Monday, March 19, 2012

Ocean Getaway

Just back from  Seabrook Washington with family and friends this week.  Walked on the beach,drank some champagne,cooked some awesome meals and  relaxed from city life -- good times! The biggest challenge wasn't packing-1 pair of jeans,sneakers and 2 sweatshirts-it was  what to cook for 6 adults and 2 kids and not make it complicated.  We took turns at meals and I made dinner on Friday (my favorite lasagna) and breakfast on Saturday.  I found  the perfect recipe for breakfast. I wanted something different and something that I could be sure no one had tasted before and I found it : Sweet potato hash topped with eggs-yummy and good for you .

 I found the recipe at The Kitchn . I could spends hours (and sometimes do) just perusing recipes on that blog and decorating ideas on their other blog :

When I saw the photo of the hash, with all those lovely caramelized onions and sweet potatoes , I knew it would be perfect for breakfast.  And besides, I could make it 2 days ahead of time so no slaving over the kitchen stove while at the ocean for this gal.

Adapted from The Kitchn
Thanks to Faith at The Kitchn for this recipe,click on The Kitchn to see her beautiful photos and prep.
serves 8
2 pounds onions, about 2 large
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Table salt
1 pound fresh Italian sausage or chorizo- I mixed 1/2 Italian and 1/2 chorizo-perfect !
3 pounds sweet potatoes, about 3 large potatoes, ideally organic-I used 4 potatoes-3 sweet potatoes and 1 yam
6 large garlic cloves
4 long stalks rosemary, about 1/4 cup of leaves-make sure you use fresh-dried just won't make the same dish
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more to taste if necessary
Freshly ground black pepper
To serve:
Large eggs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Parmesan cheese, to serve

To make the hash:
Heat the oven to 450°F. Peel the onions and cut them in half lengthwise, then cut them into thin half-moons. Cut the half-moons in half. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. When it foams up add the onions and sprinkle lightly with salt. (Don't worry if they are crammed into the pan; they will rapidly cook down.) Lower the heat slightly and cook the onions for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, and lowering the heat if they seem to be burning. Cook them until they are very dark brown.
Meanwhile, put the sausage in another skillet and brown over medium-high heat, chopping it up into fine crumbles with a spatula. Cook the sausage for about 10 minutes, or until it is browned and beginning to crisp. Drain away any excess fat.
While the onions and sausage are cooking, chop the unpeeled sweet potatoes into cubes that are about 1/2-inch to a side. Finely mince the garlic and rosemary leaves, and toss them in a large bowl with the sweet potatoes. Toss with the olive oil, kosher salt, and a generous helping of black pepper.
When the onions are dark brown and the sausage is crispy, stir these into the sweet potatoes as well. Line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment paper, and spread out the sweet potatoes evenly. Roast the sweet potatoes for 30 to 45 minutes (roasting time depends on the size and uniformity of the sweet potato chunks, as well as the variety of sweet potato you buy) or until they are soft and browned.
Refrigerate the cooled hash for up to 5 days.
To serve:
Heat the oven to 425°F. Spread a relatively thin layer of the (already cooked) sweet potato hash in a baking dish, such as a cast iron skillet or a 9x13-inch baking dish. You can also bake in individual ramekins. Make small wells in the sweet potatoes and crack in large eggs. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are hot and the eggs are baked through. (Test the eggs by prodding them with a fork to check the firmness of the white and the yolk; baked eggs are deceptive in that the white often looks much less cooked than it really is.)

Serve immediately, with shavings or sprinkles of Parmesan cheese, if desired.

I wanted to make sweet potato biscuits to go with the hash but unfortunately I didn't pick up enough sweet potatoes to make the biscuits, so I improvised and made pumpkin biscuits. These were incredible with melted butter that had maple syrup mixed into the butter along with a little maple syrup dribbled over the biscuits when served. Mmmm good.

Pumpkin biscuits with maple butter
yields approximately 18 (2-inch) biscuits
For the biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
6 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into cubes
1 cup pureed pumpkin (approximately 1 large potato)
1/2 cup buttermilk, plus additional as needed
For the maple butter
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 tablespoons real maple syrup
Preheat oven to 375°

In a large bowl, mix together all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Using a pastry blender (or your fingers if you don't have one) cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is a mix of pea-size balls and small crumbs.
In a separate bowl, mix together the pumpkin and buttermilk until well-combined. Fold into the flour mixture, adding more (up to 4 tablespoons) buttermilk if necessary. The dough should form a nice ball, and be just a bit on the sticky side, as opposed to crumbly and dry. Chill the dough for thirty minutes, if desired, although you can bake them off immediately if you would like.
Pat out the dough onto a lightly floured surface to about a 1-inch thickness (do not roll out the dough with a rolling pin). Cut out rounds using a well floured biscuit cutter. Gather the remaining scraps and repeat until all the dough is used. Place the biscuits on a large sheet pan and bake for 15 minutes (or bake in batches).
For the maple butter, mix the room temperature butter and maple syrup until completely combined and smooth. Serve with warm biscuits or refrigerate until needed.
Note: the cooked biscuits will freeze beautifully and can be pulled out at a moments notice. Just bake at 375° until heated through. Place a little gravy boat of maple syrup on the table so that guests can dribble a little syrup over the buttered biscuits-heavenly !

Our little sunroom at the Sand Dollar Cottage
Beautiful sunny spot to have coffee in the morning and watch the waves come in