After my first attempt at tater tots, I looked around to see if there was agreement on tater tot recipe and process (Food Network, Smitten Kitchen, NYTimes, Bittman, @foodlab). Thanks to my attention span being that of middle schooler, I found consensus, for latkes. The gist: raw potato (1 lb), shredded and squeezed of its residual moisture, shredded onion (ca 1/2 small), 1-4 T flour, 1 egg, salt and pepper, and a trace of baking powder. Mix lightly and fry patty in oil..
I played with this for several mornings in a row. I'd shred a potato (yukon or russet) rinse the shreds, then press them in a potato ricer, add the other stuff and then fry. Usually the texture was off, if they were thick pancakes, the inside was gluey, maybe too much egg and/or flour. And why did I rinse them before pressing? That part isn't in a single prep, nixed that.
While my attempts were hardly exhaustive or even systematic, I had a nice run and decided to scribble it down here as a starting place. It's pretty much identical to Smitten Kitchen's only I recorded more precise measurement and used a potato ricer to squeeze the potato/onion shreds. Unlike SmittenKitchen's prep, this more tedious version should earn me a trickle of traffic and virtually zero comments (oh, why can't I be one of the popular bloggers, he wept).
1. 1 medium russet potato and 1 small chunk of onion, shredded
2. squeeze the mixture in a potato ricer, take 100 g of that mixture
3. add raw scrambled egg, 10 g
4. flour, 5 g
5. salt and pepper - too tough to weigh on this scale, when bigger, ca 1/2 - 1% salt by weight of the total food mass
6. baking powder, trace - again too small to weigh, when bigger amount, ca. 2 g / 150 grams starch
Mix lightly and plop pancakes into hot veg oil on cast iron, oil near smoking, ca. 350+F at the surface of the preheated oil (determine this with your IR thermometer gun - and get one if you don't have one), I flatten em when they hit the pan, gently. Flip after a while.
From here, I'd like to vary things with: sweet potato and yukon, blanched and pressed shredded broccoli and cauliflower and even cut the shreds into shorter strands and use the same mixture for the infamous tater tot (deep fried for those puppies). Using a pourable scrambled egg mixture makes scaling the recipe easier. A typical large egg from the supermarket is 50 grams, a useful benchmark number to have (if you're me).