A few years ago, I “planned” to make the traditional corned beef and cabbage fare for a casual St. Patrick’s Day get-together. I didn’t plan very well, though. I procrastinated until mid-morning of March 17th, and by then, I couldn’t find corned beef in any of the local grocery stores. I couldn’t find deli corned beef or lamb cuts, either. As my Scots-Irish luck would have it, I spied a bit of ground lamb in the meat case. I asked the butcher for all of it; almost 1 ½ pounds. I didn’t know how I would feed my guests and myself with such a small of it and hoped that I would figure it out as the day went on.
Lamb meatloaf, lamb burgers, ground lamb stew all seemed to be good options to stretch a small amount of ground meat. But, once again, I procrastinated and lacked adequate time and ingredients to prepare any of the aforementioned entrées. And, once again, Scots-Irish luck to the rescue; I had 3 large potatoes, some frozen peas and carrots mix, and dehydrated minced onion. I didn’t have another option at that point and decided to go for it.
Well, the guests arrived on time, dinner was served on time, and WOW! We ate every last bite of that last minute hash! I served it with a green tossed salad and thick-sliced bread and butter; for dessert, vanilla ice cream with toppings and Irish coffee. Here’s how I made the hash:
1 ½ lbs. ground lamb (substitute ground beef if lamb isn’t your thing)
3 large potatoes, very thinly sliced for faster cooking
1 16 oz. bag frozen peas & carrots mix
2 Tbsp. dehydrated minced onions
1/2 c. warm water
1 to 2 tsp. dried rosemary
3 Tbsp. cooking oil (your preference; I used light olive oil)
Salt and pepper to taste
Soak the onions in 1/2 c. warm water. In a 10″ skillet with deep sides, brown the ground lamb and 1 tsp. rosemary in 1 Tbsp. cooking oil until done. Thinly slice the potatoes while the lamb is cooking. Remove the meat to a platter. Sauté the potatoes in 2 Tbsp. cooking oil for 10-12 minutes or desired tenderness, turning often. Add the cooked meat to the potatoes. Add the vegetables. Drain the onions and add to the skillet. Stir thoroughly. Cover and simmer over med heat until the vegetables are done. Add salt & pepper to taste. Add more rosemary if needed. Measure ½ tsp. Crush it in your hand and add to the skillet. Stir it thoroughly and taste. If it needs more rosemary, repeat the previous step using another ½ tsp. Simmer uncovered for another 5 minutes. Serve warm. Serves 4 adults. Total time: about 30 minutes