27 April 2009

Shepherd's Pie


In hindsight this wasn't the very best meal to make on an 81° evening, but I opted not to take the lazy route and turn leftover roast into dang quesadillas. The recipe for this version of shepherd's pie comes from an Everyday Food magazine, though I added a few twists of my own based on the rub mixture I used on the roast which added a nice flavor. Since the recipe called for water in the gravy mixture, I used the broth from the roast as well as the roasted onions, carrots, and portobello mushrooms along with fresh onions, carrots, and garlic.


While prepping these I completely spaced out and forgot to take a few shots without the mashed potato topping. I don't know why I mention this now since this picture is A.C., after cooking.


I know I could have taken a better picture, for your sake, instead of this which resembles (fill in the blank). And this I know to be true because as I was eating it I realized that the shot where the fork is in the air above the bowl with a combination of filling and topping would have made a perfect picture, but I digress.

The seasonings were spot on, and the process was definitely sped up since the meat was pre-cooked. You can make the filling a day before, as well as the mashed potatoes, and this would make a great dish to freeze for future meals (since that's what the recipe says, and since it yields 8 servings).

Recipe after the jump.



Shepherd's Pies
From Everyday Food, October 2004










for filling: for potato topping
2 pounds freshly ground lamb (or ground beef) 2 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and quarted
1 large onion, finely chopped coarse salt and ground pepper
4 carrots, coarsely chopped 1 cup milk
5 garlic cloves, minced 6 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
coarse salt and ground pepper
10 ounces frozen peas, thawed

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425°. Heat a large skillet over high heat. In two batches, cook lamb until no longer pink, about 5 minutes per batch. Transfer lam to a colander set in a bowl; let fat drain off and discard.

  2. Add 1/2 cup water to the skillet, scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon. Reduce heat to medium; add onion and carrots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes, adding garlic at 3 minutes. Stir in tomato paste. Add flour; cook, stirring, 2 minutes.

  3. Add Worcestershire sauce, 2 cups water (or beef broth), and lamb. Season with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer, until thickened, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Stir in peas; cook 1 minute. Divide among eight 8-ounce ramekins or two 9-inch glass pie dishes.

  4. Meanwhile, make potato topping. In a medium saucepan, cover potatoes with salted water by 1 inch; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until fork-tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain, return to pan on medium heat and toss until most of the excess moisture is gone.

  5. Microwave milk and butter until butter is melted and milk is heated. Mash or rice potatoes, stir in milk mixture, and season with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

  6. Spread potato topping over pies; use a fork to make peaks, and sprinkle with paprika. Bake on a baking sheet until tops are browned, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool slightly; serve.


To freeze, cool pies completely before covering with plastic wrap and freeze for up to three months. Reheat frozen pies (small or large) in a 375° oven for about an hour.

23 April 2009

GT's Whole Wheat Banana Bread


This recipe for banana bread came from a forumite on a running forum and it's going in my recipe spreadsheet.


While this recipe uses all whole wheat, the texture as dense as you'd expect.

I just deleted a sentence explaining the subtle nuances of the whole wheat coupled with a bit of nutmeg and how it compliments the banana flavor because it sounded strained, so just make the recipe because I said so and because you'll like it. :GT:






Print this recipe

GT's Whole Wheat Banana Bread

Ingredients:

3/4 c plus 2 tbsp sugar
1.5 C whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 large egg, beaten
3 smashed over-ripe Banana (me: mixed with 1 tsp lemon juice)
1/4 C melted butter
2 tbsp. milk
Optional: chopped toasted walnuts, maybe like 1/2 cup

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease an 8x4-inch loaf pan and set aside. Whisk dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix wet ingredients in a separate bowl; add to dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Note from recipe concerning thickness of batter: It's thick but it's supposed to be; you won't complain.

  2. Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for about an hour or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out cleanish. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing banana bread and letting cool on a wire rack.

21 April 2009

What I Ate on Easter Day

Breakfast


Hot cross buns from The Bread Book, spicy, slightly sweet with a pastry cross and brushed with a thinned cream cheese buttercream immediately after baking. This recipe is highly recommended.

Lunch/Dinner


Portobello risotto



Bread from The Bread Book. I make this every Easter.



Dessert



Key Lime Pie with Swiss Meringue Circle-things


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