Thursday, September 16, 2010

Bitchin' Kitchen Thursday

A word on the title: Bitchin' is a relatively archaic term nowadays, but I can dig it. Kind of takes me back to a time of awesome. A time of John Hughes, Dazed and Confused and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. While I'm on the subject, I think gangbusters, P.U.! and hootenanny should be brought back into common usage, too. Plus the alternate title "Bitch in the Kitchen Thursday" sounded too chauvinistic.

This post is a little late for dinnertime, but I'm on a travel job at the moment in Louisiana. I cooked this in the production MoHome, which is impressive if I do say so myself.

This week's dish is a variation on the traditional shepherd's pie. I named it after the royal House of Hanover because the Hanovers were in power around the time that meat and shepherd's pies became popular in Britain. And because this souped-up version is tasty enough to grace the table of a monarch. If you're a vegetarian, you will need to modify the recipe with Boca or another meat substitute.


The Hanover pie has three layers and a crust on both the bottom and top. Sometimes I make homemade crusts for desserts, but for this a regular store-bought crust will do. The pie is assembled like so:

-Bottom crust
-Meat (ground beef + pork churizo)
-Potatoes (garlic and Romano mashed)
-Top crust

1) Make the potatoes first.

Garlic and Romano Mashed Potatoes

3 medium potatoes, washed, but not peeled
2-4 garlic cloves (depending on how much you like garlic) with the papery skin removed
2 green onions, thinly sliced (1/4 c.)
2 tbs unsalted butter
1/2 c. grated Romano (4 oz)
1-1 1/2 c. Half & Half
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 tbs coarse salt
2 c. water

In a pot, stir the salt into the water and bring to boil. Quarter the potatoes and cook in the salted water for 25 minutes, covered. After the first 10 minutes, add the garlic. In a second small pot or skillet, cook the green onion in the butter until tender, but not brown. Drain the potatoes and garlic and beat with an electric mixer on low. Add the green onion mixture, Romano and pepper. Gradually beat in enough Half & Half to make potatoes light and fluffy.

Set aside to be used as the third layer.

2) Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and press the bottom crust into a 9" ungreased (that's what she said) pie dish. Follow instructions according to the package it came in.

3) Layer one: meat

Ground beef
Pork churizo

In a large skillet, mix the churizo into the beef (the amount of churizo you use will depend on how much beef you cook and desired spiciness). Juuust brown the meat and add it to the pie.

4) Layer two: veggies

Canned veggies, drained

Traditionally, corn or peas are used, but you can pretty much use any veggie you like. Get creative. Today, I used a mix of corn and green beans. Add this layer to the pie, on top of the meat.

5) Add the potatoes, on top of the veggies, followed by the top layer of the pie crust. Pinch the edges of the crust and cut ventilation slits into the center.

6) Ovens vary, bake for 28-30 minutes (or follow the instructions that came with the pie crust). Check it frequently and cover with aluminum foil if the crust starts to over-brown along the edges.

7) Cool and enjoy!

Rando pic: (I've been filming in a swamp for the past 3 days)


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