Thursday, October 12, 2006

O'Brien Potatoes

From: Culinary Institute of America Breakfasts & Brunches

6 large white or red potatoes
1 1/2 tsp salt, divided use
4 bacon strips, chopped
2 Tbsp water
3/4 C medium-diced onion
3/4 C medium-diced red pepper
3/4 C medium-diced green pepper
2 Tbsp minced or sliced chives or scallions
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Scrub and peel the potatoes. Put them in a large pot with enough cold water to completely submerge them. Place the pot over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Add 1 teaspoon salt to the water and cook the potatoes until you can easily insert a skewer or paring knife about halfway into the potatoes, about 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes and return them to the pot. Cook them over low heat until they stop giving off steam, about 5 minutes.
Remove the potatoes from the pot. As soon as they are cool enough to handle, cut into medium dice. Set aside.
Heat a large skillet over low heat. Add the chopped bacon and water and cook slowly until the bacon is crisp and the fat is melted. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside.
Increase the heat under the skillet to medium. Add the onion and saute, stirring frequently, until tender and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the peppers and continue to saute until very hot and tender, another 3 minutes. Lift the vegetables from the pan with a slotted spoon, letting the fat drain back into the pan, and combine with the reserved bacon.
Increase the heat under the skillet to medium-high. Add the diced potatoes; they should be in a single layer, so work in batches if necessary. Cook until the potatoes are browned on the exterior and very tender on the interior, turning the potatoes occasionally with a spatula, about 10-12 minutes. Transfer to a bowl or platter and keep warm while cooking the remaining potatoes. Stir in the sauteed vegetables and bacon with the chives or scallions. Adjust the seasoning with the remaining salt and the pepper and serve while very hot.

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