Monday, October 15, 2018

The Best Breakfast Potatoes ... and a bushel of laughs

I will get to the recipe (you can see the potatoes at left in the photo above) in a moment, but first, a little background. 

During our recent trip to Elko, Nevada to visit family, one of the nicest blessings for me was the very rare opportunity to go out for breakfast with both of my daughters.  I'm so tickled that they thought of doing this.  It was a wonderful time, with conversation and laughter flowing freely.

Joanna, who lives in Elko, suggested McAdoo's, and it was a wonderful choice.  We all chose the breakfast croissant sandwich, and it was a fantastic choice, as it was filled with things like egg, bacon, greens, and avocado among others.  We also found that the potatoes that accompanied this sandwich were amazing!

We spent more than a few minutes trying to dissect the recipe -- but we also spent a great many minutes laughing hysterically.  Our server brought Joanna a bottle of ketchup to accompany her potatoes, and the problem started when the ketchup refused to leave the bottle.  (It was a brand new bottle.)  I think many of us have probably had a similar experience with new bottles of ketchup.  Usually a quick jab into the ketchup with a knife breaks the suction or whatever is holding the ketchup back. 

In this case, the knife maneuver did not work.  Worse, when Joanna attempted to remove the knife from the bottle, it would not come out.  No matter how much she worked at it, it would not leave the neck of the bottle.  Carrie then stepped in and held the bottle with both hands so Joanna could jiggle the knife with both hands.  Still no go. 

By this time, we were all laughing hard.  I wanted so badly to take a video with my Kindle, but two things held me back: I was shaking with laughter so couldn't have held it steady; and also I was pretty sure the knife was going to come out quickly, spattering ketchup everywhere, including my screen.

That didn't happen, however.  At this point, a rugged-looking young man seated near us had grasped the situation, and he signaled to Joanna to let him help.  She handed him the bottle and ... guess what?  He couldn't budge the knife either!  We had to return it to the counter like this:

Fast-forward to last week when we were having guests for brunch and I wanted some sort of easy potato dish to accompany an egg bake.  I was looking through my Gooseberry Patch fall cookbooks.  In Flavors of Fall, I came upon a recipe called Golden Parmesan Potatoes and decided to try it.  I had to adapt it a bit anyway to meet a dietary need, but that adaptation turned out to be just the ticket to potatoes that tasted very much like those we had at McAdoo's.  (I also cut the recipe in half to make a smaller amount, so that is how I will write it.  If you need a larger quantity, just double the recipe and use a 13 x 9-inch pan.)

I made these again for a supper guest the same night.  Absolutely delicious and so easy!

2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tablespoons Italian seasoned bread crumbs (I used gluten-free)
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
3 medium potatoes (or 6 small ones) scrubbed, rinsed and cubed
3 Tablespoons butter or olive oil

Heat oven to 375º.

Combine the cheese, crumbs, salt and pepper in a gallon size zip-top plastic bag.  As you prepare the potatoes, put the cubes right into the bag of crumbs.  When all the potatoes are in the bag, seal it and shake very well to coat the potato cubes with the crumb mixture.

Coat the bottom of a 9-inch square pan (I recommend non-stick metal) with either butter or olive oil.  Add potatoes and any remaining crumbs.

Bake at 375º for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring every 20 minutes or so.  Serves 3 or 4 generously.

We loved this and I hope that you will, too!  No ketchup required.


  1. What cute daughters! What fun to go out for of my all-time favorite things to do. Oh I was anticipating the ketchup all over the place...glad that didn’t happen! The potato recipe sounds delicious.

    1. They are cute, aren't they? Hard to believe Joanna is pushing 40 and is a mother of six; Carrie is 41 and a mom of four.

      Yes, this was a special treat for all of us and a memory-maker as well. And now that I've been able to create a reasonable facsimile of those potatoes, we can all enjoy them at our respective homes!

  2. The potato recipe sounds yummy. I am thinking I will make those soon!
    Your daughters are lovely and I am glad that you got to spend some fun time together.

    1. I couldn't believe how easy that potato recipe turned out to be! One would want to garnish it with freshly shaved Parmesan to make it more like the restaurant version.

      They are lovely girls indeed and it had been three years since they had been together. High time for a breakfast date!

  3. The potatoes look yummy!

    1. They really are, Barbara, and so easy to make!

  4. Those sound really good and so easy to do. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. I hope you enjoy the recipe if you try it, Terri! It is a keeper for sure.

  5. That's hilarious about the ketchup bottle!!!
    What good fortune to visit you this evening as we are taking breakfast for dinner over to Quadville tomorrow when we do the after school pick up run. The quads requested breakfast and I have just boiled up a pan of potatoes that I was going to slice up and fry with slided onions in bacon fat. However, now that I have your recipe - I'm going to try my hand at making those instead. Although my poatatoes are already cooked, I bet it will still work!

    1. I bet it will still work too, Linda. It might not take as long to cook.

      When we were tasting the potatoes at the restaurant, Joanna thought they might have been boiled prior to baking (or frying -- at that point we couldn't tell, but now I'm pretty sure they were baked). Hope you and the quads enjoy them with your other breakfast foods!


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