Sweet Potato Leek HashPosted: 20 April 2011
>Since we just had a non-breakfast post, it’s clearly time for more breakfast. Have I mentioned how much I love breakfast? And eggs? Or that as a child, ‘breakfast for dinner’ was a common, favorite meal? If you don’t like eggs, well, I really don’t know what to do with you. I would take an egg on a piece of toast over fried chicken and mashed potatoes any day. And I like fried chicken, don’t get me wrong.
Anyway, enough of my professions of love to eggs. Onward to breakfast recipe 10,001. I made this breakfast after getting home with a bunch of produce from the co-op nearby our house. I had eggs, bacon, and a ton of produce. Of course, I had big plans for the bag of fresh basil, the button mushrooms, the bell peppers, carrots and onions. But a leek and a sweet potato were grabbed in a moment of flurry. I saw the leeks next to the carrots and they were such lovely, uniform sizes that I just grabbed one without thinking about it. Then, when I went to retrieve my onions I saw garnet yams that were that perfect size. You know, not too giant but not tiny and stringy either. Just perfect.
By the time I got home, I knew exactly what we’d have for brunch. The leek, savory and sharp, but more mellow than an onion. The yam, sweet and dense. Bacon, salty and crispy. And an egg. A Blue Gentian Farm egg. Which makes everything in this world more perfect. Sweet potato leek hash was born.
I am a late convert to the ‘hash’ style of breakfast. Although I love chicken and potato hash, as well as hash browns and all breakfast-style potatoes, I’ve always been leery of breakfasts that use that h word. The traditional corned-beef hash grosses me out. Partly because you can buy it in a can and partly because the stuff they serve as corned-beef hash at certain national breakfast chains looks like ill-disguised throw-up. I’m sure if someone wanted to give me a lovely slab of fresh corned beef, I could chop it with some onions and potatoes and make a lovely meal of it. But the two times I’ve tasted that dish, it….wasn’t good. And over the course of two trips to Ireland, not a single bed and breakfast or restaurant I visited served it. So I’m not too worried that I’m missing out on a cultural, culinary masterpiece. Technically, haggis also kind of looks like throw-up but the time I tried that it was delicious, so I let it slide. And you know, if someone gave me a fresh slab of corned beef, I would probably just make a sandwich with it.
I digress. This really went over well with Senor. There was some happy grunting coming from the living room and after we were done eating he mentioned at least twice that I could definitely make this again. Plus, it’s so pretty! Although technically I used a yam, sweet potatoes are much, much, much more common in the US and since they’re both orange, we’ll just say this was a sweet potato.
Sweet Potato Leek Hash
1 medium-large leek
1 large sweet potato or yam
4 strips of bacon
Salt and pepper
In a large skillet, cook four pieces of bacon over medium heat until crispy, but not over done.
While the bacon is cooking, peel the sweet potato. Chop into small, cube-shaped pieces. To speed the cooking process, you can parboil the sweet potatoes. I usually just stick them in the microwave for five minutes with a small bit of water on the plate.
Clean and chop your leek. Leeks are positively dirt traps, so to make sure you get them totally clean, slice the leek in half lengthwise. Then, peel each layer back and rinse with cold water. Chop into fine pieces, using all of the white part and some of the green part.