Corned Beef Hash
The only thing better than corned beef is corned beef hash
I am talking about the real deal, not the World War II era canned corned beef yuck. I'm talking shredded corned beef brisket, sautéed red peppers, onion & celery, and crispy potatoes, topped with a poached or fried egg. I used to make corn beef hash from left over corned beef. Now I skip serving the corned beef and boiled vegetables and go directly to making corned beef hash.
Corned beef - an American Irish tradition
Interestingly, corned beef is not a traditional Irish dish. Food historians suggest that corned beef became associated with the Irish in the U.S. only after U.S. Irish immigrants began buying inexpensive beef brisket from their Jewish neighbors.
Hats off to Bradley Ogden
This recipe is from Bradley Ogden's Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner cookbook. My family eats corned beef hash for dinner, not for breakfast. There is too much work involved to make hash for breakfast; I would never be able to make it happen in the morning. However, we all have been known to eat leftover corned beef hash for breakfast.
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Just warning you - this recipe takes some planning
To make real corned beef hash, you start by cooking the brisket, which takes 2 1/2 to 3 hours. So plan ahead. The hour I estimate to prepare this meal, does not include the time to cook the brisket. If you are going to shred your corned beef, which I prefer over cubed corned beef, you also need to allow time for the corned beef to cool down enough to be able to shred it. I prefer shredding the cooked brisket because of the texture and it is easier to discard the fattier bits by shredding around any fat streaks while the brisket is still warm. You can cook and shred your brisket the day before to break up the job. Store the shredded beef in a plastic bag with most of the air removed so you don't dry out the shreds.
- The key is to buy a good quality corned beef brisket, that is not riddled with fat.
- You can buy one that is pre-seasoned or season one yourself.
- Bradley Ogden calls for butter to sauté the vegetables and brown the potatoes. Butter is tasty, but I have also used olive oil.
- Shred your corn beef when it is still warm, but not hot. Cut the brisket across the grain into 2" pieces. Then shred the pieces, removing any chunks of fat.
- When browning your potatoes, don't overcrowd them or they will steam rather than brown. Brown the potatoes in batches if need be.
- Think about doubling the recipe. It is not much more work to double the recipe than it is to cook a single batch. My family can't get enough and is very happy eating leftovers.
- You can make the corned beef ahead, and then heat it up and top with an egg.
- You will need one, preferably two large frying pans. One to sauté the vegetables and one to brown the potatoes in, or you cook both in the same pan sequentially. Then you will need a large pan or pot to combine the shredded brisket, sautéed vegetables and browned potatoes.
- You can poach your eggs in water, or try poaching them in 1/4 cup of olive oil for a very tender egg. (See Chicken Caesar salad recipe for how to poach and egg in olive oil.) Or just fry them sunny side up in a generous pat of butter.
- 1½ pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed but not peeled
- 6 tablespoons butter or olive oil, divided into 2 T and 4 T portions
- 3 cups red bell peppers, diced into ½" pieces
- 1½ cups onions, diced into ½" pieces
- 4 celery stalks, diced into ½" pieces
- Cayenne pepper to taste
- 3 pounds cooked corned beef brisket, shredded into 2" lengths
- 6 eggs, poached or fried sunny side up.
- ⅓ cup flat parsley, finely chopped
- Bring potatoes to a boil in a pan of salted water. Turn heat down to medium and cook for about 20 minutes, until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork. They should still be firm. Drain the potatoes, slice them in half and let cool. When they are cool enough to handle, slip the potato peels off with your fingers. Chop the potatoes into a ½" dice and set aside.
- In a large frying pan with a lid, add 2 T butter or olive oil. When the fat is hot, add peppers, onion and celery. Cook over medium heat, cover and let the vegetables steam for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove cover and season with salt, pepper and cayenne. Continue cooking over low another 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
- In a very large non-stick pan, add the remaining 4 T butter or olive oil on a medium high burner. When fat is hot, add the diced potatoes and cook until browned on all sides, turning periodically with a spatula. Do not overcrowd the potatoes or they will not brown well. Work in batches if you need to.
- When potatoes are brown and crispy, reduce the heat to medium and add shredded corned beef and sautéed vegetables. Stir to mix and heat everything through. Stir in parsley and remove from heat.
- Poach or fry your eggs. Serve up the corned beef and top each serving with a hot egg.
THIS SERVES WELL WITH