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Old 03-16-2020, 01:27 PM
singular1 is offline
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Corned beef hash help


Iím trying to replicate my favorite Thursday morning breakfast food at my office cafeteria from home with soggy sad results. The cafeteria at work serves corned beef hash every Thursday, with lots of delightful crispy bits throughout. I finally found the same canned hash they used and was looking forward to sharing it with mr singular. But I could only get it hot and mooshy, with nary a crispy bit to be found. Even the can exttols the glory of crispy hash. The directions say to put it in a pan and get crispy - pretty basic. I use cast iron pans, so I put butter in first, because thatís what civilized people do. Did the butter mess it up? I have one more can in our quarantine pantry to try again - mr. singular had never had hash before, and Iíd like to present it properly. Any tips?
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Old 03-16-2020, 01:40 PM
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I'd skip the butter. Canned corned beef hash is pretty fatty and doesn't need any more from the butter. And the water in the butter is working against your crispy goal.
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Old 03-16-2020, 02:42 PM
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The only thing I could think of is to get your pan nice and hot before throwing in the corned beef hash, and then not touching it until it crisps up. Then you can flip. The butter may or may not have an effect. I can't imagine it being that much a problem, but I don't think you need any more fat. Just a really hot pan, throw it in. If I had to guess on times ... well ... I'd say heat the pan until it just starts to smoke, throw in the hash, spread it out, and then about two minutes a side. But that is completely a guess.
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Old 03-16-2020, 03:42 PM
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For something like this that I need to get crispy, I skip all non-stick and coated cookware and go for hot bare metal with a metal spatula and let it cook a long time before flipping (more like scraping, in fact I usually use a paint scraper or something) when I know for sure it is crispy. At least that's how I remember doing it. I have a can right now myself that I bought during my COVID19 essentials grocery run of buying random food that's actually on shelves. When I worked in a restaurant we used a large flat black griddle that was cleaned and seasoned occasionally and nothing was added to it until the next time. Stuff like home fries got a large ladle of butter, but corned beef hash and other things with fat content went on directly. YMMV.
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Old 03-16-2020, 03:53 PM
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It'll be mushy until the moisture steams off. Don't cover the pan and give it a stir occasionally.

It takes longer for it to get crispy, as opposed to just heated through. You're probably not waiting long enough to dish it up.
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Old 03-16-2020, 06:44 PM
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I've had no problem with a can of Hormel hash and a no-stick frying pan. I don't like to make it TOO hot (because it's a no-stick pan) , but I heat the pan up - no butter or oil - and put the hash in. Let it cook, stir it around as it heats up, and then I turn it down a bit. Just leave it and let it cook on the bottom with a nice crust. I lift up a quarter of it at a time with a spatula and flip it, again leave it to cook till it gets a crust.....Mr. Salinqmind used to open a can, cut it into slices, put it on a pan, and bake in the oven (sometimes with some bbq sauce brushed on top, after it cooked a while) - then turn on the broiler. It was nice and crisp on top of the slices, that was good enough.
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Old 03-17-2020, 02:33 AM
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More time in the pan. I'm thinking more than five minutes. With that cooking time, it's going to burn if there's too much heat.
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Old 03-17-2020, 05:56 AM
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I also use a non-stick pan with no added fat or oil. Dump out the hash (small can of Hormel's, 'cause it's just me) and smooth it to a flat layer or uniform thickness, then leave it alone over medium-ish heat UNCOVERED. Leave it a good long time-- maybe ten minutes. Then flip over (in sections), press down, and let that side go for a similarly long time. Flip again and kind of smush everything together in the middle of the pan into a solid mass. By now there should be plenty of crispiness. If not, keep frying and flipping. When the desired crispness has been achieved, I create one or two depressions in the hash-mass and break an egg into each one. THEN I cover for a while-- maybe 3-5 minutes? Just keep peeking until the whites are solid and there's a thin film of white over the still-liquid yolk. Soooo good.

Dang. I wish I had a can or five in the pantry right now...
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Old 03-18-2020, 12:38 PM
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Thanks for the advice everybody. I'll give this a shot on Saturday with my remaining can and no butter, more time. Mr. singular really likes it - he told me to be sure and order more for our next delivery - so crispy will be a real treat! I would try it earlier, but I'm one of the lucky ones to be working at home, and cooking just doesn't get along with 10 hour work days, even when it's in my jammies!
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Old 03-18-2020, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by actualliberalnotoneofthose View Post
When I worked in a restaurant we used a large flat black griddle...
And that griddle is a big help with this kind of cooking. Giving the food room to spread out and let steam escape helps enormously.

OP, use the biggest skillet you have and make sure it's not overloaded. A thin layer will crisp up much faster and nicer that a packed pan.
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