Happy Boxing Day, friends! So it’s noon, and you’ve got the remains of a roast beef in the refrigerator, and a potato or two that didn’t make their way into the purée, or even some leftover roast potatoes. It logically follows that you would have a roast beef hash for brunch.
Hash follows the tradition of great leftover foods – most Northern European cuisines feature a dish of leftover roast meat, fried up with potato and onion, and, if you think about it, fried rice is the same thing in Asian cuisine, featuring leftover rice instead of the potato. The beauty part is that you can use any leftover protein – roast beef, corned beef, roast pork, smoked salmon, chicken, turkey…the method is the same no matter what you use.
Roast beef hash
If you have any leftover salt mixture from the Roast Beef recipe, use it to season the hash. The coriander and black pepper flavors will complement the flavors in the roast.
1/2 lb leftover roast beef, diced 1/4″
2 medium russet potatoes (alternatively, equivalent quantity of leftover roast potato), diced 1/4″
1 small onion, peeled and diced (1/4″)
Leftover salt mix from the Roast Beef recipe, or salt and pepper to taste
poached or sunnyside up eggs, one or two per person
Place a skillet over medium heat and, when hot, add about 1 tbsp oil. Add the onions and sauté until just translucent; then add the potatoes and toss well with the oil. Turn as the onions become golden. Add a few tablespoons of water if necessary to aid cooking and cover to steam.
When the potatoes are nearly tender, add the diced meat. Toss well and do not disturb for a few minutes to allow the potatoes and beef to brown; turn and brown for several minutes more. Season with the salt mixture (or salt and pepper), and serve with a poached egg, ketchup on the side.
Poaching an egg
Authorities differ on the best way to poach an egg. Some say you should add vinegar to the water; some recommend swirling the water quickly to form a vortex, and then adding the egg to the center of the vortex. Although the vortex method presumably allows the swirling water to shape the egg, I find it a giant pain and never use this method. I also do not use vinegar, although it does help the egg white proteins coagulate quickly and maintain the egg’s shape. If you do choose to use vinegar, a small amount will do – about 1 tbsp per quart of water.
The key is to maintain the water’s temperature just below a simmer. In other words, the water should not actually be simmering and bubbles should not break the surface. It helps to bring the water to a simmer and turn it down. Anything more vigorous may cause the egg white to break up as you add the egg to the water. Remove using a slotted spoon and blot on a clean cloth towel.
1 quart water
eggs, any size or type
white vinegar (if you like), 1 tbsp per quart
Add vinegar to the water if you are using it, bring the water to a simmer, and turn down so the water is just below a simmer and bubbles do not break the surface. Break an egg into a small bowl one at a time before adding to the water – you should be able to poach a couple of eggs at a time. Use a slotted spoon to shape the egg white as soon as you lower the egg into the water. Watch closely to determine when the white has cooked through completely and then remove the egg using the slotted spoon. Blot gently on a clean cloth towel if necessary.