Hash

This includes a vegan-friendly recipe for hash as well.

Hash is traditionally a meat that is cooked and then cooked again with a starch (typically potatoes). However, in today’s culinary world, hash has come to mean an amalgamation of ingredients cooked together in a single pan. It still typically consists of starch and protein, but I have seen some chefs take serious liberty and do an all vegetable hash for those on restricted diets.

In the past, hash was cooked in oil, sautéed or pan fried, and almost always had potatoes in it. I have seen squash, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, parsnips, and more substituted for the potatoes; all of these lead to wonderful and imaginative creations that taste wonderful. I am not a huge fan of tofu, but I have tasted and loved a fried tofu hash which was accompanied by a lovely citrus sauce that included tofu, onions, garlic, and cauliflower.

So, should you add a sauce to hash? Or cheese (if you can eat it)? Or any number of other things? Yes. Add what you want. Hash has become to be a combination of ingredients cooked in on skillet where the flavors can marry and form a single cohesive dish. I have yet to see many fruits added to hash, but I would be interested to try a bacon, potato, and pineapple hash with a spicy element to it. Perhaps adding quick pickled jalapeños to the dish once it is plated and maybe a drizzle of sour cream thinned out with a bit of lime juice. Well, that is making me hungry, I believe I will have to try that in the near future.

My personal favorite hash does add a sauce. I love to dice and cook some bacon, drain some of the fat, add in quartered brussel sprouts and then toss to coat with a bit of honey and a healthy amount of sriracha. It is a simple lunch that can be thrown together quickly and will satisfy those of the meat-eating variety.

For those that do not eat meat, my goto vegan hash is pretty simple as well.

Vegetable Hash (Vegan)

1 cup cauliflower florets
1 cup brussel sprouts, shredded
1 cup parsinps, peeled and diced
1 medium yellow onion, minced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 package extra firm tofu
2 tablespoons almond milk (can substitute other milk alternative to accommodate allergies and restrictions)
1/4 cup rice flour
Oil for frying (vegetable, peanut, or other high smoke point oil)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons lime juice (fresh squeezed)
2 tablespoons orange juice (freshly squeezed is best)
salt and pepper

Directions

In a medium, high-walled skillet, pour in a 1/2 an inch of frying oil and heat to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (use frying or candy thermometer to check temperature).

Cut package of tofu into large squares (about 3/4 inch or slightly larger).

In a small, shallow bowl, pour in milk alternative. In a separate bowl measure out the rice flour. Dip the tofu in the milk and then in the rice flour. Repeat the process so that each piece if tofu is dredged twice.

Once oil is a the proper temperature, drop in tofu gently and cook for 1-2 minutes on each side or until it is slightly browned. Remove from oil with a slotted spoon and let drain on paper towels.

In a large (12″-14″) high walled skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions, garlic, and a pinch of salt and pepper.

When onions are beginning to turn translucent, add parsnips. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally so that nothing sticks. Add in cauliflower and shredded brussel sprouts. Cook, uncovered, for 3-5 minutes or until sprouts start to wilt and cauliflower begins to brown.

In a small bowl whisk together lime juice, orange juice, and pinch of salt and pepper.

Add cooked tofu to vegetables and toss with an additional pinch of salt and pepper. Add in juice mixture and toss to coat. Cook for an additional 45-60 seconds. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

You could choose to add some shredded carrots to this dish for some color. If you do, add them when you add the tofu. They should be crunchy and not overcooked. I’ve done it with and without the carrots and I, personally, don’t think they are needed. I added 1/2 cup shredded carrots and I thought that is was a flavor that overpowered the rest of the ingredients, but it is up to you. I encourage you to try it both ways to see what works for you.

Now for my favorite hash.

Bacon and Brussel Sprout Hash

6 slices of thick cut bacon, diced
3 cups brussel sprouts, trimmed, peeled and quartered.
1 medium sweet onion, minced
6 garlic cloves, minced
3 green onions, sliced
2 hoisin sauce
3 tablespoons hot sauce
1 tablespoon honey
salt and pepper

Heat a high-walled skillet over medium-high heat. Once pan is hot, add bacon. Cook for 3-7 minutes or until bacon is done to desired crispness. Remove bacon with slotted spoon and drain all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon grease.

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Add onions, garlic and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook until onions are translucent and garlic is browned. Do not burn the garlic.

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Add in brussel sprouts and cover. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, or until brussels are fork-tender.

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In a small bowl, combine, hoisin, hot sauce, and honey. Whisk together until fully incorporated.

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Drizzle sauce over brussels and toss to coat. Add bacon back in and toss to incorporate. Remove from heat and cover for 5 minutes.

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I make most of my hash with a sauce, but I like sauce on nearly everything. When I was a saucier, I would love cooking and creating so many different sauces. Perhaps one day I will do a post on sauces and share some of my favorites.

But, as you can see, hash can be made up of many things. It needs to be cohesive and delicious. If you love the end result, then you did it right.

As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, let me know. Enjoy.-

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