Nutrient Dense Hash Brown Recipe
The days are getting shorter, the leaves are turning, and we are slowing down the pace around the Culver house. Less action-packed summer mornings = better breakfasts, like hash browns!
Potatoes are a staple breakfast food that Colin and I missed for a long time for no reason. When we followed the Paleo diet we did not eat regular potatoes because we believed the myth that they are less nutrient dense and worse for blood sugar than sweet potatoes.
In reality the only benefit sweet potatoes have over the other varieties is that they are not nightshades. Unless you have an autoimmunity and avoid nightshades or are strictly avoiding carbs for therapeutic reasons you have this nutritionist’s permission to eat regular ‘ol russet potatoes.
Nutrient Density Of Potatoes
Russet potatoes are actually a rich source of folate, which has become such a critical nutrient. Many people carry genetic traits which make it difficult to use synthetic forms of folate, like folic acid, in the body. Its important to eat plenty of folate from natural sources.
Folate is necessary for energy production, detox functions and fertility health. It is considered the most important nutrient for proper development of the central nervous system and spinal chord of babies in utero. One serving of russet potato provides a whopping 33% of our daily value of folate! Russet potatoes are also high in Vitamin C and many other wonderful nutrients.
The Healthiest Way To Eat Potatoes
I hope you are as excited as I am about the humble potato! However, there are some guidelines to follow when eating potatoes. First and foremost, as with any carb, eat potatoes with a source of fat to slow the blood sugar response. Healthy fats will also help you absorb all of the vitamins and minerals in potatoes. Healthy fats for cooking with, as in this recipe, are animal fats from well raised animals and tropical fats like coconut oil. Canola oil and vegetable oil aren’t the healthiest options.
The reason I decided to share this recipe now is that even organic store bought hash browns are packaged with canola oil. Canola is not considered a good source of fat for many reasons. In this case it’s mainly because seed oils like canola and other “vegetable” oils are damaged by high heat cooking. This recipe uses grass fed butter as an appropriate substitute because it can tolerate the high heat required to put the “brown” in the hash brown. Butter also adds valuable fat soluble vitamins to the dish to increase the nutrient density.
I tried to nail down properly prepared hash browns for a couple of years. My main failure was that all the browned yumminess would stick to the pan. Then I learned that you have to soak the potatoes in cold water first. The soaking does some sort of magic and then no more sticking!
The Hash Brown Recipe:
Total Time: 20 minutes
- 3 medium organic russet potatoes (potatoes are a very chemical laden crop when grown conventionally)
- 2 TBSP unsalted grass fed butter
- 1 TSP Real Salt or other unrefined salt
- 1/4 TSP ground black pepper
- 1/8 TSP onion powder (sweeter) or garlic powder (savory)
Grate the potatoes with the skin still on. Place into a large bowl and cover with cool water. Let sit for at least five minutes. Strain them and place on several paper towels. Toll the towel into a burrito like shape to dry off the potatoes. The the butter in the skillet over medium, medium-high heat. Place the potatoes in the skillet and sprinkle the spices all over. Gently stir to mix the spices in. Pat the potatoes down to create a well compacted, even layer in the skillet. Cook 7-8 minutes or until well browned on one side. Flip the potatoes and cook another 7-8 minutes or until done. Serve warm.
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