My mom hates hashes. Apparently it was a fallback meal during her childhood and something about however Grandma made it (them?) seriously rubbed my mother the wrong way. To this day she shudders over hash. Which I find so odd because to me no 2 hashes are the same other than (usually, in the States) including potatoes, which as far as I know she likes. And since I seriously love potatoes, 9 times out of 10 I love hashes.
This dish was born out of my desire to enjoy the flavors of paella without making one. Not only am I not up for that kind of challenge right now, while I am packing my house, but seriously every time I try those kinds of rice dishes they end up soggy. I swear I follow the instructions perfectly and still they end up mushy.
But then I was thinking about my favorite paellas, the ones that come with lots of peas and Spanish chorizo, and gosh wouldn’t those same ingredients taste divine with potatoes? And I even have beautiful local baby redskin potatoes needing to be used soon. Eureka!
One note: I currently have no saffron. I could buy quality Saffron for not much money in PA and I have been stubbornly resisting replacing it until I can find a decent deal on it here. But if you have saffron, I would dissolve a good pinch of it in 2-4 tablespoons of warm water. Then, when you first put the potatoes in the pan, crank the heat up and toss that water in. Providing your pan is hot enough, the liquid ought to cook off quickly, just leaving behind saffron goodness. Then lower the heat and return to cooking as instructed. I will say though this dish was pretty fine without the saffron.
My fellow blogger, Cathy, over at Noble Pig just started a fabulous new monthly blogging event centered around potatoes: Potato Ho Down Wednesday (Cathy is not without a sense of humor—seriously her blog his hysterical, check it out). Well appearances be damned, I am submitting this dish. Ugly but yummy food deserves to be celebrated too! Our dish must be submitted under our “ho name”—pet’s name plus middle name—well I go by a middle initial, so I guess my dish is Delilah J.’s Paella Hash. Make sure you check the round up on her site on July 16 (the third Wednesday of every month).
Delilah J.’s Paella Hash
12 new potatoes, parboiled (should still be quite firm)
5-6 garlic scapes, chopped
2 medium onions, sliced thinly
1 sweet bell pepper, sliced thinly
1-2 links Spanish chorizo, diced
1 t Spanish smoked paprika
Several handfuls of frozen peas
Juice of half lemon (or whole lemon if not very juicy)
While the potatoes are boiling, sauté the chorizo in a little olive oil (how much will depend on how fatty the chorizo is and also what kind of pan you use—I needed a fair amount as I was using stainless steel). Remove the chorizo after the fat is rendered with a slotted spoon. Set the pan with the fat aside until your potatoes are ready.
After parboiling, draining and cooling the potatoes, slice them thinly. Re-heat the pan on medium heat and add the onions and potatoes; spread them out. Cover the pan and let them cook on medium low for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, add the pepper and garlic scapes. If you need more oil, drizzle it in between the potatoes now (this is not diet food). Also add the smoked paprika. Cover again and let cook another 10 minutes or so—you just need to watch for doneness, rather than time it. The potatoes should be fork tender and hopefully browning a little. There is a trick to this last part, which I am not very good at—my mom swears you need to leave the potatoes alone. But until you have made them often enough it is hard to know if there is enough oil or if the temp is right without stirring a bit. So mine did not brown as much as I wanted.
Right before serving, add the frozen peas and heat through. Squirt with the half lemon and serve with a salad of simple greens on the side.