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Hash advice please

 
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 3:31 pm    Post subject: Hash advice please Reply with quote

When I make corned beef or roast beef hash I'm happy with the flavor but rarely the texture. I want it to be moist, with a great crust. But I usually get a mixture that will not crisp up.
What cut of beef is best (does it matter, since it's chopped into small pieces?) What ratio of potato/onion do you use? What kind of oil/butter? How much broth/liquid added? Hash should be easy (?) but it's one of the hardest things for me to get right!
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Griffin



Joined: 09 Jun 2006
Posts: 932
Location: England

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Er, my first instinct is to tell you not to inhale!!! Wink

Will a glaze on top crisp it up a little? A suggestion, I'm not an expert, but it just might work.
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I still need to know what I'm doing wrong that I can't produce a lovely crisp crust that lifts right off the bottom of the pan cleanly,

but oh Griffin, thanks for the memories!! Cool
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Rainey



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 2498
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gingerpale- I just tried to make some last week with the leftovers of some steak. Very disappointing.

I think what's happening is hash is something people used to make from leftover roast and roasted potatoes. Back then their roasts were much fattier and I bet beef fat is what's missing in the flavor and in the crunchiness. My guess is if you got some beef lard or tallow, you'd see an immediate difference. Of course, you could find it hard to locate. Or you just may not want to add a lot of fat to your food. Culturally as well as husbandarily (I think I just made that up to describe how food animals are raised), we've moved on to a leaner diet.

IF you want to keep working on it as a challenge or for that taste you miss (for me it's cod fish cakes from salted dried cod), I'd reserve any rendered fat from roasts until you have enough to flavor, moisten and brown your hash. Then I'd work with a slowly braised brisket.
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quel bummer! I remember canned hash (Mary Kitchen brand name) got crispy, but yes, very very greasy.
I also remember Gorton's codfish cakes (canned too)--a mix of mashed potatoes and cod--I begged for it as a child. Now I read about cod fillets air-drying in Portuguese villages--yeah, like I'll be there next weekend to partake. Like I won't live here in Salt Lake City for the next zillion hellish summers and then die here...
Perhaps blog "Cooking for Engineers" can give me the right ratio of fat to lean.
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Rainey



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 2498
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 11:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good idea to see if Cooking for Engineers has any breakdown on it! I haven't remembered to wander over there in a long time. What an excellent and fun and informative blog!

Another thing to thank Clotilde for. I first picked it up from her blogroll.

Hope you'll let us know how your experiments go. I know a great breakfast place in LA that cooks the hash really crispy but I don't suppose that helps you much. Sad
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2007 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gingerpale! I think you need a holiday!! Very Happy
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2007 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh David thank you--you often notice little places for kind words!
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2007 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I need a holiday too--let's meet in Portugal, watch the fish dry and have us a big ol' feed of codcakes!
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Rainey



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
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Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2007 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are codfish cakes (with apologies to gingerpale for going in another direction) something that are eaten in Ontario? I bet they would be in the Maritimes.

It's something my great aunt and great grandmother in Maine used to make for me and they were fabulous cooks!

Once when I found some dried cod and made them for my family — sharing all my memories and enthusiasm just of how special they were — they took one bite and looked at me like I'd just escaped from some facility. Guess there must have been more to the ones I remember than just food...
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2007 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stranger things have happened, David!
What could be more natural than North Americans on the coast of Portugal?-- Land ho!!
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2007 3:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I can't say I've ever even seen codcakes offered here in Ontario Rainey but I'm sure there is a Newfie/Maritime themed restaurant somewhere that serves them! Of course the cod stocks being what they are I suspect substitutions are made regularly!
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2007 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rainey--first of all, slow and patient cooking in a very slick & expensive non-stick pan has put a crust on my hash--the recipes say "cook for 6-8 minutes then flip"--well, turn down the heat and cook for at least 20 undisturbed minutes--THAT worked for me. Also, I guess my cast iron is not as wonderfully seasoned as I thought--hash still sticks--I bow to technology and teflon.

Second of all, don'tcha hate it when a loved dish is poorly received???
Enthuse for a week, cook all day, and then hear just polite murmurs -- Crying or Very sad
I really really should know by now, Tastes Differ!
Is your codfish cake recipe mixed with potato--and does it require the kind of cod that you must soak/rehydrate?
The seafood situation in the world is a sad story which probably will not get any better in my lifetime.
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Rainey



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 2498
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2007 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gingerpale- Yesss on all counts!
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