What are you cooking today?

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Im sure everyone knows how to cook a Shepherds/ Cottage pie...but here goes...Thats what I just cooked

 

Easy Shepherd's Pie Recipe

INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 lbs ground round beef

1 onion chopped

1-2 cups frozen peas

1 1/2 - 2 lbs potatoes (3 big ones)

8 tablespoons butter (1 stick)

1/2 cup beef broth

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Salt, pepper, other seasonings of choice

METHOD

1 Peel and quarter potatoes, boil in salted water until tender (about 20 minutes).

2 While the potatoes are cooking, melt 4 Tablespoons butter (1/2 a stick) in large frying pan.

3 Sauté onions in butter until tender over medium heat (10 mins). If you are adding vegetables, add them according to cooking time. Put any carrots in with the onions. Add corn or peas either at the end of the cooking of the onions, or after the meat has initially cooked.

 

4 Add ground beef and sauté until no longer pink. Add salt and pepper. Add worcesterchire sauce. Add half a cup of beef broth and cook, uncovered, over low heat for 10 minutes, adding more beef broth as necessary to keep moist.

5 Mash potatoes in bowl with remainder of butter, season to taste.

 

6 Place beef and onions in baking dish. Distribute mashed potatoes on top. Rough up with a fork so that there are peaks that will brown nicely. You can use the fork to make some designs in the potatoes as well.

7 Cook in 400 degree oven until bubbling and brown (about 30 minutes). Broil for last few minutes if necessary to brown.

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My favourite soup at the moment ;

 

8oz pumpkin/squash

8oz onion

8oz carrot

 

Chop vegetables and put in about half litre chicken/veg stock and salt. Pressure cook 6 mins or simmer till soft. Add 8oz skinned tomato and a few tbls. fresh basil. Blend. Add a few tbls. cream and a sprinkle of black pepper. Yum.

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Portuguese Stone Soup

 

* 8 cups homemade chicken + veg stock

* 1 pound linguiça or kielbasa sausage or Spanish chorizo,* diced

* 1 15 1/4-ounce can kidney beans, drained

* 1 pound potatoes, peeled, diced

* 1 14 1/2-ounce can diced ready-cut tomatoes

* 1/2 medium head savoy cabbage, coarsely chopped (about 4 1/2 cups)

* 2 leeks (white and light green parts only), chopped

* 2 large carrots, diced

* 1 celery stalk, chopped

* 1 small onion, chopped

* 4 garlic cloves, minced

* 1 bay leaf

* dash cumin, salt, pepper & cayenne to taste

 

*linguiça is ideal; I used Spanish chorizo as I had it on hand (and I've never seen wonderful linguiça in Germany!). Add more garlic & spice if you can't find a good chorizo.

 

Sautée onions and garlic briefly, add sausage, sautée briefly, add veggies and tomato, sautée a bit more, add the rest, bring to boil, then simmer for 2-3 hours. Leftovers often taste better the next day.

 

It's still simmering... I'm hungry!

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Because I'll be trundling about a fair bit tomorrow, am making tomorrow's dinner today (plus it tastes better on day 2): balti chicken dhansak

 

For the spice mix:

4 tbsp coriander seeds, 2tbsp part cumin seeds, about 5cm cassia bark, 2 tsp fennel seeds, 2 tsp black mustard seeds, 2 tsp green cardamom seeds, 1 tsp fenugreek seeds, 0.5 tsp wild onion seed, 6 cloves, 1 tbsp fenugreek leaves, 4 bay leaves, curry leaves if you have them, dried chilies to taste (1.5 tsp?)

Dry fry this lot, cool and grind it up.

4 tsp turmeric, 4 tsp garlic powder, 2tsp ginger powder

Add these to the ground whole spices.

 

This makes about 200g, but stores well. Alternatively get Balti spice paste from your local Asian market if they have it. Get some garam masala too while you are at it.

 

About 200g dried lentils (I'm using toor lentils, soaked according to the pack)*

Onion & garlic

300g chicken breast, chopped

3 small tomatoes, chopped

Oil to fry (I'm using Pam, sorry)

 

Pre-cook the lentils if necessary by boiling in water for the time according to the pack. You might want to add some spice mix towards the end of cooking. Not all lentils need this step so check the pack.

Heat the oil and then get about 2tbsp of the spice mix plus another 2 tsp of garam masala (or the spice pastes) going in the pan for about 30 secs. Add onion & garlic.

Add the chicken to the pan and stir fry to seal. Add the cooked drained lentils & stir to coat. Chuck in the small tomatoes now too. Add water to cover and then simmer to your liking.

Some like to add a little vinegar or lemon juice to the lentils, I generally don't but it is up to you. You could also add fresh chillies if you wanted to.

Cook until the lentils "give in" to the water (was how the guy who showed me how to make it described it) and the chicken is cooked. Balti is a more soupy style of curry so you want it saucy.

 

To serve scatter some fresh coriander on the top.

Eat from the pan using naan bread as a spoon. Beer obligatory.

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Mousse aux Chocolat

 

Dead easy: 4 eggs separated, 100g Halbbitter chocolate (Rittersport)

 

Melt chocolate over water bath, remove & stir in egg yolks plus about 1 teaspoon rum.

Whisk eggs whites stiff, fold in chocolate/egg mess, pour into 4 glass dishes & place in coll cellar for 24 hours.

 

Next day pipe some whipped cream on top with bits of chocolate & devour post-10876-1231447672.gif

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Just ate pasta with gorgonzola - not in the least bit healthy, but very comforting.

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Just threw together a nice tropical dessert.

 

Fresh pineapple, sliced into thin rings and sprinkled generously with coriander-mint sugar (mint and coriander leaves blitzed in processor with sugar). Left to sit for half an hour or so.

 

Coconut milk slightly warmed and also mixed with some sugar and a drop of vanilla.

 

A small scoop of lemon sorbet.

 

Pineapple, sorbet and then coconut milk sauce. Yum yum yum.

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Attempt at an Asian stir fry:

Thinly slice red, green and yellow peppers and spring onion

Fry in sesame oil, seasoning them with catsip (the real Asian stuff from Metro) and garam masala

Cook wok noodles in chicken broth, drain

Throw in with the peppers and toss it all together

 

Quick, easy and versatile; I'm looking forward to adding soy sprouts, mushrooms, tofu, meat, you name it.

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Making some more stock right now from roast chicken carcass and about 30 different types of veggie scraps. I need a bigger freezer...

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Very quick post-gym meal:

Flash cooked pork minute steaks, added Maille Moutarde Fin Gourmets and a spot of crème fraîche (ok it was Bridelice showing that I'd recently stocked up in France), bubbled it up and served over green beans.

Side salad with a mustard-y vinaigrette.

Belly is happy.

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Saw a nice bit of calves liver in the shops, and couldn't resist. You can bitch about availability of foodstuffs in Germany, slag off the supermarkets, and you'd be right to - but you have to giv them credit for some things, and veal liver si so much easier for me to get here than it ever was in England. Just did it super simple, butter fried in a shit heavy cast iron pan. Takes no time.

Fry one side till the colour is coming over the edges, then flip and the second side takes almost time because you've already warmed the meat through. They cut the slices a bit thin alot of the time at butchers, easy to overcook, so watch out.

I am a posh bastard, so I reduced down some beef stock by 50% to get a demi glace, added some caramelised onions, and spiked it with a few drops of marsala. Marsala and calves liver works sooo well. Couple of quenelles of mashed potatoes on the plate, couple of slives of liver, and the marsala & onion sauce. Delicious stuff. People are sometimes put off by liver, and normally that's down to once haveing been served some horrible pan fried pork liver. Gross. Calves liver though is a totally different kettle of fish. Not atall strong in flavour, lovely meaty texture. Really, really, really good stuff. Try some.

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Love it! I absolutely love eating liver...always order it at the local Greek restaurant that we go to. Your recipe sounds like the sh*t don_riina! Shame my partner doesn't eat liver. But kidneys...now that is a totally different ball game! Has anyone ever gotten hold of lamb's kidneys? My butcher couldn't source any for me :(

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Lambs kidneys are obviously very seasonal, and you have to get them ridiculously fresh, so availability might not be great. With most things lamb, your best friend is your nearest Turkish butchers - but I must admit I've not seen kidneys in mine.

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My ex's mom used to eat sweetbreads all the time (thymus, right?)... yuck! I'm trying to come around about liver, but my mom used to force us to eat it on occasion, and it was NOT good! Chicken livers are great mixed with other things... they add a good depth of flavor.

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Fantastic office lunch I just had - two pork neck steaks fried in butter in a pan with some onions and mushrooms, adding only salt, then had burger style between thick cut fresh bread. Fantastic, quick, simple, cheap and delicious and it made the kitchen here smell of frying so everyone else can enjoy it too. Wonderful! My service to my colleagues ;).

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