¼ cup Avocado Oil
1 or 2 cloves Garlic, crushed
2. 5 pounds (about 6 cups) Red, Yellow, or Russet Potatoes, peeled and grated
1 tsp Salt
1 cup Yellow Onion, finely diced
1 cup Red Pepper, finely diced
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil two 14” pizza pans (if you only have one pizza pan or a single 12” skillet, you may want to roast these as two batches since they do best when not too crowded. You can also cook some and freeze the remainder as described below.) You do not need to peel the potatoes to make these. However, they will have an earthier taste if they are not peeled.
Pour the oil into a small bowl. Crush the garlic into the oil. Allow to set while preparing remaining ingredients. Grate potatoes then place in a bowl of water for 15 to 30 minutes.* Drain with a colander and rinse until water is clear. (Potatoes become gooey if not rinsed.) When most of the water has drained out of the colander, sprinkle in the salt and mix well into the grated potatoes. Let the potatoes drain while you dice the onion and red pepper. Mix them with the potatoes and allow the mixture to drain. Don’t rush this step, the less water in the veggies, the crispier the hash browns. (I usually walk away for 15 to 20 minutes while this is draining.) Use a potato ricer to squeeze as much water as possible from the potatoes. Place the potato mixture in a large bowl and add the garlic oil, mixing well.
Divide the potatoes between two pizza pans or skillets. Place them on the two middle racks in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes then stir. Continue baking until they reach a desired crispness, stirring every 10 minutes or so to keep them from burning. This could be 40 to 60 minutes, depending on how crispy you want them. I usually rotate the pizza pans between racks about half way through cooking for more uniform crispiness. Taste before adding more salt as these may be salty enough already.
VARIATION: STOVE TOP HASH BROWNS:
Follow above directions. Measure hash browns into skillet. Stir frequently to keep from burning. Do not put too many potatoes in the skillet at one time or they will not be as crisp. For 12” skillet I do not add more than 2 cups of uncooked hash brown mixture. You will probably need to add quite a bit of extra oil using this method.
Uncooked hash browns freeze well and do not discolor (due to oil coating.) You can freeze one cup portions in resealable bags or place thin layer of potatoes on cookie sheet lined with wax paper or a silicone sheet. When frozen, transfer to a freezer container. When ready to fry, remove as many servings as you want to make. Allow them to thaw then squeeze out liquid. Fry as previously stated.
Soaking raw potato slices in water for 15 to 30 minutes before frying or roasting helps reduce acrylamide formation during cooking. Acrylamide has been found to increase the risk of several types of cancer when given to lab animals (rats and mice) in their drinking water. The doses of acrylamide given in these studies have been as much as 1,000 to 10,000 times higher than the levels people might be exposed to in foods. It is hard to know if these results would apply to people as well, but it is wise to minimize human exposure to substances that cause cancer in animals.