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Author Notes: Recently on a cold night, I was hungry for something healthy yet hearty, full of flavor but not overly saucy or troublesome. I had a bunch of carrots and some sunchokes in the fridge as well as a potato that was sprouting in the pantry. I had bought a leek earlier that day, and with these ingredients in mind, so too did the idea of a savory dinner hash. With leeks, I also love mustard, and with mustard, I love smoked salmon. Et voila!
My hubby, who doesn't love smoked salmon, thought the veggie hash would also be good as a base for pork or rabbit loin with a mustard sauce. —em-i-lis
For the root veggie hash
- 1 medium-large leek, cleaned, trimmed, halved lengthwise, white and light green parts sliced into half moons
- 1 bunch carrots, tops removed and reserved, carrots peeled and chopped into 1/2? cubes
- 1 russet potato, scrubbed and chopped into 1/2? cubes
- 1 medium sunchoke, scrubbed and chopped into 1/2? cubes
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds, toasted
- 1 scant tablespoon country Dijon mustard
- 1/3 cup smoked salmon, chopped
For the carrot top pesto
- 1/4 bunch carrot tops, washed, large stems removed and discarded
- 1 small clove garlic, peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
- extra-virgin olive oil
- In a 12? skillet set over medium high heat, pour 2-3 T EVOO (you want to almost coat the bottom with a thin layer of oil) and add the butter. When the butter is melted, add the leek, carrots, potato and sunchoke and toss to coat. Cook 10-15 minutes until the veggies are getting soft. Can you spear the carrots with a knife?
- If so, add the mustard seeds and mustard and stir to combine. Lower the heat and cover. Keep checking- you don’t want mushy veggies. When they are still crisp but no longer raw in any way, stir in the chopped smoke salmon. Cover, remove from heat, and set aside while you make the pesto.
- In a mini-prep food processor (a very small one) or the equivalent, add the carrot tops, garlic clove, sugar, toasted pine nuts and a good swirl of EVOO. Process until coarsely chopped and combined.
- Spoon the veggie hash into a serving bowl and top with the carrot top pesto. Serve warm.