Friday, March 16, 2012

Smoked Salmon Hash: An Anytime Elegant Meal


During a weekend house party in Ann Arbor several years ago, our hosts prepared a lovely dish of salmon hash for breakfast.  They had poached the salmon beforehand, and the flaked salmon was served with potato hash.  I forgot to ask for the recipe, but I found it simple enough to recreate.  (And, really, it’s easier to approximate dishes than to follow recipes since you don’t have to feel like you’re doing anything “wrong,” per se.)  Since then, salmon hash is something that I cook up for any meal—including a mid-week dinner recently.

I’m not generally a huge recipe follower anyway—or writer of recipes, for that matter—and my suggestion is definitely for you to use whatever you have.  I don’t often have fresh salmon I’m poaching for a Wednesday night dinner in between grading papers and preparing for classes.  So I’ve found it more manageable to use smoked salmon (cold or hot smoked).  If you want to poach fresh salmon, that’s wonderful!  If you don’t have fresh pepper of any kind, see if you have jarred roasted peppers (and add later in the cooking process).  Bored with potatoes?  Try using sweet potatoes.  Want to make it special?  Use leeks instead of onions.  No crème fraiche?  Sour cream can easily replace that in the cream sauce.  Other herbs (dried or fresh) can be substituted for the tarragon.  Get creative.  That way, you get to make your own indelible mark on a dish anyway.

So, here is a basic foundational recipe for Smoked Salmon Hash (for Two):

Ingredients:

For the sauce:
½ cup crème fraiche (or sour cream)
2 T white whine vinegar
1 t chopped herbs like tarragon and thyme (if using dried herbs, use half the amount and crumble with your fingers)
salt

For the hash:
Canola or vegetable oil
3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, diced in ¼ inch pieces
1 medium onion, peeled, diced in ¼ inch pieces
½ green or red pepper, diced in ¼ inch pieces
4 oz. smoked salmon (or fresh, poached salmon—or leftover cooked salmon)
salt and pepper

2 eggs (for poaching)
Tabasco or other hot sauce (optional)

Directions:

1.  Combine all sauce ingredients and set aside to meld flavors.


2.  Heat oil in a large non-stick pan over medium to medium-high heat, then add potatoes and cook for about 3 minutes.  Then add onions and cook for about 5 more minutes until the potatoes are just starting to brown and the onions get translucent.  Then add peppers and cook for another 5 minutes or so.  Salt and pepper to taste.


3.  Slice up or flake salmon and add to the hash mixture and cook for about 3 more minutes for the salmon to warm up and to mix with the hash.  The hash is done.


4.  Poach 2 eggs (following the simple directions below) and nestle on top of plated hash, then dash some hot sauce on top.  Spoon a bit of sauce on the side of the hash to dip or mix.  Enjoy!

Note: For the easiest and fastest poached eggs, I follow this basic procedure I learned from bon appetit.   

In a measuring cup or a teacup, pour in ½ cup of water.  Crack an egg carefully into the water.  Cover with a saucer, and place in microwave to heat on High for 1 minute.  Drain, pat dry, and serve!  (You might want to play around with the timing depending on the microwave and the size of the eggs you are using.  Once you get the hang of it, poaching eggs this way will save a lot of time and mess, especially on a busy weeknight.)


No comments:

Post a Comment