ready to go once you start cooking the hash browns.
- In a 10 inch nonstick skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the grated potatoes, pressing them down. Season with salt and ground black pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes on medium high heat, just until the underside of the potatoes softens and turns slightly golden.
- Turn the potatoes over to the other side. Season the other side with salt and ground black pepper.
- In another skillet, heat the remaining teaspoon of oil until shimmering, add the slightly beaten eggs (season with a pinch of salt and ground black pepper. Cook on low heat just until the eggs are scrambled but still halfway underdone.
- Spread the partially cooked eggs over half of the hash browns in the other skillet. Top with the crumbled bacon, green onions and grated cheese.
- Fold the other half of the hash brown layer over the filling. Cook until golden on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Serve immediately.