Meat "debris" is something we saw on menus when we lived in New Orleans. It is a Louisiana invention (we're assuming), typically made from crusty slivers of meat that fall into the bottom of the pan while you're cooking a beef or pork roast. For our version, inspired by a brunch item at the amazing Dante's Kitchen in New Orleans, we put our debris over fried eggs. Where'd we get the meat? Well, it's more of the leftovers from that pork shoulder we showed you earlier this week...
Ideally, this dish would be served over poached eggs, maybe sitting on top of a piece of crusty, buttered bread. We're not great at poaching eggs, and we don't own one of these (or these or these) to make it easier, so we went with fried. If you can poach an egg, though, this pork debris is wonderful on top of them.
One key to making this dish come together quickly is dicing your vegetables very small. You want your onions to get soft and the potatoes to get a little crispy.
We added some of our original braising liquid with the soft, stewed tomatoes. It had congealed in the fridge, so we just scooped some out and dumped it in to keep the pork and vegetables from getting dry. If you don't have any of the braising sauce left, just use some canned, diced tomatoes.
Eggs with Pork "Debris"
Serves 3 to 4
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 pound small new potatoes (about 5 or 6), diced
1/2 of a green bell pepper, diced
1/2 of a medium yellow onion, diced
1/3 of a jalapeño pepper, minced
1 1/2 cups shredded pork shoulder, roughly chopped
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup pork braising liquid with stewed tomatoes (or 1/2 cup of canned, diced tomatoes in their juice)
6 to 8 eggs
Salt and pepper
Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in a large (12 or 14-inch) frying pan. Add the potatoes, season with salt and pepper, and cook until almost translucent, about 5 to 6 minutes. Add the bell pepper, onion, and jalapeño, and season again with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the vegetables are soft and the potatoes begin to brown, about 15 minutes. You'll need to stir the vegetables frequently so that they don't stick and burn. You want some brown bits to stick to the bottom of the pan, but if the mixture is too dry, you can add another splash of oil.
Add the pork and stir to combine. Increase the heat slightly and add the chicken broth (you can also use water). Scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan and stir until the liquid is almost evaporated, which should only take a minute or two. Add the tomatoes, reduce the heat, and cook until everything is heated through.
Fry the eggs, two at a time, in a non-stick pan with a splash of olive oil or a tablespoon of butter. Serve two eggs topped with a scoop of debris. Season with hot sauce, if desired.
• How to Cook (and Shred) a Pork Shoulder (our original recipe)
• Rigatoni with Shredded Pork in Mustard Cream Sauce (leftover idea #1)
(Images: Elizabeth Passarella)