Eggs Baked in Hash Browns (A Gordon Ramsay Recipe)
This week, we are boldly going where we haven’t dared go before. We're doing an in-depth review of a Gordon fucking Ramsay recipe! 😲
Now, we should probably say that this isn’t the first time that we’ve tried to make this piece of shit. Last fall we tried this recipe and failed miserably. It’s what we call The Egg Hash Brown Disaster of 2017. But, we were determined to learn from our mistakes and come back from our awful mess (well, Trevor was adamant that we try again, Brittany wanted to put the experience behind her).
Disclaimer: This blog was written Gordon Ramsay-style, meaning that there are quite a few cuss words in here. Read at your own risk. If you don’t like it, piss off.
This recipe is simple. But, we're only human, and sometimes we fuck up the most simple things, like a fucking hash brown flip (more on that later). Without further ado, let’s make Gordon Ramsay’s American-style breakfast.
To start, you’re going to want to shred both potatoes and onion. How much? Who the fuck knows — Gordon never gave quantities. We recommend shredding one medium sized onion and then shredding enough potato so you have one part onion to two parts potato. The kind of onion you use is a bit irrelevant (we used a yellow onion for the record) but the type of potato you use is important! Gordon recommends using waxy potatoes. What the hell does that mean? Waxy potatoes have a low starch content — look for warba potatoes, red potatoes, fingerling potatoes, or yukon golds (not the brown all-purpose potatoes).
🥔 Mediocre Tip: Have fun shredding your onion! Seriously, ours ended up being an onion paste. If you feel like shredding an onion is a bit fucked, you’re not alone — bust out the old trusty knife and get chopping. A fine dice will do. You’re going to want the onion pieces to be roughly the same size as the shredded potato.
Once you have your onion and potato prepared, mix them together in a bowl to create a more or less uniform pre-cooked hash brown. Gordon says that this is the point where you should add your spices and olive oil to the mixture. We think that this is absolutely batshit insane — if you season everything now, most of that seasoning will drain out with the liquid. We opted for salt only at this point. The goal is to draw out as much moisture from the mixture as possible and salt will help that process along. Place your mixture into a colander, the colander into a bowl, and salt this beast up. Then sit around for approximately 10 minutes to let as much of the water drain out as possible.
Once you’ve watched 1/3 of a Tanacon Documentary, return to your shrivelled, fucking gloopy mess of potato and onion and behold all of the liquid that’s already drained.
Start pressing and squeezing the potatoes and onion — you want to get as much of the liquid out as possible so your hash brown cooks crispy (soggy hash browns are gross). Squeeze until your forearms hurt, then squeeze some more. Once you’re satisfied that the potatoes and onion are dry, you can move on to frying them.
Gordon mentions in his video that you need to use a high heat to fry the hash browns. What he doesn’t quite stress is just how high the heat needs to be. Your pan needs to be hot — really hot. We’re talking almost as high as it can get. In fact this may be the first time that you’ve ever had a burner this high without boiling water. The reason why you need to have such a high heat, is that the hash brown needs to start caramelizing almost instantly in order to hold its shape. If it doesn’t caramelize and stick together, when you go to do the flip, everything is just going to fall apart.
🥔 Mediocre Tip: Use a non-stick frying pan that is oven safe, as you’ll need to transfer this to the oven later on in the recipe. If you don’t own one of those, that’s okay. Transferring the hash brown to a foil lined baking sheet will also do. Just make sure to preheat your oven and leave the sheet in there for 10-20 minutes in order for it to come up to temperature before placing the hash brown on it.
While it's cooking, add little flecks of butter around the outside of the hash brown in order to help promote caramelization of the onion. We’re already frying it in olive oil, why not add more fucking fat? This is an American style breakfast after all.
It’s time for the flip. Gordon Ramsay makes this shit look easy. Let us tell you honestly and openly: it is not fucking easy. Twice we have made this recipe, and twice our hash brown fell apart at this point. There are so many reasons why the flip can fail. You didn’t use a non stick pan, your hash brown layer wasn’t quite even enough, you didn’t use enough oil, the butter bath didn’t penetrate all the way down, you didn’t offer up the sacrificial lamb, etc. In any case, like the Sloppy Jessica its best to not overthink this and just go for it. Put a plate or a pan on top of your frying pan, flip, and transfer it back to the hot frying pan to crisp up the other side.
🥔 Mediocre Tip: If your hash brown falls apart like ours did (it will fall apart, just accept it now) then try to patch it up as best as you can. You’re going to continue to cook it in the pan for a bit, so it should stick together. If all else fails, the eggs will act like glue.
Once your hash brown is evenly cooked and crispy on each side, crack a few eggs on top and place it in the oven. Depending on how you like your eggs, your cook time will vary. We cooked our eggs in the oven for 15 minutes at 350°F because we’re weird and don’t like super runny egg yolks like everyone else (salmonella is dangerous yo).
While that’s in the oven, it’s time to cook the bacon! Gordon Ramsay doesn’t just fry his bacon in a pan and call it good he heats olive oil, salt, pepper, brown sugar, and butter in a pan before adding his bacon. Fry this until your desired level of crispiness and get ready to put it all together. (Don’t fucking burn it.)
Salty, smoky, sweet, bacon. Mmmm. Yes, your breakfast needs more fucking calories. There’s nothing like starting the day out bloated and with an elevated blood pressure.
Gordon Ramsay somehow manages to make plating this heart attack in a pan look effortless. The way his bacon is just oh so casually draped along the top and the delicate sprinkling of cayenne at the end makes this look like a restaurant dish. And not some greasy spoon diner dish, like an honest to god, upscale brunch dish. Ours, however, did not look that great. It looked like what you would find in a truckstop diner. But hey, we tried.
Our Mediocre Thoughts:
👨🍳 Trevor: I don’t know what to say about this dish really. It tasted fine. But my god was it a pain in the ass. Making a giant hash brown egg pizza thing is not quick. Breakfasts should be quick and simple. Not overly complicated and fussy. You don’t need to combine the ingredients into one thing. Just enjoy the eggs, bacon, and hash browns the way the good lord intended.
If you really feel the need to combine them all into one neat package, I suggest doing individual hash brown cakes. This makes everything more manageable, from the quantity of stuff to prep to the ease of slipping the hash brown. Make a bacon ring with your fried bacon and place it on top of the hash brown cake. Crack an egg inside. Put this in the oven and let it cook until the egg is done. Now you have a quick, simple, and Instagram-worthy breakfast that didn’t require you to flip a massive hash brown in a pan. Just sayin’.
👩🍳 Brittany: I love eating breakfast for supper (pancakes, waffles, eggs and toast, etc), so this recipe is going on my “make again” list. BUT — and that’s a big but — I probably wouldn’t go through the hassle of trying to make the perfectly flipped hash brown disc. You’re just going to cut it up into multiple servings anyways. As Trevor mentioned, making a bunch of small hash brown cakes is more manageable, or if you’re feeling Pinterest-y, you can press the hash brown mixture into muffin tins and use that as your vehicle for the eggs and bacon. (Just make sure you grease the pan really well first.)
Overall this experience made me realize how mediocre I really was at cooking — we absolutely failed the flip the first time (our hash browns were too moist and didn’t cook together nicely). The second time around, we almost had the perfect flip, if it wasn’t for a little bit in the center of the pan sticking a bit. Gordon Ramsay makes everything look easy! Don’t get me wrong, this is an incredibly simple recipe, but Gordon just does it with so much more refinement and finesse. We’ll get there, one day.
Our Final Review:
Taste: 3 eggs out of 5 🥚🥚🥚
Presentation: 5 potatoes out of 5 🥔🥔🥔🥔🥔
Affordability: 4 bacon strips out of 5 🥓🥓🥓🥓
Let’s be real here. This is just bacon, eggs, potatoes, and onion with a little bit of seasoning Don’t get us wrong, it tastes great, but it’s not mind-blowing. It’s simple, yet delicious, which is why we’re giving this breakfast a 3/5.
For presentation, we’re trolling a bit here. We’re pretty sure Gordon Ramsay would disapprove of our plating, but we had fun with it. Affordability wise, the bacon is the only thing that brings the price up — eggs, potatoes, and onion are relatively cheap.
So you’ve heard us bitch and moan about this recipe being hard — thanks for sticking around until the end! Want to see someone not cock it up? Watch Gordon Ramsay make his take on a classic American-style* breakfast.
*We’re not American and can’t confirm if this is legit American or not.