Serious Eats: Recipes

Dinner Tonight: Paprika-Spiked Home Fries with Poached Egg

"The more stirring, the less brown. And brown is the whole point."

Because sometimes, this is all I want to eat for dinner, home fries. And I say there's nothing wrong with that. Deeply crisp, creamy chunks of potato seared in butter; sticky caramelized onions hiding under each bite; a dusting of smoky paprika and black pepper. And to bring a little protein to the party, why not a poached egg and its flowing, unctuous egg yolk? Nature's free sauce.

The secret to home fries depends on who you ask. All said, I'm in the precook camp—parboiled or microwaved—and I always make sure to use Yukon Gold or another firm, waxy potato so they don't fall apart. I recently read about cooking the onions separately so they don't interfere with the whole purpose of breakfast potatoes: the crud. Don't mess with the crud. And speaking of crud, one other secret. Walk away. Don't touch those potatoes. Leave the kitchen if you have to. The more stirring, the less brown. And brown is the whole point.

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