Eric and I have very different ideas about how hashbrowns should be cooked. He likes his crispy to the point I would say they were too done. I like mine crispy here and there but soft and seasoned overall. So, after many times of cooking hashbrowns, trying different cooking styles, times, & with varied results, I had for the most part given up on cooking hashbrowns at home.
Then came pinterest. I have learned SO much. You never know what you might learn from a random post. IN this case, someone suggested cooking hashbrowns in the waffle iron. "DO WHAT?" I said, probably out loud, and I probably woke up one or more of the three dogs in the process. Regardless, I was intrigued.
So, I did what I do best, I googled it!!
What I found indicated, yes, you can use your waffle iron for many other things than waffles. I suppose that might be a 'duh', but I had never thought about it!
I thought it was worth a try, so I pulled out the old waffle iron. For the record, mine is a basic wal-mart waffle iron, was part of my 'Hope Chest' things, and still works fine. It is NOT a belgium waffle iron, just FYI. I would think the same rules would apply, but I personally have not tried it.
Unlike other blog posts, I don't think there will need to be a 'recipe' at the bottom, all this needs are hashbrowns, butter, salt, pepper and cooking spray.
Here is what I did:
Thaw the hasbrowns in a mixing bowl sitting in the kitchen sink, which I had filled about half full of very hot water. I suppose there are other ways to thaw frozen hashbrowns. Thaw them in whatever way you prefer. It wont take long, maybe 20 min. Mine might not have even been fully thawed, it still worked. Dust with salt and pepper, toss potatoes to coat.
Heat up the waffle maker. Melt about 2TB butter in a small dish. I did not melt mine fully, just made it really soft. I have a silicone pastry brush, and I brushed the top and bottom of the waffle maker with the butter and then sprayed it with the cooking spray, which may or may not be necessary. I figured it couldnt hurt! :)
Use about 1/2 C hashbrowns (this is variable!) per 'waffle'. If your waffle iron is bigger than mine, then it may take more. I used tongs and set a small amount of hashbrowns around the bottom of the waffle iron and when it looked full, I called that good. Make a thinner layer if you like your hashbrowns crispy like Eric, or a thicker layer if you like crispy on the outside and soft in the middle.
Cooking time is about 10 min. Longer for crispier, cook til they suit you. I lift Eric's cripy ones off and put them on about 300 in the convection oven for about 5 min, with a slice of cheese on top.
They are a hit around here and super easy!! Butter waffle iron and spray between 'waffles'.