This recipe can be multiplied to feed a crowd. The hash browns will stay crunchy for an hour at room temperature and reheat well in the oven.
1 pound organic russet potatoes, peeled
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 small garlic clove, grated or minced
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons corn or peanut oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Line a microwave-safe bowl with a paper towel and set the box grater in the bowl.
Working quickly, so the potatoes do not have a chance to oxidize, grate the potatoes into the bowl.
Give them a gentle press into the paper towel, then remove the paper towel. Add the salt and baking powder and mix with hands. Microwave the potatoes for 90 seconds. Add the garlic and pepper and mix again.
Melt the butter with the oil in a 12-inch cast iron or other nonstick skillet over medium heat. Divide the potato mixture into four equal portions and press each between hands to form an oblong ½-inch-thick patty. Lay the potato patties in the hot fat and cook without moving for 3 minutes. Flip and cook an additional 3 minutes. If pan looks dry, add a little more oil.
Flip and rotate the patties so they color evenly and cook for another 4-5 minutes. Remove to a paper-towel-lined plate and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Serve with ketchup.