bacon taters

Have you all recovered from your St. Patrick’s Day revelry? I’m not gung-ho about all that, so I thought I could “celebrate” in another way: by making some sort of Irish food staple and sharing it with friends; unfortunately, I discovered I don’t actually like many Irish dishes. Cabbage? Boiled sausage? Skirts and kidneys? I’ll pass. (I did get a laugh researching Irish food, though; the names of this stuff are ridiculous! Goody? BlaaBrown lemonade??)

I didn't take a photo of the finished product, so here's a nondescript potato because you probably don't know what one looks like.

The only Irish staple I’m a fan of is the potato. I know I’m a day late, but I’m hooking you up with an incredibly delicious way to use any leftover potatoes you might have around in wake of Everyone-Pretending-To-Be-Irish-Day: bacon roasted potatoes (adapted from Noob Cook).

The recipe calls for baby potatoes, but you could use any kind. (I used red.) You’ll first make bacon on the stove (and don’t use that pre-cooked stuff or you’ll miss out on a ton of flavor), and then use the residual bacon grease to prepare the potatoes. Sounds healthy, right?

♦8 slices of bacon (6 if using thick-cut bacon)
8 small potatoes — baby/red (4 if using Russet potatoes)
5 cloves of garlic
plenty of sea salt and black pepper

Partially boil potatoes in a pot of water for about 10 minutes. (Poke with a fork and make sure they’re relatively soft before removing from water.) While they’re boiling, cook bacon in frying pan until crisp. While bacon is cooling, cut softened potatoes into quarters (or the size of your liking). Place chunks in a baking dish, and cover with leftover bacon oil. Add garlic, plus generous amounts of sea salt and black pepper. Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. Top with crumbled bacon bits.

Total time? 15 minutes prep, 20 minutes cook.
Cost? $1 potatoes, $3 bacon.
Overall success relative to expectations? 7 out of 10. My expectations going in weren’t very high, considering it’s just potatoes and bacon, but the use of the residual grease made a world of difference. I took off points for the fact that I employed a tad too much (use your best judgment) and the potatoes were a little greasy for my taste, but if you pair these with a healthy entrée, you’ll be fiiiine. Word of advice: Make sure to either distribute the entire lot in first helpings or keep the dish warm while you’re eating; as soon as these get cold, the congealed bacon grease makes them inedible.

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