For the past few months, I've been looking at Pinterest photos of a sublime Swedish side dish called Hasselback potatoes. How hard can this be? I asked myself.
The answer is: Hard.
Bandwidth concurred as he watched me trying to insert greasy, melty bacon wedges into a potato's delicate accordion pleats. "Which recipe did you use?" he asked.
Didn't use one, I said. I just eyeballed some pictures on Pinterest. I'd rubbed olive oil on the skins, then coated each tater with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Next, I cooked the potatoes for 30 minutes so they'd be easier to cut. But maybe I'd cooked them too long, or else I'd cut the slices too
deeply, because the bacon just wasn't fitting into the pleats. (And the center cut bacon was 99% fat, which didn't help.)
Bandy whipped out his iPhone and found a recipe. "Did you butter the pleats before you added the bacon?" he asked.
You mean, like, butter them INDIVIDUALLY? Who has the time? I've got a rib roast on the grill and bread in the oven.
No prob, I said. I'll just melt some butter and pour it over the pleats.
Bandy snorted when another potato fell apart. "If only your publisher could see you now," he said.
"Get me a toothpick," I said, trying to decide if I wanted to skewer the potato or my son.
"Chill," he said. "You should've frozen the bacon."
Yeah, I could totally see how that would help. When it comes to cooking, or just about
anything, hindsight has 20/20 vision.
To make matters worse, when I cooked the potatoes a second time, I didn't bake them long enough, and Dr. Will pronounced them DOA.
Aside from that, I thought they tasted like loaded baked potatoes. But neatly sliced. To be honest, loaded spuds are lots easier. My no-recipe recipe had, like, 5 steps.
After I cleared the table (carefully saving the uneaten potatoes--they'll make great hashbrowns), I
Googled Hasselback Potatoes. I found a Food Network recipe HERE. Yeah, frozen bacon
would have helped. But it will only help so much if you are an exhausted cook. And for me, well, how can I stuff bacon into itty, fragile wedges? I can barely type text messages. It's a fat-finger thing.
Have you made Hasselback potatoes? Were they truly a hassle or easy?