Thursday, December 31, 2009

Left-over Turkey Pot Pie

If you are like me you have had about all you can take of family this holiday season. You also probably have some left-over turkey waiting to be reused. I can't help you with your family problems. But here's an idea for your turkey!


In mixer, mix 2 c. flour, 1 t. salt and 2/3 cup lard (sorry, no substitutes) till sandy.

Add one egg yolk, let mix till crumbly. Add cold water, 1 T. at a time, till dough just comes together. Turn out onto floured board and knead a few times till it holds together nicely. Wrap in Saran Wrap and stick in the fridge while you work on the filling.


In pot, mix together 4 c. finely diced turkey, 1 can cream of chicken soup, 1/4 c. milk or cream, 1 T. dried onion, 1 t. salt and a few turns fresh pepper, and 1 carrot (finely diced). Heat and stir now and then, overall about 20 minutes. Turn off heat, stir in 1 c. frozen peas. Let cool slightly.

Roll out crust on floured board till lightly bigger than pie pan, line pan with crust. Spoon in filling, spread evenly. Wet edges of top crust with water and place top crust over filling; crimp as desired. Cut a few steam vents in top crust, brush with beaten egg.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes or until golden brown and you can see the filling bubbling through the top crust. Let sit 5-10 minutes, then slice and serve. Yummy comfort food.

Friday, December 25, 2009

More than just another pretty face!

My wife has talent that is beyond description. To begin, she can find beauty in the most unlikely places (like me, for example). She can also bake like an angel. We actually have tubs of lard in our refrigerator - used to make the most wonderful pie crusts on earth. As you can imagine she loves holidays and uses them as an excuse to indulge her second greatest passion - baking. (Her first passion is hanging out with me. What can I say, I'm a catch.)

Here are some of her Christmas cookies:

Here's her recipe for shortbread.

1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar

Beat with mixer till light and fluffy, like 10 minutes or so.
Add 1 t. flavoring, like vanilla or almond extract.
Add 2 c. flour and 1/2 t. salt, let mixer go for a while, like 5 minutes.
The dough might be crumbly at this point, so add cold water 1 a time until the dough comes together (like a pie crust dough).
Turn out onto lightly floured surface and roll to 1/4 inch thickness.
Cut out with desired shapes.
Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.
When cookies are cool, mix 2 cups pwd. sugar, 2 T. corn syrup, 1 t. flavoring and milk 1 T. at a time until the glaze is of pouring consistency. Tint to color if desired. Drizzle over cookies. I do this on a cooling rack set over a cookie sheet to catch the drips. Let set until dry.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Whole Hog White Chili

When my wife and I lived in Seattle a friend gave us a recipe for white chicken chili. That's the sort of thing they eat in Seattle in order to prove how different and interesting they are. However, as with most of the new foods we tried in Seattle, the difference was amazing.

I decided to use this recipe with one slight change for our Christmas chili. We have some leftover hog from my son's birthday:

So I substituted whole hog for chicken and the results are crazy (and good) enough to be a Seattle classic. Here's the recipe:

3 cans (or 1 lb. dry - but you will need to soak them overnight) Great Northern white beans
2-4 lbs. whole hog left-overs (you can use chicken)
Half of one large onion, chopped
4-6 cloves of garlic, minced
3 cans of green chiles
2 t. cumin
1 1/2 t. oregano
1/4 t. cloves
1/4 t. cayenne
8 cups chicken stock
1 bottle homebrew (brown ale), or whatever beer you have around
Brick of Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

Saute the onions, then add the garlic and spices. Add to chicken stock and beans. Then add the whole mess to the meat, including the beer. Let it simmer for hours.
If you wish, and I do, then you can thicken with flour. Then add the cheese.

This is the "kid friendly" version. I eat mine with Tabasco sauce.
You can serve with sour cream, but I don't.