September 22nd, 2010

camp cook


The Venturers landed the job of cooking for the District Clergy & Spouses Christmas Party in December. I'm thinking that ham on the bone is the way to go. Balancing out the rest of the meal then becomes a bit of yin here, some yang there. For the principal starch, I decided I wanted to do a sort of sweet hash, and I started looking up recipes and thinking about flavors. I cooked up a trial batch today, and it was mahvelous. Herewith, the secret recipe:

Christmas Hash

In my 16" cast-iron skillet over medium heat, I put
          4 slices center-cut thick bacon, cut into lardons.

When that was pretty much rendered out, I added a small quantity of
          olive oil.

Next went
          1 medium yellow onion, diced,
          1/2 bulb fennel, diced.

When the onions were looking all translucent, I added
          8 small (couldn't find any large) Yukon Gold potatoes, diced (skins on),
          and then ground sea salt and black pepper over the mess.

I put the lid on the skillet to hasten the cooking along, and when the spuds were beginning to soften, I added
          3 red apples (I used Jonamacs), diced (and I left the skins on these, too),
          some rosemary.

I stirred a bit as I went, to keep everything from sticking.

Zowie!  This is going to be fantastic next to a big chunk of smoky ham goodness! 

If you're interested in trying this for the family, I'd recommend cutting the recipe in half.  I made a mountain of hash (about 12 servings), but then, I was mostly trying for proportionality among the ingredients.  Of course, when I'm cooking for 80 people at the Clergy & Spouses Christmas Party, I'll be multiplying it out and cooking it in large electric roaster ovens.

But still, I'm very happy with how it all turned out.