Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Menu for 2/15/2011 - Beef and Potato Pie (Dude2)

Beef and Potato Pie, from Seven Fires. Sweet peas braised in butter for the veggies, and some local red wine for the refreshments. I substituted organic canned tomatoes for the fresh tomatoes in the recipe, and forgot to put in the boiled eggs (they made a nice side dish though, c'est la vie). Overall I'd say the recipe was very tasty, and it was amenable to being made in a kitchen with almost no gear -- we are moving right now so we are "house camping." It makes cooking good food that much more interesting.

The potatoes were thickened with egg yolks, which is something I hadn't seen before. After spreading them over the top of the filling in the cast iron skillet and decorating the top with some lines and grooves, you toss the whole mess in the oven for a while to brown and further dry the potatoes on top to form a nice firm layer. All in all, it was very good and I'll have to record it as a useful technique.

The little one liked the pie, but was not too keen on peas this time. She's not feeling well though, so that might explain it. I'd add this recipe to my list of things to do again, especially during cold weather. Thumbs up.

About and hour and a half total cooking time:

Beef and Potato Pie (adapted from Seven Fires -- about 8 - 10 servings):
  1. 2 lbs grass fed ground beef
  2. 1 bay leaf
  3. 2 tsp cumin
  4. 1 cup dry red wine
  5. 1 can organic diced tomatoes
  6. 1 Tbsp spanish paprika
  7. 1 tsp dried rosemary
  8. 1 tsp dried oregano
  9. 2 medium onions, chopped
  10. 2 carrots, chopped
  11. 1 Tbsp dry mustard
  12. 1 cup sliced kalamata olives
Potato Topping:
  1. About 6 small potatoes (enough to make mashed potatoes to cover the pie)
  2. 3/4 to 1 cup whole raw grass fed milk
  3. 4 egg yolks from pastured hens
Put some olive oil in a large cast iron skillet and put the onions and carrots in to soften and brown slightly. After about 5 minutes of that, add the beef, chopping and stirring it to make it a fairly fine texture. Add the wine and let it simmer a few minutes to lose the alcohol, then add everything else, stir, and simmer slowly until most of the liquid reduces. While it's reducing, make the potatoes:

Boil the potatoes until they are very soft, then mash them with the milk to make creamy mashed potatoes. Add the egg yolks, mix well, and layer on top of the meat mixture in the cast iron skillet. Decorate the top with grooves and whatnot, then put it in the oven at 375 until the top is firm and the potatoes start to brown. After that, it's ready to eat.

Warning: it will bubble and make a mess in your oven, so put the skillet on top of something to catch the drips. Also, my 10 inch Griswold skillet was just BARELY big enough to hold all this, so go a size up if you can.

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