Today I am venturing into a food territory of almost mythical proportions. The corned beef hash.
You see, corned beef hash reminds me of 1970’s camping trips. Not that I went on any camping trips in the 1970’s, but other people did and spoke about it, wrote about it, eulogised about it and generally made corned beef hash the ‘go to whilst camping’, foodstuff. I always thought it sounded very romantic, and was, if I’m honest, slightly envious of children I knew whose families ate corned beef hash at home, as it was just not something we ever had.
And then corned beef seemed to disappear off the planet, only to reemerge as a much more expensive version of itself. With one exception. The method of opening the tin has not changed one iota. Which was always one of the reasons I loved it when, as children, we had corned beef for tea. The tin.
There is something innately satisfying about a tin that opens with a key. To the extent that if you haven’t opened a tin of corned beef, you really are missing out on one of the ‘Ooo, satisfying’ moments of life. Of course, conversely, if the key breaks there is a feeling of complete failure, totally disproportionate to other events in life, but still, not to be underestimated.
So today I am living the dream and making a corned beef hash. Yes, I realise that is slightly over egging the pudding, but nevertheless, I’m giving it a go.
Having read quite a lot of different recipes I decided I would slow bake the hash in the oven, (I can hear gasps of horror reverberating around Lancashire already) and use the following ingredients:
Fresh thyme leaves, one large onion sauteed in a big knob of butter, a glug of red wine, a beef stock cube, one tin of corned beef chopped, a few splashes of Worcestershire Sauce, a few potatoes, diced, ground black pepper and just boiled water.
I put all the above ingredients into a dish, and popped it in the oven, gas mark 3, for a couple of hours.
Half an hour before we ate, I poured the lot into a pan, sprinkled a handful or so of frozen peas into the mix and let it simmer for ten minutes.
It was nothing like I thought it should be, although if you’d asked me to describe what I thought it should look or taste like, I would be hard pressed to give you an answer. However, the gang enjoyed it immensely, which is all the ratification I need.