Sautéing a small amount of lamb and using the fat to bloom spices and aromatics gives our Moroccan hash deep flavor.
Potato, Swiss Chard, and Lamb Hash with Poached EgSERVES 4
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS We set out to create a simple breakfast hash inspired by bold Moroccan flavors. We decided on russet potatoes as the base of our hash, since tasters liked their fluffy interiors and crisp exteriors. To make the potatoes cook faster, we microwaved them before cooking them in a skillet. Ground lamb made a deeply savory counterpoint to the potatoes, and its rendered fat provided richness; some aromatics and warm Moroccan spices like cumin, coriander, and paprika offered balanced flavor. Tasters also liked the addition of Swiss chard for its slightly bitter, vegetal flavor; we started cooking the stems before adding the leaves so the stems would fully soften by the time the leaves were wilted. Because we were combining ingredients that cook at different rates, we cooked each element separately before mixing them together. Once we added the mixture to the skillet, we packed it down to ensure good contact with the hot pan, which encouraged deep browning and a crisp, crunchy exterior on our hash. Flipping the hash in portions was easier than flipping the whole thing at once. Finally, we cooked the eggs right in the hash by making divots with a spoon. You will need a 12-inch nonstick skillet with a tight-fitting lid for this recipe. If the potatoes aren’t getting brown in step 4, turn up the heat.
1½ pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1½ pounds Swiss chard, stems sliced ¼ inch thick, leaves sliced into ½-inch-wide strips
8 ounces ground lamb
1 onion, chopped fine
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
1. Toss potatoes with 1 tablespoon oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper in bowl. Cover and microwave until potatoes are translucent around edges, 7 to 9 minutes, stirring halfway through microwaving; drain well.
2. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add chard stems and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook until softened and lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in chard leaves, 1 handful at a time, and cook until mostly wilted, about 4 minutes; transfer to bowl with potatoes.
3. Cook lamb in now-empty skillet over medium-high heat, breaking up meat with wooden spoon, until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in onion and cook until softened and lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in garlic, paprika, cumin, coriander, and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
4. Stir in chard-potato mixture. Using back of spatula, gently pack chard-potato mixture into skillet and cook, without stirring, for 2 minutes. Flip hash, 1 portion at a time, and lightly repack into skillet. Repeat flipping process every few minutes until potatoes are well browned, 6 to 8 minutes.
5. Off heat, make 4 shallow indentations (about 2 inches wide) in surface of hash using back of spoon, pushing hash up into center and around edges of skillet (bottom of skillet should be exposed in each divot). Crack 1 egg into each indentation and season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook over medium-low heat until whites are just set and yolks are still runny, 4 to 6 minutes. Sprinkle with chives and serve immediately.
Fried Eggs with Potato and Parmesan Pancake
SERVES 8 VEG
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS Potatoes are an ultraversatile Mediterranean ingredient; they’re used throughout the region in a wide variety of recipes. We wanted to use potatoes to make a hearty pancake that could be served with a fried egg for either brunch or supper. We quickly found that producing a golden-brown crust for our potato pancake wasn’t much of a problem, but the inside always came out gluey and half-cooked. To fix this, we first eliminated moisture by wringing the raw grated potatoes in a dish towel. Covering the potatoes to start, then uncovering them to finish cooking, created a surprisingly light texture. Our final breakthrough came when we removed excess starch by rinsing the raw potatoes in cold water, then tossed them with 1½ teaspoons of cornstarch to provide just enough starch to hold the cake together. A bit of Parmesan cheese enhanced the pancake’s flavor and gave it a distinctly Mediterranean identity. You will need a 12-inch nonstick skillet with a tight-fitting lid for this recipe. For the best texture, shred the potatoes on the large shredding disk of a food processor. If using a box grater, cut the potatoes lengthwise so you are left with long shreds. Be sure to squeeze the potatoes as dry as possible.
2½ pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and shredded
1½ teaspoons cornstarch
Salt and pepper
¼ cup plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
8 large eggs
1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (½ cup)
1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
1. Place potatoes in large bowl and fill bowl with cold water. Using hands, swirl to remove excess starch, then drain, leaving potatoes in colander.
2. Wipe bowl dry. Place one-third of potatoes in center of clean dish towel. Gather towel ends together and twist tightly to squeeze out moisture. Transfer potatoes to now-empty bowl and repeat process with remaining potatoes in 2 batches.
3. Sprinkle cornstarch, 1 teaspoon salt, and pinch pepper over potatoes. Using hands or fork, toss ingredients together until well combined.
4. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add potato mixture and spread into even layer. Cover and cook for 6 minutes. Uncover and, using spatula, gently press potatoes down to form round cake. Cook, occasionally pressing on potatoes to shape into uniform round cake, until bottom is deep golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes.
5. Shake skillet to loosen pancake and slide onto large plate. Add 2 tablespoons oil to skillet and swirl to coat. Invert potato pancake onto second plate and slide potato pancake, browned side up, back into skillet. Cook, occasionally pressing down on pancake, until bottom is well browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer pancake to cutting board and set aside while preparing eggs.
6. Crack eggs into 2 small bowls (4 eggs per bowl) and season with salt and pepper. Wipe skillet clean with paper towels. Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil in now-empty skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Working quickly, pour 1 bowl of eggs in 1 side of skillet and second bowl of eggs in other side. Cover and cook for 2 minutes.
7. Remove skillet from heat and let sit, covered, about 2 minutes for runny yolks (white around edge of yolk will be barely opaque), about 3 minutes for soft but set yolks, and about 4 minutes for medium-set yolks. Slide eggs onto individual plates. Sprinkle pancake with Parmesan and chives, cut into wedges, and serve with eggs.
Frying Eight Eggs at Once
1.Crack eggs into small bowls (4 eggs per bowl) and season with salt and pepper.
2.Working quickly, pour 1 bowl of eggs in 1 side of skillet and second bowl of eggs in other side.
3.Cover and cook for 2 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and let sit, covered, until eggs achieve desired doneness.