Sunday, March 2, 2014

Saint Patrick’s Day Corned Beef Hash

Younger people sometimes forget that not all of Ireland is green (Catholic) especially kids who like to pinch you if you aren't wearing green on Saint Patrick’s Day.  There is also the color orange in the Irish flag that represents the Protestants.   And the wide white stripe in the flag represents peace between the Catholics and Protestants (the Irish sometimes forget about that white stripe!)

In our household we have blended our religions.  I was raised Protestant and the LOML (Love of My Life) was raised Catholic.  So we are, in a fashion, Orange & Green “Irish” (neither of us has an ounce of Irish blood but on St. Paddy’s day everyone is Irish!).  Last year, the LOML had some extra time on St. Paddy’s day and came up with the following orange, green & white hash recipe using corned beef.   

Corned beef is very popular in Ireland (and England as well as other countries), it is beef (usually brisket) that is preserved by soaking in a brine often with additional herbs and spices (a brine is a mixture of salt and water).  You can make your own corned beef.  I've never done it but there are recipes available on the internet.  

By the way, hash is kind of like a dry stew – small pieces of meat usually mixed with potato.  If you prefer stew to hash, experiment and add some broth!

Orange, Green & White Corned Beef Hash

(serves 4)

½ pound red potatoes
1 pound corned beef
½ cup chopped white onion
1 TBSP olive oil
2 medium sized carrots, peeled and diced (about ½ inch) *see nutritional note below
2 cups green peas (frozen, canned or fresh)
½ tsp paprika
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Cook potatoes until just fork tender but not mushy.  Remove from water and let them sit until cool enough to handle.  Dice into 1/2-inch cubes (do not remove the peel**).   Using the same cooking water, parboil the diced carrot for 2 minutes, drain and set aside.

In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté onion in olive oil.  When onion bits are soft and translucent, add potatoes and fry until the potatoes are crispy on the edges.

Thickly slice corned beef against the grain and pull into pieces.

Toss together potatoes, corned beef, onion, carrot, and green peas in a large skillet over medium high heat for about 2 minutes or until frozen peas are hot.

Remove from heat and plate, garnishing with paprika and parsley.  This is an easy but delicious all-in-one meal.

*Nutritional Note:  Carrots are not only a good source of beta-carotene (which the body changes to vitamin A, and just one carrot provides about 4x the recommended amount of vitamin A per day) but they are also a good source of dietary fiber.

**The skin of the potato contains as much fiber as the interior.

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