Since not working at the Farmers’ Markets every week anymore, I’ve been feeling a lack of inspiration in the vegetable department. I joined a CSA (Community Supported Agricluture) for the first time and it has quickly cured my uninventive vegetable blues.
Every other Friday I drive out to Green Gate Farmss and pick up a hefty bag of their seasonal bounty. The last month has lent itself to a spring hash that I find myself eating for dinner every night. And I really do mean every night, usually topped with a poached egg (also from the farm). It’s nothing fancy but as my mom always says, if you have the best ingredients, you don’t need much else.
The following recipe is flexible: one vegetable can be replaced by another, double one vegetable and omit another, it’s up to you. I have been adding a handful of dried shiitake mushrooms and I’m really digging that. You can replace (or add) with pancetta instead if you so desire.
Here’s this week’s version I served at a BBQ and it was gone in three minutes. See below for a shortcut.
Spring Bounty Hash
4-6 (1 pound) small baby potatoes, of any color
1 small onion
2-4 cloves garlic (optional)
1/4-1/2 pound green beans
2 small patty pan squash
1/4-1/2 cup dried shitake mushrooms
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Additional options: Beets, Asparagus, Spring Onions, Ramps, Corn…
I prepare each vegetable as I cut so I have a total of one bowl, one skillet, a knife, and a cutting board. Pour a small bit of oil in the skillet before adding each vegetable and add a pinch of salt as each one is cooking. You can add more at the end.
Heat olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Cut the potatoes into cubes about 1/2 inch in diameter and toss them in. Stir occasionally, but let sit untouched so they can get brown. When done, move to serving dish.
Cut onion into small cubes, add to skillet and sauté. When almost soft, add sliced or chopped garlic. Onions and garlic are done when translucent and soft. Place on top of potatoes.
Cut green beans into 1-inch chunks and throw them in the skillet. I like these blistered but still crisp. Turn up heat to medium-high and stir sporadically (total cook time will be under 5 minutes). Place on top of onions.
Follow green bean instructions for the squash.
Place dried mushrooms in a bowl and pour boiling water over. Let sit for 2-4 minutes. Strain, cut mushrooms, and toss them onto the skillet. Sauté for 1-2 minutes over medium heat then add ALL of the vegetables. Turn the heat to high and gently mix the spring bounty together, letting a few pieces get crispy. Tear a handful of basil and mix into the vegetables. Place back in the serving dish.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve right away or at room temperature. I served this batch with chimichuri sauce too.
For a shortcut, use just enough vegetables to fit into your skillet. It can be crowded but not more than a layer or two thick. Sauté the potatoes first, add onion and garlic after about 5 minutes. When potatoes are cooked and onions are translucent, add the other vegetables you are using. Stir sporadically over medium heat. Then you’re done. Eat right out of the skillet.