Recipe: Southwest Chicken Hash, by Adam Romo
The Cracker Box opened its doors on May 10, 1980 and since then has cracked more eggs and brewed more coffee than anyone can count. Owner Jerry Massad’s goal back then: Serve the best breakfast around. Now, nearly four decades later, the “Box” continues to serve up piping hot, hearty, and made from scratch breakfasts and lunches seven days a week. Favorites include the Soon to be Famous home-style spuds, squeezed to order juices, the Original Joe Moore, Eggs Benedict and House-made Hash. The menu has also grown to include freshly made salads and healthy fish entrees.
While Jerry remains majority owner, he handed over the reins to the kitchen to Adam Romo 15 years ago. Adam joined the Box after working in several well regarded Los Angeles area kitchens. While keeping the core menu true to its original concept, he’s added creative daily and weekly specials. Adam says he loves working in the open kitchen and being able to chat with customers. Those conversations often lead to customer inspired dishes. While Jerry’s House-made Hash is a longtime favorite and always sells out quickly, Adam has created a twist on it with his Southwest Chicken Hash featured here:
Southwest Chicken Hash
1 roasted chicken
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 pasilla peppers, skin removed
1 or 2 jalapeno peppers, seeds removed
1 white onion
1 tablespoons paprika
2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon onion powder
1 cup chicken stock, plus more for finishing
4-5 potatoes, cooked and diced
Salt and pepper
Start by cooking your potatoes. Chopped potatoes tossed in salted boiling water does the trick, cook until tender. Next roast the pasillas: you can do this in the oven/broiler, however Adam likes to do it on the stove top to get a good char. This will also aid in removing the skin. Remove the skin and core, then dice, and set aside along with your chopped onions, jalapenos, and garlic. Pull meat from the chicken (light and dark meat alike) and dice up to your preferred size. In a large mixing bowl (or pot if you need) mix all ingredients, including chicken stock. Drizzle with olive oil to coat and season with salt and pepper. All that’s left to do is cook it up with a little butter or cooking oil to get it a little crisp. Top with cilantro and eggs of your choice and enjoy!
Don’t be afraid to throw this tasty concoction in a tortilla with a squeeze of lime for a fun taco twist!
The Cracker Box regularly tops numerous “Best of” lists, including being voted Best in the West by readers of AAA’s Via Magazine. The Box is open daily from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Adam Romo joined the Cracker Box team in 2004 from Los Angeles. Born and raised in Southern California, he began working in restaurant kitchens when he was just 13 years old scrubbing pots and pans in a group home cafeteria. After graduating high school Adam went on to work in a popular bakery, a Santa Maria style barbecue company where he earned open wood grilling skills and eventually a caterer for Sony Studios. When he’s not at the helm of the Cracker Box kitchen Adam enjoys tinkering with his cars and playing bass in his band.