Classics, Comfort food

Meat Pies

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Happy New Year! It has been a while since I have posted.  Life in graduate school can be all consuming and with the holidays and traveling back to India, I have hardly been cooking or eating right.  So, I will try to be better this year and what better way to start off the year with a delicious, savoury and very English Meat Pie.  The recipe is pretty straightforward.  It is rich and comforting and pairs perfectly with Downton Abbey or Sherlock ! Enjoy a night on british teli with this recipe !

Ingredients:

1.5lbs of cubed stew meat

0.5 tbsp of minced garlic

1 cup diced onions

1 cup chopped mushrooms

0.5 cups of chopped carrots

0.5 cups of chopped red-skinned potatoes

1 cup chicken broth

Winter herbs of your choice, I used a spice blend from Raw Spicebar–use what you like! (Thyme, rosemary sage etc)

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Salt and Pepper to taste

2 tbsp of olive oil

3 rolls of store-bought pie crust

Method:

Heat olive oil in a pot and brown meat in batches till dark brown. Set aside.

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In the same pot add onions, garlic, mushrooms, carrots and potatoes and saute for 10mins till the vegetables start to soften.  The key here is to make sure the vegetables are fine chopped and relatively the same size.

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Add salt, peppers, herb mix and saute for another 5-10mins

Put back the meat and add the chicken stock.

Simmer till meat is tender and the filling has a thick consistency.  You do not want too much liquid since it will make for a wet and soggy pie–nobody wants that!

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Cool filling completely.

Take a 6-cup jumbo muffin pan and grease with cooking spray.

Cut out pie crust to fit into the muffin pan and leave a little bit of an overhang.

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Spoon in a generous amount of the meat filling.

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Cover with another round of cut pie dough and crimp the edges to seal thoroughly. Cut a slit in the top crust so that the steam can escape.

Bake in a 375F pre-heated oven for 45-6omins till crust is golden

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Serve hot !!!

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Lunch, Sides

Saffron Quinoa with Black Beans and Sage Roasted Butternut Squash

Ingredients:

1 cup tri-colored quinoa, rinsed

2 cups low sodium chicken broth

1 pinch of saffron

1 can of black beans

3 cups of cubed butternut squash

2 tsp of dry sage

1 tsp of chilli powder

2 tbsp of olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Add rinsed quinoa to chicken broth and saffron and pinch of salt.  Cook quinoa.

Once quinoa is cooked, add rinsed black beans.

In the mean time toss squash in olive oil, salt, pepper, sage and chilli powder and spread on a cookie sheet

Roast at 400F for 20mins, till cooked through and golden.

Toss squash with quinoa and black beans and garnish with chopped scallions.

Classics, Comfort food, Dinner, Meat, Stew

Beef Short Ribs

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Hello readers ! It has been quite a while since I have posted.  The last few months have been a whirlwind with the holidays and my travel back home to India.  It took me a while to settle back into the pace pf things and I realized that I had stopped cooking for myself and had reverted back to the old habit of eating caned soup and vending machine granola bars ! The very thing I wanted to avoid and which is why I started writing this blog !!!!!!  Anyway ! I am back and here with our Valentine’s Day meal ! Nothing says love like a big bowl of rich beef stew !  Thank you Ina Garten for the recipe !

Ingredients

6 beef short ribs, trimmed of fat
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 small fennel, fronds, stems, and core removed, large-diced
1 leek, cleaned and large-diced, white part only
1 1/2 cups chopped onion (2 onions)
4 cups large-diced celery (6 large stalks)
2 carrots, peeled and large-diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 (750-ml) bottle Cotes du Rhone or other dry red wine
Fresh rosemary sprigs
Fresh thyme sprigs
1 tablespoon brown sugar
6 cups beef stock
Directions

Season short ribs with salt and pepper and fry in a large Dutch oven till  golden brown and set aside.

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In the remaining oil add the fennel, leek, onion, celery and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the tomato paste and wine, bring to a boil and cook over high heat until the liquid is reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Tie the rosemary and thyme together with kitchen twine and add to the pot.IMG_0568

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Place the roasted ribs on top of the vegetables in the Dutch oven and add the brown sugar and beef stock. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Cover the Dutch oven and cook for 2 hours or until the meat is very tender.

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Carefully remove the short ribs from the pot and set aside. Discard the herbs and skim the excess fat. Cook the vegetables and sauce over medium heat for 20 minutes, until reduced. Put the ribs back into the pot and heat through. Serve with the vegetables and sauce

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cookies

Diabetic Ginger Molasses cookies–Christmas Cookies #6

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    • nonstick       cooking spray nonstick cooking spray
    • 1/3       cup margarine, softened ( not spread or tub product)
    • 1/3       cup Splenda brown sugar blend, packed
    • 1       teaspoon baking soda
    • 1       teaspoon ground ginger ( or to taste)
    • 3/4       teaspoon ground cinnamon ( or to taste)
    • 1/4       cup Egg Beaters egg substitute
    • 1/4       cup dark molasses
    • 1       1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2       cup whole wheat flour
    • 1/4       cup Splenda granular
    • 1       teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

  1. Spray cookie sheet with      nonstick spray; set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat      the margarine with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30      seconds.
  3. Add the brown sugar, baking      soda, ginger, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; beat until combined.
  4. Beat in Eggbeaters and      molasses.
  5. Beat in as much of the      all-purpose and whole wheat flour as you can with the mixer.
  6. Stir in any remaining flour      with a wooden spoon.
  7. Cover and chill in the      refrigerator for 1 hour.
  8. Shape dough into 1-inch      balls.
  9. Combine the granulated      Splenda and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.
  10. Roll balls in      Splenda-cinnamon mixture
  11. Place 2 inches apart on      prepared cookie sheet.
  12. Bake in a preheated 350F oven      for 10 to 11 minutes or until set and tops are cracked.
  13. Remove from cookie sheet.
  14. Cool on a wire rack.
  15. Makes about 4 dozen

 

 

 

 

Cookies

Caramel Stuffed Pumpkin Cookies–Christmas Cookie #2

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Ingredients
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 + 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
1/3 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 + 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons + 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (14 ounce) bag Kraft Caramels or Rolos (unwrap about 30 of them)
Instructions
1. Line 2 large cookie sheets with silpats or parchment paper.
2. In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer beat the butter and 1 cup sugar together on medium speed 2 minutes. Add the pumpkin and vanilla beat on low 2 more minutes.
3. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, cloves, ginger, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add to the sugar mixture and beat on low just until combined. Refrigerate 30 minutes.
4. After 30 minutes scoop up very slightly rounded tablespoons of the dough, stick a caramel in the center and roll into a ball. Set on one of the parchment lined cookie sheets – it’s ok if they’re crowded just try not to let them touch. Repeat until all the cookie dough is used up. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.
5. When ready to bake preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk the remaining 1/2 cup sugar with 2 tablespoons cinnamon in a wide, shallow bowl.
6. Working in batches, roll the cookies in the cinnamon sugar and bake 2 inches apart for 14 minutes. Refrigerate the unbaked cookies in between batches.
7. Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheets. Store in tightly covered containers up to a week

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