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Red Flannel Hash combines corned beef and vegetables with red beets and a handful of other ingredients to create a fantastic, simple breakfast hash.
What better way to use up leftover New England Boiled Dinner than Red Flannel Hash? In fact – we often cook up extra corned beef, just to be sure we have enough leftovers for this delicious recipe.
In addition to the leftover corned beef and vegetables from your dinner, you’ll need red beets – which give this easy breakfast its distinctive red color and name. (Don’t worry, the beet flavor is not overwhelming at all.) Worcestershire sauce and a few other simple seasonings lend a savory flavor to this crispy hash, and it’s perfect to serve with eggs.
This recipe does not need to be complicated, just keep it simple. The meat and vegetables from the boiled dinner are already very flavorful so all you really need to do is add cooked beets and fry in a pan to get a nice crust.
Why is it called Red Flannel Hash?
Some sources say that the red and gold patchwork appearance of the beets, corned beef, and other vegetables resembles the plaid of red flannel.
There are also some other tales floating around about a Colonial-era wife who put her husband’s red flannels in the hash after an argument. And other centering around troops getting so desperately hungry in the middle of a Vermont winter that they made hash out of their red flannels. (I’m not sure about either of these theories!)
Why You’ll Love Red Flannel Hash
- It’s a delicious way to use up leftovers from a boiled dinner.
- Serve this for breakfast, brunch or “brinner” (aka breakfast for dinner).
- You can make it ahead of time, then reheat when ready to serve.
Key ingredients and Substitutions
- Red Beets – Buy fresh red beets if you can. Their natural earthy flavor is fantastic, plus the beets won’t become overcooked in the hash. While canned could be substituted if fresh isn’t available, note that they are already cooked in the can so they may get a little mushier as the hash cooks.
- Fat – Use a flavor combination of pancetta or bacon along with olive oil and butter.
- Onions and Garlic – Use a sweet onion (such as Vidalia) and fresh garlic. You can use yellow or red onion for a stronger flavor, but we liked the sweeter onion in this hash the best.
- Leftover New England Boiled Dinner – See our recipe here. The majority of the hash will come from leftovers including cooked corned beef, potatoes, and a combination of any other cooked vegetables from your boiled dinner such as the carrots, turnip, parsnips or yellow beets. We don’t include the cabbage as it will can give the hash a wetter texture.
- Seasonings – Dried thyme, black pepper and Worcestershire sauce complete the flavor profile. The Worcestershire sauce, in particular, adds a distinctive taste
- Eggs – Serve with freshly cooked eggs, fried or poached
Chef’s Tip – Use a cast iron skillet to cook this hash. You’ll want to be able to heat the pan to a very high temperature for browning and achieving the crispy texture.
Special supplies needed
- Large bowl to mix the hash
- Large cast iron skillet
- Saute pan to cook the eggs
How do I make Red Flannel Hash?
- Peel, cube and cook the red beets. (Use food-safe latex gloves if you have them to prevent your hands from staining red.)
- Measure out meat and vegetables from your boiled dinner, then place in a large bowl with cooked beets.
- Sauté pancetta or bacon until crisp in a cast iron skillet, and then sauté onions and garlic in the rendered pork fat.
- Stir cooked onions and garlic into the bowl with the other ingredients and add seasonings.
- Melt butter in cast iron skillet. Pour in hash mixture to cook, turning to crisp up.
- Cook eggs in a separate pan. Then serve over portions of the crispy hash.
Frequently asked Questions
Can I make Red Flannel Hash ahead of time? Yes. We made this the night before and crisped it up the next morning for breakfast.
How do I store leftovers? Store leftovers refrigerated for up to three days.
How do I reheat leftovers? This is best reheated in a cast iron skillet with a little butter or oil.
Can I freeze? Cooked potatoes do not freeze very well and become soggy once thawed. It will still taste delicious after thawing, but the texture will be mushy.
You may enjoy these other beef recipes:
- New England Boiled Dinner (Corned Beef and Cabbage)
- Oven-Roasted Horseradish Beef Brisket
- Corned Beef Breakfast Hash
- Italian Braised Brisket
- Slow Cooker Barbecue Beef Brisket
1 1/2–2 pounds fresh red beets (about 2 cups after peeling, trimming and cooking)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup pancetta, diced
5 tablespoons butter, divided
1 cup sweet onion, diced
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups cooked diced potatoes leftover from your boiled dinner
1 1/2 cups cooked diced other vegetables (mixed carrots, turnip, yellow beets or parsnips)
2 pounds cooked corned beef cut into bite sized pieces
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Eggs, cooked any way you’d like, for serving
Trim, peel and cube the beets then boil in water for about 20 minutes until tender. Drain, rinse and drain again. Set aside.
In a cast iron skillet over medium high heat, place the one tablespoon of oil and once hot, add pancetta and cook until crisp, about 2-3 minutes.
Add one tablespoon of the butter along with the onions and saute for three minutes.
Stir in the garlic then remove the pan from heat.
In a large bowl, place cooked beets, cooked diced potato, cooked diced vegetables, cooked corned beef, black pepper, Worcestershire sauce and the contents of the skillet. Stir to combine.
Heat skillet to medium high and once the pan is smoking hot, add all of the remaining butter.
Soon as the butter melts, add all of the hash and press down with a spatula.
Cook about 10-15 minutes (adjusting heat as needed), turning occasionally to crisp and brown both sides. (don’t worry about trying to flip evenly)
While hash heats and crisps, cook eggs to your liking in a separate saute pan.
Portion hash onto plates and top with the cooked eggs.
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