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How can I spice up my Hash dishes this year?

Q:

How can I spice up my Hash dishes this year?

A:

Cost-effective, hearty, comforting and wildly popular, hashes have taken up a permanent position on brunch and dinner menus. Using either fresh or processed potatoes as a foundation (which came first: hash or hash browns?), pairing shredded or cubed potatoes, French fries or home fries with proteins (meat, seafood or poultry) can elevate a side dish into a satisfying entrée. Consider Idaho® Potato and Trout Hash, Cuban Pork Hash, Dos Caminos Carnitas and Idaho® Potato Hash, J&B Hash with Braised Beef Shortribs, and Jamie’s Crab Hash: each one an operator variation on the theme.

Dos Caminos Carnitas and Idaho® Potato Hash
Dos Caminos Carnitas and Idaho® Potato Hash

To add a signature touch to your hash, consider colorful potato varieties such as reds and yellow-flesh potatoes or fingerlings for the base. While often more expensive than russets, labor savings (ready-to-use, no peeling, better portion control) can offset the premium. In fact, your customers will likely recognize and appreciate the customization of your dish.

Using economical russets in hashes allows the option of pairing more costly fresh, seasonal ingredients like fresh herbs, salmon and Shiitake mushrooms for Salmon & Shiitake Idaho® Potato Hash. In winter, the color and flavor of root vegetables and winter squash warm vegetarian hashes. Or, load up any hash with multiple proteins–think sausage, ham and bacon–for a meat-centric meal.

As always, presentation can “seal the deal.” Using a cast iron skillet like Austin’s 24 Diner gives hash a homespun appeal most diners can’t resist.

24 Diner’s 24 Hash
24 Diner’s 24 Hash

Potato Hash Tips:

  • Hash adapts to protein-loaded (optimize protein scraps and leftovers), upscale (crab and lobster) or vegan/vegetarian (tofu spiced with jalapeño).
  • Hash delivers a more rustic and hearty dish than starch sides such as rice or grains.