Monday, June 28, 2010

Franks and onions with homemade tater tots

When I was growing up (in a family of seven with not much money) we were served very cost-conscious meals. One favorite of all of us was fried baloney and onions on mashed potatoes. So I’ve deconstructed it for today’s post.

Why would a person want to make homemade tater tots? Just to prove it could be done. I noted a while back that Jenn ( often made tater tots and I started thinking about them. My first attempt was a total disaster. But Thomas Edison didn’t give up after his first light bulb. (Incidentally, I went to Thomas Alva Edison Jr. / Sr. High School back before many of you were born.)

This was a real EUREKA! moment, especially when Peter came home just after I pulled them out of the oven and tasted one. He doesn’t mince words and said he’d be glad to have them as a side dish any time. Even serve them to guests.

A word about your broiler. Most will cycle on and off if the door is closed. I recommend pre-heating for 5 minutes with the door closed but that the cooking time be done with the door ajar (I guess most ovens have a spot where the door stays open 4 or 5 inches). This does allow heat to escape into your kitchen, but it’s crucial to the success of these little miracles.

As for the franks and onions part, just caramelize the onions over medium-high heat (6 on my electric ranges 1-10 dial), about 20 minutes. Toss in the dogs when you put the flipped over tots in for their last 5 minutes. I turned off the burner and let the dogs warm up with the residual heat.

Tater Tots in a Trice (makes about 25)
1 package Simply Potatoes hash browns
¼ cup lightly beaten egg white (or egg whites in a box from the store)
2 heaping tbsp corn starch
¼ cup olive oil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Preheat broiler and place a rack in the second slot from the top.

Toss all the dry ingredients with the potatoes in a bowl until well-incorporated. Then add egg and oil and toss to incorporate. I used a napkin ring to mold the tots, and an upside down caper jar to press them into shape. The lid of the jar was the perfect size for the napkin ring.

Lubricate a baking sheet very thoroughly (with sides or else the tots will slide off after flipping) with cooking spray. Place the tots on it and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Then broil 10 minutes, rotating the pan after 5. Turn them over and broil another 5 minutes until nicely browned. Eat.


Linda said...

I have never made my own tater tots before. I am going to have to give your recipe a try!

Andrea said...

OOh homemade tater tots!! I can't wait to try these :) Nicely done Stephen, they look great! Hot dogs and tots, even my 3 yr old would enjoy that dinner :)

Jenn said...

There they are!! They look fantastic Stephen! YAY!! Congrats on getting them to turn out so well. I've got them on my menu for Thursday night...we'll see if I can recreate them as well! And the Franks and onions... YUM! What a great meal to bring back childhood memories!

Tonia @Chic Modern Vintage said...

Ok first let me say that, these dishes look yummie! Homemade tater tots, I must try these. I'm a new follower and glad that I found you via TTA. Stop by to see me sometime soon.

Erin Wallace said...

This sounds like my kinda meal!

Following from TTA - hope to see you at Dropped Stitches!

xo Erin

Jenn said...

Psst...check out my extra post for the day...towards the bottom, you'll see your name :)

Jennifer Sikora said...

Hi! Found your blog through Jen's Food Journey! I am already sold and have added you so I can keep up with these yummy recipes you post! You should come check out my recipe archive as well!


Genesis Davies said...

It's also handy to make your own for those of us not in a culture where you can actually buy tater tots. :D This looks like a very kid friendly meal.

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