Beet and chard brunch hash

Beet and chard brunch hash 

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Well, I made a hash out of this one. I know potato hash is meant to be a bit more- well- separate- but I made this before drinking a first coffee and it took me about twice as long to work out where I last put the matches to light the candles let alone consider that hash potatoes don't need to be cooked to mash-point. But once I realised my mistake, I also remembered what a mess most breakfasts look like really- scrambled eggs- beans everywhere- so I think maybe it's a thing to embrace pre-coffee. This hash is therefore what I'm going to call a hybrid between a regular potato hash and bubble and squeak, both splendid brunches in themselves, and with the beetroot, you just get this brilliant earthy flavour that is so moreish and perfect for digging in to after just waking up. This is the breakfast to cook in your PJs.

I got the inspiration for this recipe funnily enough from an article called 'The 10 best egg recipes' from the Guardian. It's by Allegra McEvedy, who is one of my favourite go-to chefs. She just knows how to get the best out of vegetables and fresh produce like no-one else I've come across.

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Obviously there's not much from her recipe that features in this one apart from the beetroot,  but it was a great starting point for this brunch. Instead of salt beef and egg, I chose rainbow chard and carrot to add some other flavours to this hash. Then, maybe it's my Polish roots as ever coming through, but I just cannot think of two ingredients like beetroot and mustard without adding gherkins, or ogorki as we call them at home. The tang of the orgorki and mustard just tastes brilliant against the blunt earthiness of the beetroot, and it picks out the carrot and onion too. If the thought of a pile of pickled cucumbers is a bit too much for you at breakfast then to be quite frank you're not doing it right, but yeah leave them out if you insist. 

 

Makes enough for 2 hungry people

Ingredients

4-5 medium sized raw beetroots, peeled and cut in to cubes

Salt 

500g potatoes, peeled and cut in to cubes

1 large carrot, peeled and cut down small

Olive oil

1/2 tsp ground pepper

1 tsp chili powder

1 onion, cut down small

100g rainbow chard, cut into chiffonade strips and discarding the bottom inch of the stalk as this tastes really bitter

 

To garnish

Gherkins, sliced in to matchstick strips

1 tsp English mustard per person

 

Add slices of ciabatta or whatever bread you have in and toast on a griddle pan with olive oil.

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If you're using raw beetroot, start by putting the beetroot cubes on to boil with some salt. Next put the potatoes and carrots on to par-boil. If you're using cooked beetroot, chop as directed but save until just adding them to the frying pan later in the recipe.

While everything is cooking away, gently heat some olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed frying pan, add in salt and pepper and chili powder, and then the chopped onion. Saute the onion on a really low heat for about 5 minutes, making sure it doesn't catch on the heat or turn a darker shade than golden brown. This will form the base flavour of the hash so it's important to give it time to soften and sweeten. 

After about 15 minutes, the potatoes and carrots should be virtually cooked through, so drain and add to the onions with a good glug of olive oil and some more seasoning if you think it needs it. Once the potatoes and carrots have mixed in with the onion, add the chard and mix together, and finally drain and add the beetroot. Try not to stir the beetroot around too much as it will make everything turn pink, and instead just let it fry in the pan and heat through. 

Plate up with toasted bread, and finish with the gherkins and a good dollop of English mustard. 

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