Wednesday, May 8, 2013

My Hassle with Hasselback Potatoes


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?

32 comments:

  1. I've made them -- a lot and I adore them -- but alas, mine doesn't have bacon or anything but oil/butter and panko on top and they are wonderful. I found another recipe (not called hasselback but the same thing) that had herb leaves stuck here and there in the slices. I tried those too and they were good!

    But yours looks amazing with all that STUFF!

    ReplyDelete
  2. They look/sound yummy, but have not made them. Think I will just stick with a loaded baked potato. :D
    Enjoy your evening.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who knew that a potato could make me break a sweat?! Puff pastry, I can understand. Hope you have a good evening, too.

      Delete
  3. Lol - cook's illustrated has a really great version... and they turn out perfectly.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I tried a similar recipe years ago (I think it was BH&G) with a potato sliced like this. I had a quite the time trying to slice, butter and season. The wedges stuck together while baking. I ended up just chopping up the cooked potatoes, mixing in a little cheese, onion and sour cream and having a potato casserole. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I'm going to try the recipe that Patricia mentioned. But if it defeats me, that's it. :-)

      Delete
  5. wow, i made no hassel hasselbacks because i never added anything, who knew...! i am not a potato person to begin with so i was impressed i even made one. i nuked mine first then finished them off in the oven t speed up the process.

    i am not a bacon person either, so hold on to your horses when i tell you i buy precooked bacon at sam's club, it has a shelf life like decades, just throw in a cupboard and wait until doomsday you are all set ;-) anyway, those precooked numbers could easily glide right in an unbuttered tater and sill be perfect. but i bet real bacon people would not be thrilled with that idea...

    i think yours looks terrific, another fabulous shot and what a great idea to stuff them~ it was a perfect party favor at the table, like edible slinkies~

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh, would I love to be eating this for dinner tonight! How quickly could I get to Rattlebridge Farm from TX? Or better yet, do you deliver? Thanks for sharing this. It's new to me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let me know how your recipe turns out!

      Delete
  7. I can honestly say that I have never made Hasselback Potatoes. But yours look really good. Myself, I like good old mashed potatoes. Will be joining you this Friday.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I've always wanted to try them, but they seem so labor intensive ... tasty, but a lot of faff ... yours do look dreamy, though!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I've sliced mine like this before and baked them. Added the stuff after they are done, pre-cooked the bacon first of course, and popped them back in the oven for about 5-10 min. to bubble up. Hubby loves them.
    All the steps for the H.Potatoes is out for this lazy/shortcut cook.

    Jake's a Girl

    ReplyDelete
  10. You made me laugh talking about making these taters. They sure looked yummy.

    Been meaning to ask about the delicious looking cake you posted for last weeks Foodie Friday, was it store bought and embellished at home or did you make it from scratch? it made my mouth water just looking at it. Could you share the recipe please or how you made the frosting look so fluffy.

    Thanks a bunch.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I emailed you, but yes, it was a store-bought pound cake (butter pecan) from Publix. I used canned cream cheese icing and fresh raspberries. I put a child's juice glass into the cake's center hole, added water and flowers. I can't remember what I did to make the icing swirl. I used a plain knife and just sort of let it move. Like music.

      Delete
  11. Looks delicious, ML! I make these often...just put them between two chopsticks and slice away...never had them fall apart.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Michael,
    I have not tried hasselback potatoes this way. I have, however, tried Yukon Gold sliced this way with EVOO and rosemary. I used a recipe from Ina Garten for New Year's Day dinner. Everyone really enjoyed them. For prep, I placed the potatoes in a big spoon to slice them. It helped me slice them to the right depth without cutting through.
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll try that, thanks! I just saw a photo on Pinterest, and the potatoes had been sliced maybe 1/8" thick. Mine were way too fat and inflexible. That was one problem. I'll look up Ina's recipe--love her dearly.

      Delete
  13. Thanks for the laugh. I have made these twice. I used chopsticks and I have placed them in a wooden spoon. I got the slicing part down, but they seem too starchy in the middle. I heard you can parboil, but that sounds like too much work for me. Let us know if you find a better way. I don't mind the work if I get superior results, but for now it is too much work.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I haven't made these yet, and I must say they look DELICIOUS !!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I have also planned on making these sometime. Thanks for this post. No point in me even attempting them.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I make them all the time but not with bacon. I slice them when they are raw as thinly as I have patience for and drizzle with lots of olive oil and melted butter, sea salt, pepper and freshly shaved Parmesan. Roast at 400 about an hour or longer until golden and crispy, basting every 20 min or so and adding more Parm. TDF, you know, to die for! I agree that stuffed potatoes are much easier if you are going to add a lot of ingredients...I am sort of a plain crispy potato girl...
    Jenna

    ReplyDelete
  17. Never made them ... but they sure look tasty! :)

    ReplyDelete
  18. Tried these last week and the potatoes NEVER cooked!! :( Only put butter on every few so I guess that may be a problem too. But should they really take LONGER than a baked potatoes?
    Not sure I'll try again.
    Lisa

    ReplyDelete
  19. Potatoes are my kryptonite, I can skip the rib roast and the bread! I have a version pinned too but never made them. Still chuckling at your commentary...they look divine and impressive, hassle-ridden or not :)

    ReplyDelete
  20. I think I have found what I'd like for my birthday dinner! Not sure I can wait though, it is December 24! Loved reading about your Hasselback potatoes - they look amazing! I appreciate you two hosting!
    Kathy

    ReplyDelete