Spiced Brunch Hash

I don't think there's a better way to spend a Sunday morning than with friends, enjoying a long and lazy brunch.  

Serves 4

Spice Mix
1tsp Szechuan pepper
2 cloves
2 star anise
1/2tsp fennel
3/4tsp sumac
1/2tsp cinnamon

650g butternut squash or sweet potato, peeled and cubed
2 red onions, peeled and cut into wedges
250g puy lentils
2 leeks, trimmed and sliced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and diced
100g Cavelo Nero, kale or spinach
150g peas
Olive oil

Sea salt & cracked black pepper
4 free range eggs


- Preheat oven to 180C

- To make the spice mix: grind all ingredients in a spice grinder or pestle and mortar until you have a powder somewhere between coarse and fine.

- Place the squash and onion into a large ovenproof pan.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with 2tsp of the spice mix.  Roast for 40 minutes or until soft and beginning to caramalise.

- Whilst the squash is cooking, place the lentils in a saucepan with double the water (cold) and gently boil until soft or for 25-30 minutes, or as per the packet instructions.  Drain and set aside.

- Remove the squash from the oven and turn it off.  Place the pan on the stovetop and set a medium heat.  Add a little more olive oil (if necessary) along with the leeks, garlic, Cavelo Nero and 1tsp of the spice mix.  Gently fry until soft, stirring every now and then. 

- Add the cooked lentils and peas, stir and then press down with the back of the spoon/slice.  Allow to fry, as you would bubble and squeak, until it begins to caramalise at the bottom, before hashing up with the spoon and pressing down again, allowing it to carmalise some more.  Repeat until desired level of caramelisation is reached.  Season to taste.

- Crack the eggs on top of the hash then place a lid on the pan, allowing the eggs to cook for approx 4. minutes.

- Serve for a long and lazy brunch, whilst the yolks are still soft.

This recipe was created for Eight Hour Studio -  'Rest'.