Sunday, September 6, 2009

A bit of England...

30 minutes Shepherds Pie

2 pounds potaotes, such as russet, peeled and cubed

2 T. sour cream, or softened cream cheese

1 large egg yolk

1/2 cup cream or chicken broth

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 T. extra virgin olive oil

1 3/4 pounds ground beef or ground lamb

1 carrot, peeled and chopped

1 onion, chopped

2 T. butter

2 T. all purpose flour

1 cup beef stock or broth

2 t. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup frozen peas

1 t. sweet paprika

2 T. chopped fresh parsley leaves

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.

Raspberry Fool

1 pound raspberries

2 T. Butter

white sugar

1 pint heavy cream

Rinse and drain the raspberries and place them in a pan with butter. Cook over low heat for about five minutes, then mash them slightly with the back of the spoon, finally add sugar to taste. Set raspberries aside (or in a freezer for a few minutes) and allow them to cool. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Fold the raspberries into the cream. Allow to chill before serving. Serve with scones.

Scone Recipe

Typical English scones are light and flaky but not sweet. They are perfectly designed to accompany cream and jam.

Basic Scone Recipe:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup milk (approx.)

Mix the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles course crumbs. Stir in the egg. (If you are using one of the variations below, this is a good point to add nuts, dried fruit, chocolate chips, cheese, etc.)

Gradually add the milk until a thick dough is formed. (It may take more or less than 3/4 cup.)

Turn out the mixture onto a floured board and knead lightly. Roll out the dough to 3/4" thickness and cut into rounds with a 2" cookie cutter. Gather the trimmings and lightly knead, roll, and cut them as well.

Place the rounds about 1" apart on a lightly greased baking sheet. Brush the tops with a little beaten egg or milk. Bake in a preheated 450° oven for about 10 to 15 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm.

Makes 12 to 16 scones, depending on the recipe version used.

Variations of the Basic Scone Recipe:

  • Spiced Scones: Add enough cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and allspice to the dry ingredients to total 1/2 teaspoon.
  • Raisin Wheat Scones: Our favorite. Substitute white flour with whole wheat pastry flour or half and half white and wheat. Use brown sugar instead of white and plain yogurt instead of whole milk.
  • Buttermilk Scones: Substitute buttermilk for whole milk and add 1 tablespoon sugar to the basic recipe.
  • Walnut Scones: Add 3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts.
  • Cheddar Scones: Add 1 cup grated Cheddar cheese and 1/8 teaspoon dry mustard.
  • Dried Fruit Scones: Add 1/2 cup raisins, currants, cranberries, or chopped dried apricots.
  • Chocolate Chip Scones: Add 1/2 cup white or dark chocolate chips and 1 teaspoon vanilla to the basic recipe.
  • Lemon Scones: Add the juice and zest of 1 lemon and 1 tablespoon sugar to the basic scone recipe.


Ben & Rachel said...

I love shepherds pie. yummmmyyy!

Gina said...

You are on fire! Those scones look so yummy. I am not quite sure when I will make them though. I will just salivate for them sitting here on my couch.


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