I love having breakfast at a diner. While a chain restaurant (Bob Evans, Perkins, IHOP) is good, there is nothing like finding a joint…a slop house…a diner. You drive up to it and may find that it is a hole in the wall. The open sign may be handwritten. The register is likely at the counter and the space behind the counter is crammed with items taking every available inch of space. If you are lucky, the menu is on the wall with names like “Frank’s special” and “Garbage Omelette”. The “special” should never be more than $3.49 and your choice of toast is included. If you walk in and there isn’t a line of hashbrowns on the grill, you’re in the wrong place.
The first time in a joint like this is a test. While there may be good items on the menu (gyro omelette, chili and eggs), I scan for corned beef hash (CBH) and eggs. This is my “go-to” dish to test if the place is a real diner or just going through the motions. For those who are unfamiliar, CBH is simply bits of corned beef, potatoes and occasionally onions. While not a tough dish, minor variations matter.
Let’s say they bring this out.
There is a place that I will sometimes stop on my way into the office to pick up breakfast that really does it right. They make their own corned beef and every day make hash.
The have small chunks of corned beef and diced potatoes. Fried up to perfection!
When you speak of corned beef in Cleveland, one and only one restaurant comes up, Slyman’s. While a joint itself, it has hosted presidents and hundreds of Hollywood and sports legends over the years. Every year on St. Patrick’s day, they sell thousands of pounds of corned beef sandwiches. Their CBH is fantastic.
While I don’t often make it at home, I insure I have extra ingredients left over from the Irish Egg Rolls to make some. This is deli corned beef sliced thin and diced, and shredded hash browns. Yum!