I had made waffles for breakfast. (Yeast-risen. 3/4 white flour, 1/8 whole wheat flour, 1/8 cornmeal. But that is enough waffle talk.)
Now it was time for lunch.
Would hash browns waffle?
As it turns out, yes and no.
Here is the key: Don't slice the potatoes, shred them.
Slicing produced limp potatoes with inadequate waffleization. The sliced potatoes did not cohere and showed few signs of being waffled. This was the case whether the potatoes were raw or parboiled.
But shredding produced waffled hash browns with a fantastic amount of crunch on the outside and tiny pockets of silky smoothness inside.
And it couldn't be easier.
1. Wash and peel the potatoes. Shred them and squeeze them dry with a towel. (This ensures that your potatoes brown nicely.)
2. In a mixing bowl, add the potatoes, followed by salt and pepper to taste.
3. Spread about a teaspoon of butter on the waffle iron. (A silicone pastry brush works well; neither you nor the brush will melt while you spread the butter around the extremely hot waffle iron, and any nonstick finish on your waffle iron will be spared.)
4. Pile the shredded potatoes into the waffle iron and close the lid.
5. After a few minutes, you may wish to squeeze down the lid a bit. Check the potatoes after 10 minutes. In my waffle iron on the medium heat setting, the potatoes showed golden-brown highlights after about 15 minutes. But yours will vary, possibly by quite a bit.
6. Carefully remove the potatoes from the waffle iron.
Serve them with grated cheese or sour cream.
You could also serve waffled hash browns with ketchup, alongside a waffleburger. But that takes serious commitment to the concept. And I would worry about you a little.
I used mine as the base for a fried egg, topped with shavings of three-year Gouda.
It took me about two minutes to clean my plate.
And, no, I did not waffle the egg. Not that one, anyway.