Some of us mere mortals in the kitchen don't have the luxury of a cast iron skillet...so is there a way to make perfect pan potatoes without one?
In this 'ible, we will discover how to use a simple skillet (even a plain Jane Teflon one) to get potatoes that are softer on the inside, and have that delectable crispiness on the outside! Let's begin...
Step 1: What You'll Need...
This is the easiest and fastest way to make amazing pan potatoes.
Here's what you'll need:
Potatoes (works for any kind: Russet, sweet, yellow, or red potatoes)
Seasonings of your choice
Depending on how many potatoes you are cutting, this could take about 10-15 minutes. I will show you a tip on the next step for dicing potatoes quickly and efficiently.
Step 2: Dice the Potatoes
Here's a quick and easy way I use to dice up potatoes:
1. Slice the potato.
2. Stack the slices into manageable groups, then slice down the entire stack. You can use your fingers to hold the sides of each stack if the stacks start to fall over when you cut.
3. Turn the potato horizontally (so the lines now face side to side) and slice again. VOILA! You have diced potatoes! :)
Step 3: Heat Your Skillet & Oil
1. Put enough oil in the skillet to make a single layer over the entire skillet base.
2. Add your diced potatoes. I usually just add the potatoes to an oiled skillet as I cut them. (NOTE: Don't worry if your potatoes look pink when you add them. This just means the cut potato sides were exposed to air. They will lose the pink color as they cook.)
3. Immediately after you've finished adding all the potatoes to the oiled skillet, use your spatula to mix the potatoes from the bottom-up and from the edges of the pan toward the center. Basically, you are just wanting to make sure each piece of potato is covered with oil.
4. Put the skillet on the stove and turn the temperature to MEDIUM. It's important that it stays on MEDIUM the entire time! You will see why in the following step.
5. COVER the skillet. (This also is extremely important and will be explained why in the next step.)
NOTE: We will NOT be seasoning the potatoes right now. What usually happens when you season potatoes in the beginning is the flavor dies out as it cooks, yet the sodium (etc) remains. So you add more seasoning at the end to make it taste more flavorful, but it's doubling the sodium content (not good)! Therefore, we will add seasonings in a later step.
Step 4: Cooking the Potatoes to Perfection
1. After a couple of minutes, you will hear the potatoes sizzling. Carefully take the cover off and mix the potatoes.
2. Return the cover to the skillet. Let it cook on Medium heat for 8-10 minutes. (Medium heat will keep your potatoes from having burnt edges with hard middles, and it will keep them from being too soggy/soft without crispy edges. With Medium heat, they'll always be just right!)
3. Remove the cover. Mix the potatoes again. And return the cover. (You will notice when you take the lid off, that there's condensation on it. This is a good thing! The lid is keeping the moisture in so the potatoes get soft in the middle. We will crisp the outside edges at the end.)
4. Cook covered for another 2-5 minutes. The potatoes should start to fall apart a bit when they've been cooked all the way through.
5. When this happens (the potatoes are soft), remove the cover completely and finish cooking the potatoes without it. (This will allow the potatoes to get deliciously crispy edges.)
6. Season your potatoes now, and give them a little flip. NOTE: We are NOT "mixing" the potatoes anymore, or they will start to fall apart. You will "flip" the potatoes from here on out, like you'd flip a pancake over. Work it a section at a time in this manner until all the potatoes have been flipped. You will notice when you flip them, the underside edges that were previously down are now crispy and golden brown.
7. Let the potatoes continue to cook on Medium heat just about 2-5 minutes longer (depending on how dark/burnt or light/soft you want them).
-Salt and Pepper
-Garlic and Rosemary
-Garlic Powder, Salt, and Paprika (this is AMAZING on sweet potatoes!)
-Seasoned salt, green onions, and Red Hot (my personal favorite)...sometimes with a hint of lime juice.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE POTATO SEASONING? LET US KNOW BELOW! :)
Step 5: Plate and Enjoy!
Satisfy your comfort food craving anytime--day or night!
Plate 'em hot and enjoy :)