Monday, November 28, 2011

Shepard's Pie...

We made Shepard's Pie for dinner and we really, really like it. Well, the kiddo and I like it. We were the only people home to taste it. Usually, my husband likes more complicated dishes. He's not a typical casserole lover. I have a feeling he would like this version though. The taste of the meat reminds me of a dish that his mom makes with beef cooked with onions, carrots and garlic and stirred into rice with pine nuts and currents.

I compiled this recipe from a variety of sources, including and a short Gordan Ramsay video. Ramsay says shred everything--the carrots, onion and garlic--right into the beef. Then, those ingredients sort of melt into the beef creating a really delicious flavour. Grating is fabulously easy too! Way better than chopping onions. Ramsay also added wine with the broth if you feel so inclined.

After dinner, my daughter came and whispered in my ear. "I have a secret for you. Please, please, please make that 100 times more. It was so yummy." It has all her favourite things: mashed potatoes, beef, carrots, ketchup, peas.

(Update: When my husband tried it, he said it needs more salt (which he says of everything) but otherwise he liked it too.)


potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1-2 tbsp butter
1-2 tbsp milk
1/4-1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

1 lb ground beef
1-2 large carrots, grated finely
1 onion, grated coarsely
3-4 garlic cloves, grated finely
1 tbsp flour
2 tbsp ketchup
3/4 cup beef or chicken broth
1 cup frozen peas, defrosted


  1. Put potatoes in pot, add water until the potatoes are just covered, and add salt to the water. Cover with a tight fitting lid, bring to a boil on high heat, then simmer on low until the potatoes are fork tender.
  2. Meanwhile brown the beef in a fry pan until crumbled texture. (I usually cook from frozen with water and crumble my beef in the food processor.)
  3. Add in the grated carrots, onion and garlic. Continue cooking until softened.
  4. Stir in flour and cook for a minute more.
  5. Add ketchup and broth over high heat, stirring until thickened. Reduce heat.
  6. Drain and mash potatoes with salt, sour cream, butter, milk, and cheddar cheese.
  7. Next layer the meat, peas and potatoes in baking dish. Top with more cheese if desired.
  8. Bake in preheated oven at 375 F for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Rosemary Roasted Chicken with Potatoes

I spent an exuberant amount of money on a Club House Seasoning Package. The package was definitely the same price as a whole jar of spice, but only contained five teaspoons of spice. The salt was not included.

I was sold on the convenience of the pre-measured spices. Ultimately, it meant that on day when I was tired and couldn't be bothered to cook, I wouldn't have to spend a few minutes collecting various spices from my drawer and measuring them myself. And if the combination was good, the package including the recipe card, so I knew I could duplicate it again.

Well it was good. Very good. My husband raved about this dish. It will be duplicated. The original recipe called for boneless skinless chicken thighs, but I used bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs with legs. It also called for red potatoes. I used what I had.


2 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp rosemary
1 tsp dehydrated minced garlic
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 lbs chicken (I used bone-in thighs with legs.)
1 1/2 lbs potatoes, cubed

  1. Mix oil, spices and salt in bottom of a large 9x13 glass baking dish. 
  2. Add chicken and potatoes, toss to coat well.
  3. Roast in preheated 425 F oven for 30-40 minutes, turning occasionally, until the chicken is cooked and the potatoes are tender.

Inspiration: Club House seasoning package