Sunday, January 3, 2010

First Irish Dish of the New Year

So today we went grocery shopping.....and loaded up on the potatoes!! We decided to make the following dishes:
guniess irish stew
shepard pie
carrot soup
irish breakfast
irish rarebit
strawberry scones
bangers and mash
soda bread
cheese stuffed herb chicken
boiled bacon & cabbage
potato soup

It was a bit tricky for some things, for example one recipe called for Irish Bacon....and that couldn't be found, but we did find Irish butter. Also, we could not locate Dubliner cheese or the right type of lamb, so there will be a few dishes we still need to shop for.

Tonights first Irish dish will be Shepard Pie. I am going to make the mash potatoes from scratch. There are a lot of different ways to make Shepard Pie. I am going to combine a few recipes I found, due to the fact that I liked some parts of each recipe.

So here are the ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs ground round beef
1 onion chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1-2 cups vegetables - chopped carrots, corn, peas (I used 1 can of carrots, 2 carrots, and a handful of frozen peas)
1 1/2 - 2 lbs potatoes (3 big ones)
8 tablespoons butter (1 stick) (I mixed a bit of Irish butter in)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons sour cream or softened cream cheese
1/2 cup cream, for a lighter version substitute vegetable or chicken broth (I also added a little splash of buttermilk for extra creamy potatoes)
2 tablespoons flour
1 sprig of thyme
Salt, pepper, other seasonings of choice

1 Pre-heat oven to 200C/400°F.
2 Saute carrots in the olive oil until starting to get tender.
3 Add in the onions and saute for a minute or two then add the meat.
4 Season with black pepper and thyme.
5 Cook until browned then drain fat.
6 Add the butter and peas.
7 Sprinkle with flour and stir through.
8 Add wine and Worcestershire sauce.
9 Allow to reduce down until you have a thick meaty gravy (you can add beef stock if desired). Season to your taste.
10 Remove from heat. Grease an oven proof dish (I used a 9x13 and to grease it I used some spray butter).
11 Drain potatoes and pour them into a bowl. Combine sour cream, egg yolk and cream. Melt butter in microwave. Add the cream mixture and butter into potatoes and mash until potatoes are almost smooth.
12 Spoon or pipe the mashed potatoes over top. Brush with egg (you can also sprinkle cheese on top)
13 Bake for about 20 minutes or until the potato is nice and browned on top.

Ok well I will let you guys know how it is once it gets out of the oven!!!

Here are a few updates once I started making it:

First, I did not peel my potatoes (I like the skins), however, this was not a good move---it took a really long time to make the potatoes creamy enough.

Second, I forgot to add the thyme at the right step, I ended up adding it during the reduction stage, I also added a bit of thyme & rosemary to the potato mix. I also forgot to brush to top with egg. Hopefully this will be an ok mistake. I also added cheddar cheese sprinkles to the top before I baked it---it's in the oven now...15 minutes till chow time!!!! (side note, it took around 26-27 minutes to bake & I had to use the broiler to make it brown on top---this may have been the case due to the fact, I forgot to brush egg on top....)

Ok, so the jury is back with a verdict!! Fred said he gave it a 10--then a 9 saying that it couuuuuuuld be more flavorful, but that it was good....though he did grumble about the fact I didn't have biscuits with it..and he said that it was more like a side dish....I tried to explain to him that it was an all-in-one dish--that the side dishes were included into the main dish....but you know boys!!

I personally thought it rocked!!! Though Fredric was right, it could have been more flavorful, maybe that was the result of not adding the thyme at the right stage, or maybe I could have added a little more than I did....

I am debating on getting out of bed early tom to make strawberry scones for breakfast...but we will see!!

1 comment:

  1. You need a good amount of salt and pepper to make it hold its flavor.