Chop cold ROAST BEEF, or pieces of BEEFsteak; fry half an onion in a piece of butter; when the onion is brown, add the chopped BEEF; season with a little salt and pepper; moisten with the BEEF gravy, if you have any, if not, with sufficient water and a little butter; cook long enough to be hot, but no longer, as much cooking toughens the meat. An excellent breakfast dish.
Some prefer to let a crust form on the bottom and turn the hash brown side uppermost. Served with poached eggs on top.
The Whitehouse Cookbook, by Mrs. F.L. Gillette (Year 1887)