Saturday, April 2, 2011
We fled south last weekend, tired of the ever-present rain and grey skies of Vancouver. I don't know if it's been a particularly grey winter this year, but it sure as hell feels like it. However, we should have known that if you're fleeing bad weather, don't stay in the Pacific Northwest:
Portland was just as grey, just as cold, and even more windy than V-town. However, it had a few things going for it: it wasn't home, so it had the novelty factor going for it, its downtown is very easy to walk around, and in spite of the grey skies, it's a lovely town with a million restaurants. What could be better?
(An aside, if you'll indulge me: why does Portland have much, much, MUCH cooler movie theatres than Vancouver? Are we really so lame, so apathetic, that we let stupid chains like Cineplex take over all our theatres? Well yes, sadly, we are. When we were in the Land of the Free, we went to a fabulous place called the Living Room Theatres... it was a bar, a restaurant, and several tiny, comfy movie theatres. We lazed in fabulous chairs, alcoholic beverages in hand, and enjoyed a lovely movie experience. And this seemed to be the norm down there rather than the exception. Vancouver NEEDS this.)
We walked miles (we took the train down, so we kinda had to. But I love walking, and J was pretty game). When it got really gross out, we retreated to cool indoor places like OMSI, the huge science centre/planetarium/Omnimax/submarine on the other side of the river. We spent a day scoping out the shops (and bought multi-tools at REI, the US equivalent of MEC). We strolled from one restaurant to the next until our stomachs protested. We relaxed in our beautiful downtown hotel. All in all, it was a delightful 4 days.
Now we're back, and my stomach tells me I should go back on my no-wheat, no-dairy no-fun diet immediately. With costume fittings for my summer job looming, I have to agree. Here's something that fits the bill, although it's unlikely that I'll lose any weight eating it. I justify this breakfast by saying that there was a bag of fingerling potatoes sprouting in a cupboard, and I had to use them up. But really, it's just a way of making my holiday seem as if it's not quite over yet.
I had a version of this at the Benson Hotel in Portland. The salmon was pale, smoked and mixed right in with the wonderful, slightly too greasy potatoes. My version uses Indian Candy (because that was what was in the fridge), and my potatoes didn't really "hash". It was still really good, though. (And no wheat or dairy to be found!)
Chop some onions, garlic, and whatever herbs you may want to throw in (I had cilantro, so that's what I used).
Toss it in a pan with some olive oil, and stir until the onions are translucent.
Meanwhile, boil some potatoes.
When the potatoes are soft, add them to the pan, along with some more olive oil, salt and pepper (I like Fleur de Sel better than table salt), and maybe a couple of mushrooms.
Let it all cook until the potatoes are getting crispy on the outside. Then add the salmon and some of the herbs.
Finally, slide a poached or fried egg onto the top, and garnish with more salt, more pepper, and the rest of those herbs. Take it to the table and break the egg yolk so that it covers the hash with warm yellow yolk. Bon Appetit!