This dish is a symphony of seemingly contradictory elements -- economical yet special, simple yet complex. In short, it's a perfect brunch dish.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a large pot, bring potatoes to a boil over high in salted water. Reduce to a rapid simmer and cook 7 minutes. Drain well and return potatoes to pot. Meanwhile, in a large cast-iron or heavy skillet, cook bacon over medium-high, stirring occasionally, until browned but not completely crisp, 7 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels to drain.
Pour all but 2 tablespoons fat into a small bowl. Return skillet to heat and cook one-third the potatoes, stirring occasionally, until light golden brown, 3 minutes. Transfer to an 8-inch round cake pan (2 inches deep); sprinkle with one-third the bacon. Press firmly with the back of a large spoon to pack mixture very tightly. Cook remaining potatoes in 2 batches. Layer each batch in pan with bacon, pressing as you go. Spoon 1/4 cup reserved bacon fat over mixture. Cover tightly with foil; bake 1 hour. Remove foil; bake until potatoes are crisp and golden, 30 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes. Invert onto a plate.