Friday, August 28, 2009

sheperd's pie

We have been to Walt Disney World twice and both times we have gone to Rose & Crown in Epcot....It is AMAZING!! We enjoyed the "IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth" (a dazzling Fireworks, Music and Laser Light Show, featured over the World Showcase water feature—it's truly an amazing sight) from the patio and the wonderful food. We feel in love with their Shepard's pie...this is truly a meal EVERYONE will LOVE!!!

2 lbs russet potatoes, peeled, diced
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons milk (approximate)
salt, to taste
fresh ground pepper, to taste
2 medium onions, chopped
2 lbs lean ground beef
2 large carrots, thinly sliced
1 cup fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 (14 1/2 ounce) can beef broth
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
paprika (optional)

Cook potatoes in boiling salted water until tender, about 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 400°F. Drain potatoes and mash; add 2 tbsp of the butter and enough milk to have a firm but not runny consistency. Season potatoes with salt and pepper to taste. Heat 1 tbsp butter in sauté pan; add onion, and sauté for 5 minutes. Add ground beef, and cook until beef is lightly browned; drain off any excess fat. Add carrots and mushrooms to beef and cook until tender, about 10 minutes, adding 1-2 tbsp water to keep beef from drying out, as needed. Add Worcestershire sauce. Stir together and add beef broth and cornstarch; bring all to a boil, stirring constantly.Add nutmeg. Remove from heat. Place meat mixture into oven proof casserole dish; cover with mashed potatoes. Sprinkle with paprika if you like. Bake at 400°F for 25-30 minutes, or until potatoes are light golden.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

renee's easy "kung pao" shrimp

when you need a little Kung Pao....

1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon chopped ginger
1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sugar
salt and pepper
1 pound shelled, deveined shrimp
1/4 cup oil
1 small onion, diced
1 large or 2 small zucchini, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
1 small red pepper, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
2 ounces cashews

1 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons rooster chili sauce
2 teaspoons Chinese bean paste, optional
2 teaspoons sesame oil

Combine garlic, ginger, 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch, baking soda, sugar, and salt and pepper. Add shrimp, mix, and let stand 20 minutes. Heat oil in a wok. Add the shrimp and stir fry over high heat about 20 seconds, or just until shrimp change color. Remove. Add onion to the same oil and stir fry 1 minute. Add zucchini and red pepper and stir fry about 30 seconds. Mix sauce ingredients together and add to the wok. Cook, stirring, until the sauce is slightly thickened. Add the shrimp and nuts and heat through completely.

Monday, August 24, 2009


I haven't been happy with the indian restaurants here in the central valley so I decided to make some indian food myself. This is a great naan recipe, my dough didn't rise like it was supposed to and it still turned out great!

1 pkg. dry yeast (2 ½ tsp.)
1 c. warm water
1/4 c. white sugar
3 Tbsp. milk
1 egg, beaten
2 tsp. salt
4 ½ c. bread flour
1/4 c. butter, melted

1–Dissolve yeast in warm water in large bowl. Stir in sugar, milk, egg, salt, and enough flour to make a soft dough. Knead 6-8 minutes. Place dough in a well oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and set aside to rise. Let rise 1 hour, until dough has doubled in volume.

2–Punch down dough. Pinch off small handfuls of dough the size of a golf ball. Roll into balls, and place on a tray. Cover with a towel and allow to double in size, about 30 minutes.

3–During second rising, preheat grill (pancake griddle) to high heat.

4–Roll a ball of dough out into a thin circle. Spray grill with Pam. Place dough on grill, cook for 2-3 minutes, or until puffy and lightly browned. Brush uncooked side with butter and turn over. Brush cooked side with butter, and cook until browned, another 2-4 minutes. Remove from grill and continue process until all the naan has been prepared.

black bean and corn salad

A friend of mine brought this salad to a party and it was so good!

1/4 c. cilantro, minced
1 lime or 1 tbsp. lime juice
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, rinsed and drained
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 avocado, peeled and diced
1 packet of Good Seasons Italian Dressing, follow dressing instructions
salt and pepper to taste

Combine, cilantro, black beans, corn, tomatoes and mix. Chill for 2 hours. Just before serving, Gently fold in avocado. Squeeze in your lime and add your dressing. Salt and pepper if needed.

easy trifle bowl dessert

I made this on Saturday for a barbecue and it was a big hit!

trifle bowl -If you don't have one use a meduim sized glass bowl or a small punch bowl.
1 brownie mix, baked and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 lg. chocolate pudding mix, made
1-2 c. whipping cream
fruit -I like to use a mix of raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and blackberries. Kiwi also works great! You really can't go wrong with this recipe, you can use just about any fruit.

Add a layer of your baked and cooled brownies, use about half or a third depending on how many layers you want. Carefully, smother the tops of the brownies with your already made chocolate pudding (make sure to smother the layers as evenly as possible). Add your first layer of fruit. Now add the whipping cream, and repeat. You can mix up the order of the layers if you want. Most of the time, I just use a small amount of whipping cream on the top.
Serves 8-10

For my small family of three I only fill it up half way. I use a small pudding package and half the brownies from the batch.