Were you wondering what I did with the excess of potatoes I scooped from these Cheesy Bacon Potato Skins? I wouldn't blame you. You can set your mind at ease knowing that I found use of the extra pulp and made these tater tots. How could I throw out perfectly good potatoes when I knew there was some way to use it up? These tots are perfect! (Anyone thinking Napolean Dynamite yet?)
When I decided to make these, I thought using the method for the Buffalo Chicken Bites was the way to go. Thank goodness I only tried it out on 2 tots to begin with, because the result what not the taste I was going for. The crushed Corn Flakes breading somehow became stale in the baking process (maybe something to do with the potatoes affect on the cereal).
In my second attempt, I tried using regular store-bought bread crumbs. But, while making these trial versions, it dawned on me. I needed to use crushed potato chips! I didn't have regular potato chips on hand, but I did have these new Pop Chips in my pantry. They were just what I needed to make these tater tots at their best! Although regular potato chips would probably be just as good, I'll always use the Pop Chips since they are not full of grease, making the tots a tiny bit healthier. (This is not a formal endorsement for Pop Chips, although I do highly recommend these tasty little treats!)
Even though these tater tots are baked in the oven and not dunked in the deep fryer, they are perfectly crispy. It really felt good to not only use up the cooked potatoes, but to know I was eating healthier tots! Win, win!
**Recipe updated 10/11/10
Oven Baked Tater Tots
6 Russet Potatoes, peeled and diced
¼ cup milk
1 cup flour
2-3 eggs, beaten
2 cups crushed Pop Chips
Preheat oven to 400˚F.
Boil potatoes in a large pot until barely fork tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and return to pot.
Gradually add the milk and mash the potatoes with a potato masher until mashed, but still lumpy. You might not need to use up all the milk. It is important to keep the potatoes lumpy and a little dry so it is not so messy to roll into balls.
Separate the eggs, flour and potato chips in three bowls; set aside.
Form the potato mixture into 1-inch balls and place on wax or parchment paper. Roll each ball first into the bowl of flour, then the egg and finishing with the chips. Once coated, form the balls into the tots formation. Place on baking sheet.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until crispy and golden brown.
Source: Pennies Original