Smashed potatoes: it’s like a baked potato had a head on collision with a fist, fell into a hot oiled skillet, and ended up being immensely more interesting than it was originally meant to be. Or we could say it was a needed makeover; when you get tired of eating loaded baked potatoes, you could beat it up, fry it up, and chomp it up.
I’d picked up a little brown bag with a handle filled with small new potatoes from the grocery. I was thinking of making either mini potato salad filled potatoes or finding a new way to roast them. My P.S. said we should just grill them and I said it would be a perfect time to grill, smash, and fry them to see how that tasted. I told him it was trendy. That was probably a wrong choice of words. He hates to be trendy or something.
Once the potatoes were grilled, my now grumpy P.S. was making noises that he thought this was way too much work. I was dicing up veg for a salad and asked what was work about smashing and throwing them into a heated skillet with a little oil? He grudgingly did it and stood watching them, unimpressed. I suggested he take his adult beverage out to sit and watch his grill cook his marinated chicken breasts, and he disappeared in that direction fast. Some days…
I flipped the potatoes when they were browned on the first side, then plated them with the chicken and salad when they were browned on the second side. Pretty good timing, for being a last minute idea! I serve them with a dollop of sour cream I’d mixed with some chopped dill, and we had dinner.
Good? Well yeah, but as exciting as “smashed potatoes” sounds, they really are simply a different size of fried potatoes. This is nothing radically different, no re-invention of the wheel; it’s fried potatoes. Dipped in sour cream. Our only noticeable difference is that in using the new potatoes, they have a different, creamier texture when cooked than regular red potatoes do. In my mind, I didn’t think that was a plus. I’d have rather had a firmer potato to chew and dip.
So besides the mushier insides, the outsides were a flavorful, deliciously caramelized brown color. But really, I could have had even more of that effect by simply dicing the potatoes and cooking them totally in a skillet from raw to ready to eat. Interesting idea, just not worth the effort to go out of the way to “smash”. Another thing I can cross of my bucket list, however.
Small potatoes in quantity of your choice (I used about 8 small ones)
2 tablespoons oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Clean potatoes and oven bake or grill until almost done. Set on cutting board and smash to flatted with your hand, a meat mallet, or even a plate.
Heat a skillet on medium-high heat with 2 tablespoons of oil. Place potatoes in the pan and sear each side until golden brown.