A shrub is a beverage made from fruit, some sort of acid, and a sugar. They were popular in colonial America as a means of preserving fruit without refrigeration. The vinegar breaks down the fruit and the sugar sweetens everything up a bit. The result is a tangy, sweet, complex mixture that is very refreshing when mixed with soda water.
Corned beef hash is my favorite diner food. Some days though, you just want to hang out in the comfort of your apartment instead of trudging down to your local diner. You can probably make this brunch staple better at home, anyway. Let’s get started.
Corned Beef Hash
- 1.5 Tbsp bacon fat
- 4-5 potatoes, depending on size
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 hot pepper, diced
- 1/2 lb cooked corned beef, chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Heat the bacon fat in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat (you can sub olive oil if you don’t have any). Wash and cut the potatoes into a small dice and add to the skillet. Leaving the skin on is fine. Fry until the potatoes are fairly brown (~15 minutes), then mix the diced onions, diced pepper, and chopped corned beef into the skillet. Season with the salt, paprika, and black pepper. Turn up to medium high heat and cook another 8-10 minutes, only flipping everything once with a spatula so that everything starts to get crispy.
Corned beef hash is best served with over-easy or slow-poached eggs, but is great by itself, too. Wash it down with some quality coffee and you are well on your way to a good day.
Most of the time I make this with leftover corned beef. I can’t think of a better way to use it. I’m particular to curing my own corned beef, which is much easier than you think. If you want to try curing it yourself, Michael Ruhlman’s recipe is the one I recommend. If you are using a store-bought corned beef, mix up a batch of Ruhlman’s pickling spice (also at that URL) to cook it in. Better spices make a world of difference.
All the fancy home curing aside, I’ve also been known to cook up a batch of hash with half of a leftover sandwich from Carnegie Deli. Use what you have on hand. That’s the Cook Like Chuck way.