Asparagus-Pancetta Hash

I don’t believe that words can accurately describe my love of dinners that are all mashed up into one dish.  So any sort of hash just makes me weak in the knees…sometimes I find it odd the way I think about food…

Anyway, this hash rocks.  It is the perfect springtime meal.  I love it for dinner, but it would make a fantastic brunch as well.  It’s easy peasy.  Go make it.

you will need:
1/3 pound pancetta, diced (I buy the prepared kind at Trader Joes)
1 pound frozen diced potatoes (I use Ore Ida hash browns)
1 small (or ½ large) sweet onion, chopped
1 large bunch asparagus, ends trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces
olive oil
salt & pepper
red pepper flakes
pecorino or parmesan cheese
eggs for frying*

To begin, yes you could use fresh potatoes and top quality pancetta and dice it all yourself, but the difference isn’t that significant, in my opinion, to put in the extra work.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat with a tad of olive oil until nice and hot.  Add in the diced pancetta.  Cook until all sides are brown and crispy, stirring often; about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pancetta to a plate lined with a paper towel and set aside.

Leaving the heat right where it is, add in your diced potatoes.  Stir to coat in all the yummy renderings in the pan and then mix in the salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  Let sit for at least 5 minutes before stirring again.  – I always over stir…I think I just get so excited, but don’t do that, it makes the potatoes mushy. – Repeat this “let sit for 5 minutes and then stir” process 3 or 4 times, until the potatoes are nice and brown.

While the potatoes are cooking, boil some water in a saucepan to blanch the asparagus.  Salt the water, and once boiling, toss the asparagus pieces in for 2 minutes.  Drain and immediately run cold water over the strainer for at least a minute, until asparagus is cool to the touch.  Set aside.

Once potatoes are nice and browned, about 20 minutes, add in the chopped onion.  Stir well.  You may need to add a bit more oil to the skillet.  Let the mixture cook for another 5 minutes or so, until onions are cooked to your liking. – At this point you should work on frying your eggs. – Toss the asparagus and pancetta back in the skillet and mix well.  Turn the heat down to medium-low and let everything heat up while you cook your eggs.

Place a heaping amount of hash on a plate and top with a fried egg.  Then season with salt and pepper and sprinkle cheese on top.  Be prepared to be weak in the knees…oh man, soooooo good!

*great technique on how to fry an egg from The Kitchn here.

serves: 2 with leftovers
time: 40 minutes
adapted slightly from: Smitten Kitchen 

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2 Comments

  1. Posted April 26, 2012 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

    look at you, tearing it up in your new kitchen! i’ve never noticed this one on smitten kitchen before, but i have almost everything to make it. which means it will happen soon!

  2. Posted May 1, 2012 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    This looks absolutely delicious! Next occasion I have to make this, I’m going to try!

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