Loaded Idaho® Potato Bites
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- 1 cup vegetable oil, for frying
- 1½ cups panko Japanese breadcrumbs
- 1 large egg
- 2½ cups prepared Idaho® mashed potatoes kept at room temperature
- 3 slices of bacon cooked crisp and broken into pieces
- 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated
- 3 tablespoons parmesan, grated
- 2 tablespoons chives, finely chopped
- ½ tablespoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon Hungarian smoked paprika
- sea salt and ground pepper to taste
- In a large skillet over medium high heat, add the oil.
- While it is heating, lightly beat the egg in a shallow bowl.
- In another shallow bowl, add the panko breadcrumbs.
- In a third but larger bowl, combine the prepared mashed potatoes, cooked bacon pieces, cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, garlic, chives, paprika, salt and pepper.
- Using your hands mix the ingredients thoroughly and roll the mixture into 1-inch balls.
- Dip each ball into the egg mixture, get rid of any excess, dredge the ball in the panko breadcrumbs, and let the ball sit for a few minutes before adding to the oil.
- Gently place the ball to the hot oil with a slotted spoon. Plan to work in batches. Cook until golden and crispy all over, about 3 minutes.
- Transfer the ball using the slotted spoon bites paper towel-lined covered wire rack to drain. Serve immediately.
- To make quick and easy Idaho® mashed potatoes, peel and cube 3 pounds of Idaho® potatoes. Add them to a large pot of salted boiling salted water. Simmer uncovered for 12 minutes, or until potatoes are tender by fork. Drain. Return to the pot. Add 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter and 3/4 cup of whole milk. Using a hand held mixer, break the potatoes up by using the low speed, blending until creamy but not runny. Season with salt and pepper to taste.