German Cottage Potatoes Bring New Flavor To Eggs And Bacon

If you're looking for something to add to your breakfast rotation, German cottage potatoes can elevate your eggs and bacon, bringing hearty, flavor-packed heaven to this morning staple. German cottage potatoes, called Bratkartoffeln in German, are basically German fried potatoes. But what makes these potatoes so special is their crispy edges, soft potatoey centers, and the addition of two key ingredients — diced onions and crispy fried fatty bacon, leaving these taters teeming with tastiness and full of savory-salty umami goodness.

Bratkartoffeln are often used as a side dish for meals at any time of day. At dinner, they play nicely with German sausages such as bratwurst, alongside crispy Schnitzel topped with a hearty mushroom gravy (Jägerschnitzel,)or simply with classic Schnitzel finished with a squeeze of lemon. Also known as German fries, the yummy potatoes really shine when used in place of french fries, alongside a burger with all the trimmings. But they are particularly perfect in place of your standard home fries at breakfast, cuddled up with some fried eggs or an omelet and a couple of slices of bacon or sausage.

How make Bratkartoffeln (or German potatoes)

Typically thinly sliced into coin shapes (about a quarter of an inch thick) and fried until crispy in a pan on the stovetop, German cottage potatoes are often made by either parboiling the potatoes, or using potatoes boiledthe previous day. Being in the fridge overnight makes them easier to slice. Next, diced yellow onions are sautéed in oil until translucent and slightly browned, with just a little caramelization along the edges. Chopped bacon is also cooked until crisp — the German variety is called bauchspeck, but any thick-cut bacon will do. Then the potato coins are fried in the oil and mixed with the onions and bacon, until crisp. 

You can use most types of potatoes to make cottage potatoes. While a starchy, floury potato such as russet can be scrummy in a pinch, using a semi-waxy, semi-starchy potato like Yukon gold brings a golden opportunity for both flavor and textural superiority with its soft buttery notes and ability to hold its shape when moving from parboiled to fried in this recipe. Common seasoning options for this dish start with salt and pepper, and can include marjoram, caraway, rosemary, and paprika. Occasionally, diced green peppers are also included.

And if you really want to zhuzh these taters up, try topping them with sour cream or a little Greek yogurt with some dill mixed in, a sprinkling of green onions, or even a small side of apple sauce. The results will be, as the Germans say, "himmlisch," (or heavenly).