Remember that time I told you how to make Sunday Morning Potatoes? The recipe, which isn’t really a recipe at all but a technique I learned from Marion Cunningham’s Breakfast Book, has become so popular here on Sunday mornings, it’s now a regular part of my repertoire. But last weekend I decided to shake things up by applying the same technique to a different sort of potato, a bright orange sweet potato. How would that work? (Drumroll)…
…turns out it works out very well!
No need for a formal recipe, just follow along with me.
Start by rendering some bacon, which you cut into lardons, in a cast iron skillet:
When they’re nice and crisp, remove them to a plate and see how much fat you have in there. You want a thin layer coating the pan so if you don’t have that, supplement with vegetable oil. Crank up the heat and, oh, while that bacon is rendering? Cut a sweet potato into cubes, no need to peel.
Now carefully add those cubed sweet potatoes to the hot hot hot oil (do that carefully) and sprinkle with salt.
You should hear a loud sizzle when you do that. Now just leave them there for a bit while you tidy up. If you’re going to poach an egg to put on top, get your water simmering in a separate pan.
After 5 minutes or so, do a flip and see how the potatoes are coming along.
If you look carefully at that picture you’ll see that they come along rather quickly because of the sugar in the sweet potato. So from this point forward, you should move them around every minute or so and sprinkle once again with salt. Your goal is to get everything crisp and caramelized and cooked all the way through without burning anything.
While this was happening, I decided to cut up an onion. When the potatoes reached the stage I wanted them to be at–crisp on the outside, soft on the inside (you have to taste to know)–I added the onion to the pan. A loud sizzle ensued.
Sprinkle with a little more salt and stir all around. Because the pan is so blisteringly hot, the onion will cook in no time. As soon as it’s pretty transparent you can turn off the heat, stir back in the reserved bacon and sprinkle everything with Aleppo pepper (a fruity pepper I learned about in Melissa Clark’s kitchen).
Now: bring on the green stuff! Just because I had this specific green stuff, I used it: scallions, mint and cilantro. Chop chop chop and after the potatoes have cooled down a bit, into the pan they go.
At this point you have my take on a Sweet Potato Hash and you can top it with whatever you want. In this particular case, I topped it with a poached egg and you might say, “Well aren’t you going to tell us how to poach an egg?”
No. I really can’t. Because I haven’t really mastered it yet. I tried the whirlpool technique, where you swirl a wooden spoon around the simmering water to start a whirlpool and slip the egg into that, but I had some issues. You don’t want to see the pictures.
But! I still got a few good poached eggs out of the process and here’s the finished dish (before I cut into the yolk):
It’s a pretty striking dish to start your day with and possibly the last breakfast I’ll have cooked in this current apartment. Now it’s time to start packing up and heading over to our new address. See you back here, all moved into the new place, next week. Have a great weekend.