Spicy Cheddar Tater Tots

I saw an episode of Ten Dollar Dinners on Food Network a while back.  Host Melissa D'Arabian made sweet potato tater tots.  I hadn't really ever seen anyone attempt tater tots before, so I thought it was pretty cool.  Then, back in March, I went to HB Burger, in New York City with all my best friends.  (Check out the review here.)  After arriving and browsing the menu, a few people opted for the Jalapeno and Bacon Tater Tots, and they were SO GOOD.  So! These little homemade bites of goodness are a play on that, sans bacon.  I watched the methods Melissa used on her show, and incorporated the flavors I found in the tots at HB Burger, and came up with what you'll see here!  Enjoy ;-)

What You'll Need:
  • 6-7 Russet potatoes
  • 1/4 cup minced jalapeños
  • 1/2 cup cheddar jack cheese, either shredded or diced very small (I diced)
  • 1 tbsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 egg
  • 4 cups vegetable oil, for frying

1.  Peel the potatoes and shred with cheese grater - you will want the consistency and size of shredded breakfast potatoes. Using two clean kitchen towels, or a few layers of strong paper towels, squeeze as much water and moisture out of the potatoes as you can. The dryer the better. 

2.  In a large mixing bowl, mix shredded potatoes, and the next 8 ingredients until well incorporated. It should be quite sticky. 

3.  Heat your oil in a frying pan or cast iron skillet. When your oil is hot (throw a small piece of potato shred in the pan... if it sizzles, your oil is ready), drop 1-ounce balls of your potato mix into the oil and fry over medium heat, turning only once.  The potatoes will brown on all sides and the cheese will just melt perfectly.  Remove from pan and lay on a paper-towel lined dish.  Sprinkle with a touch of salt while they are still hot, and enjoy!

Serve with sour cream and onion dip!  Mix 4 oz. of sour cream, 
1 tbsp. onion powder, 1 tbsp. chives, salt and pepper.  Sprinkle with chives.


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