Sunday, January 30, 2011

Shepherd's Pie

This recipe uses both ground lamb and ground beef, however you could use just one or the other.  It's a great thing to make with left over mashed potatoes.  This recipe makes a large pan.  If you want a smaller amount, cut ingredients in half and it should be about right for a deep dish pie plate or an 8x8 baking dish.
1 lb ground lamb
1 lb ground chuck or ground beef
1 package frozen peas
1 package frozen carrots
1 package frozen pearl onions
3 cups lamb or beef gravy
6 cups mashed potatoes

Preheat oven to 400°
Brown meat in a little oil in a skillet, seasoning with salt and pepper while browning.  While meat is cooking, heat the onions in the microwave for about 5 minutes.  Mix together all the ingredients except potatoes.  Place mixture into greased pan and top with mashed potatoes, spreading the potatoes all over the top until smooth.  Place pan onto sheet pan and bake for 30 minutes at 400°.  Remove from oven and let stand for 10-15 minutes before serving.
Serve with baguette bread for sopping up the extra juice.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lamb Time

It's Time for Lamb! 
This week I'll be picking up our lamb from Jordandal Farms.  Each year we order a full lamb and it never lasts as long as you think it would.  It's fantastic, local, pasture raised, antibiotic free Icelandic lamb.   We've tried lamb from all the local producers and believe the lamb raised at Jordandal is the best available locally.
Beast and I will start posting lamb recipes as we cook.  If you've never had lamb, you really ought to try it.  We got hooked when in Australia and learned some basic ways to prepare lamb as they do in Oz.
I always ask for all the bones so I can make stock.  It's super easy and very healthy.
Lamb Stock:
Roast 3-5 lbs lamb bones in the oven at 325° for about 3 hours.  Allow bones to cool and discard any excess fat.  Place roasted bones in a stock pot with cold water and bring to a boil over medium heat.  Once the water boils, strain off the water to remove excess grease, then cover with cold water once again, add approximately 3 Tbsp Kosher salt and bring to a boil once again over medium heat.  Simmer over medium-low heat for about 3 hours, or until bones are clean.  Strain broth 3 times to remove any excess sediment, then add 1 large onion, chopped, 2 carrots, chopped and 2-3 stalks celerey chopped, season with salt and pepper, add 1-2 bay leaves and then bring to a boil over medium heat and continue to simmer over medium-low heat for 45 minutes.  Strain broth and cool.  Broth can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 7 days or frozen for up to 6 months...if you can resist it that long!  Use the lamb broth as you would beef broth in recipes, or use it as a base for scrumptious soups, like Vegetable Barley Soup.