It should go without saying, but potatoes are pretty much the reigning champ when it comes to breakfast starches. I’m not really sure there’s even another dog in the race.
But I’m bit burned out on potatoes these days so I was looking for another breakfast option.
It’s not that I wanted to break up with potatoes, but I wouldn’t mind seeing other people. I’m sure potatoes will understand.
1) Peel vegetables and cut into cubes. The best way to do this is to cut each veggie into planks, then sticks, then cubes.
2) Add a good drizzle of oil to a large skillet over medium high heat. Once hot, add the veggies (except the garlic). Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until veggies are starting to get crispy.
3) Stir in garlic, syrup, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Continue to cook for another few minutes, or until they reach your desired level of crispiness.
4) For eggs, add a small dab of butter to a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Once melted and bubbling, crack in eggs. Cook for about 90 seconds until whites are mostly set.
5) Cover pan with a lid or plate and cook for another 30 seconds or so.
6) Slide eggs on hash and serve immediately.
Getting Down to the Roots
There’s some snarky reader out there (or many) that are going to point out immediately that butternut squash isn’t a root vegetable. This I know.
But most of the ingredients are root veggies so I went with it. If it fits better, you could call this a Fall Veggie Hash, but of course, the ingredients aren’t just grown in Fall.
Whatever you want to call it, you’ll need these ugly things. And let’s face it, they really are the ugly ducklings of vegetables.
The prep for this hash might be a bit intimidating for some. It does involve a good amount of peeling and chopping and these veggies are a bit more awkward to work with than your standard potato.
It really helps to have a great veggie peeler. I’ve been using the Titan peeler for a few years now and it might be the only infomercial product that I’ve ever tried that actually lives up to the claims. It’s almost dangerous it’s so good at peeling. Sometimes it peels faster than I’m ready for and I’ve almost peeled my flesh.
Note on the Squash: Don’t try peeling it. The skin is way to thick. Instead, cut off the ends and stand it on it’s end. Then you can cut off the skin with a knife.
There’s a method for cubing vegetables that’s is legendary in culinary school (so I hear). There’s always horror stories about people having to cube metric tons of vegetables until their cubes are perfectly identical.
I’m still not 100% sure who really cares about that, but the method that’s used will let you cube vegetables about as fast as possible.
First cut your vegetables in half so there is a flat surface. Then slice your vegetable into planks. Try to get these as even as possible. For a good hash I usually shoot for 1/4-1/2 inch thick.
It might help to stand the veggie on it’s end and cut down instead of across for this.
Once you have your planks, just line them up and slice vertically through them. This makes sticks.
Then just turn the veggies horizontal and slice across the sticks to make cubes.
I would probably be fired from any French restaurant for my uneven cubes, but they’ll do for my purposes. And for yours.
Do this with all your vegetables and toss them together in a bowl. It’s actually kind of a colorful mix of things. The squash really helps in that department.
Cooking the Hash
Add a few tablespoons of olive oil to a large skillet and get it hot over medium high heat. Once it’s hot, toss in all your hash ingredients, except the garlic. Let them cook for about ten minutes on their own, stirring once maybe. You want them to soften up some and get a bit crispy.
Then toss in your garlic, maple syrup, and red pepper flakes. Continue to cook it until the hash is cooked through and crispy in places.
You can obviously keep cooking this until it’s even crispier. Just your call on that one.
My favorite way to eat any hash is with a nice runny egg or two. I kind of mix it up between over-easy, poached and sunny-side up. On this day I was feeling the sunny side up.
The easiest way to make sunny side eggs are to add a small dab of butter to a nonstick pan over medium heat. Once the butter is bubbling, crack in your eggs. Cook for about 90 seconds until the whites are mostly set. Then slide a plate right on top of your pan (or a lid if your pan has a lid) and cook for another 30 seconds. That will lightly steam the tops of the eggs and set them a bit more.
Slide the eggs on the hash and your ready to rock and roll.
The thing that shocked me the most about this hash was the intense flavor. The veggies in this are way more flavorful than your standard potato. They have a subtle spice to them that’s really nice paired with the maple syrup (which is optional, but not really).
If you want to break up with potatoes for the weekend, give these veggies a shot.