Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Shepherd's Pie

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 30 min
Level: Easy
Serves: 4-5 servings


* 2 pounds potatoes, such as russet, peeled and cubed
* 2 tablespoons sour cream or softened cream cheese
* 1 large egg yolk
* 1/2 cup cream, for a lighter version substitute vegetable or chicken broth
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper
* 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
* 1 3/4 pounds ground beef or ground lamb
* 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
* 1 onion, chopped
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* 1 cup beef stock or broth
* 2 teaspoons Worcestershire, eyeball it
* 1/2 cup frozen peas, a couple of handfuls
* 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
* 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves


Before peeling potatoes, put pan of salted water on stove to boil. Cube peeled potatoes. Boil potatoes in salted water until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain potatoes and pour them into a bowl. Combine sour cream, egg yolk and cream. Add the cream mixture into potatoes and mash until potatoes are almost smooth.

While potatoes boil, preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil to hot pan with beef or lamb. Season meat with salt and pepper. Brown and crumble meat for 3 or 4 minutes. If you are using lamb and the pan is fatty, spoon away some of the drippings. Add chopped carrot and onion to the meat. Cook veggies with meat 5 minutes, stirring frequently. In a second small skillet over medium heat cook butter and flour together 2 minutes. Whisk in broth and Worcestershire sauce. Thicken gravy 1 minute. Add gravy to meat and vegetables. Stir in peas.

Preheat broiler to high. Fill a small rectangular casserole with meat and vegetable mixture. Spoon potatoes over meat evenly. Top potatoes with paprika and broil 6 to 8 inches from the heat until potatoes are evenly browned. Top casserole dish with chopped parsley and serve.

Posted by Debi
Recipe from Rachel Ray on Food Network.com

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pasta and Greens

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Start to Finish Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

WHEN THE AIR is crisp and the leaves begin to turn, leafy greens come into their prime. I like to buy fresh greens at my local farmers' market. Somehow, they just taste better.

I adore mustard greens. They can be as spicy hot as mustard, yet as tender as spinach. Turnip greens are great too, but if you prefer a milder green, opt for spinach, collards, or escarole. All of these greens are packed with vitamins and minerals, and they are extremely low in calories.

The following recipe can be prepared with pantry staples, greens, and a little Parmesan cheese. It's also highly adaptable. You can use prewashed or frozen greens. If you like, stir in a little cream just before serving. And remember: greens cook down to less than half their original volume. Enjoy!
-- Judy Feagin

Pasta and Greens

* 1 8-ounce package pasta
* 1/2 cup chopped onion
* 3 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 14.5-ounce can vegetable broth
* 1 pound fresh greens (mustard, turnip, spinach, kale, escarole, or collard)
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain and set aside.

In a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, saute onion and garlic in oil 2 minutes. Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Gradually add fresh greens, stirring constantly. Cover and cook 3 to 10 minutes, depending on the greens selected. Stir in cooked pasta, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve immediately.

Choosing Your Greens

Collard greens are dark, leafy greens in the cabbage family. Unlike cabbages, they don't form a head. Closely related to kale, collards taste like a cross between kale and cabbage.

Escarole is a variety of endive with broad, pale-green leaves with slightly curved edges. Milder in flavor than either Belgium endive or curly endive, escarole can be eaten raw or cooked. Peak season is June to October.

Kale has a mild cabbage-like flavor. The leaves are frilly and deep green with shades of blues and purple. Available year-round.

Mustard greens are the peppery leaves of the mustard plant. They are dark green and have a pungent flavor.

Spinach leaves are dark green and spear-shaped, and are either curled or smooth depending on the variety. Because the leaves grow so close to the ground, they need a thorough cleaning to avoid grittiness.

Turnip greens are slightly sweet when young. However, they develop a strong, sharp, slightly bitter flavor as they age. Available year-round.

- Adapted from The New Food Lover's Companion (third edition)

Cleaning Your Greens

To prepare greens, remove tough stems and discolored spots, then wash the greens at least three times in lots of cold water. Drain and roughly chop. Store greens in heavy-duty zip-top bags lined with damp paper towels up to 3 days in the refrigerator.

Posted by Debi

Friday, July 10, 2009

Cinnamon Cinnabon Recipe

By Taraleigh
Well I received a bread maker from my mom this week who brought it from my Aunt in New Jersey, whose mother from Parsippany got for her.... :) All that to say I have had alot of fun trying new recipes this week. I made these Cinnamon Rolls from a recipe called "Clone of a Cinnabon" off of http://www.allrecipes.com/ They turned out amazing actually a little bit better than Publix's Cinnamon Rolls from their bakery. See my notes underneath for some great tips. Enjoy!


1 cup warm milk (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2 eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup margarine, melted
4 1/2 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons bread machine yeast

1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, softened

1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioner's' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt


Place ingredients in the pan of the bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Select dough cycle; press Start.

After the dough has doubled in size turn it out onto a lightly floured surface, cover and let rest for 10 minutes. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon.

Roll dough into a 16x21 inch rectangle. Spread dough with 1/3 cup butter and sprinkle evenly with sugar/cinnamon mixture. Roll up dough and cut into 12 rolls. Place rolls in a lightly greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

Bake rolls in preheated oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes. While rolls are baking, beat together cream cheese, 1/4 cup butter, confectioner's' sugar, vanilla extract and salt. Spread frosting on warm rolls before serving.

Notes: If you doing have a bread maker my dough setting kneads for a while and then lets the dough rise for about an hour. I wanted these rolls to be done at a specific time so I let them rise longer than the 30 minutes in the directions and they turned out fine. I used a 9x13 glass baking dish and the middle rolls were a bit doughy after the 15 minute baking time so we ate a few from the outside and put the rest back in for a bit. I think next time I make these I will make 2 8x8 pans with six rolls each. Also if your filling runs out the bottom of the rolls while baking flip them over on a cookie sheet and all the yumminess will go right back into the rolls. :)

Posted by Taraleigh