Greek Style Shepherd’s Pie – Lactose & Wheat Free

Meat:

Ground meat – beef & pork
1 – 2 onions, chopped
Salt & pepper
Oregano, rosemary, cinnamon, garlic powder, dash of red wine vinegar, several dashes liquid aminos (soy sauce), and 2-3 tblsp. sugar.
1 can tomato sauce
1-2 cans tomato paste
Olive oil

Over medium heat, add several tablespoons of olive to a pan. Add onions & meat, saute until done. Add spices & tomato ingredients until flavored and thickened to your taste.

Veg:

Steam at least two bunches asparagus. Remove from heat as soon as it turns bright green.

*Better next time note: cut asparagus into 1 1/2 inch sections before beginning to layer your dish.

Boil 2  – 3 lbs. of potatoes till tender. (Peel before boiling, or squeeze skin off after they are cooked and cooled). Slice, lengthwise, 1/2 of the cooked potatoes.
For the other half, use 1/4 cup chicken broth and nutmilk to mash to the desired consistency.
Add salt, garlic powder and nutmeg to taste.

Zucchini:

Slice thin, lengthwise. No precooking required.
*Note: while baking the zucchini will create a liquid. This can be soaked up, like gravy, with the mashed potatoes while eating, OR potatoes can line the bottom of the pan in order to soak up the liquid.

Pan Layering:

Coat bottom of oven safe baking dish with olive oil. Add the juice of one fresh lemon and 2-3 drops of liquid smoke. Use a fork to mix and spread evenly over the bottom of the pan.

Add asparagus (or potatoes as noted above), then a layer of zucchini slices, meat mixture, another layer of potatoes, and zucchini slices. Top with mashed potatoes.

*Note: Dollop mashed potatoes across the surface, use moistened fingers to spread.

Bake, covered, at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove covering for last 15 minutes.

 

Advertisements

Sauce Series – White Sauces – 4 of 5

White sauces are made with milk, buttermilk, yogurt, coconut milk, butter, other white liquids and thickening agents.

 

Basic White Sauce

2 tblsp. Butter

2 tblsp. Flour

1 cup milk

½ tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

Melt butter and stir in flour. Gradually add milk and stir until mixture boils and thickens. Cook an additional 3 minutes.

Use on seafood, vegetables, fish, or meat.

Additions to white sauce:

Chopped parsley 2 – 4 tblsp.

Mustard – 2 tsp.

Cheese – ½ – 1 cup grated cheese

 

Horseradish Cream Sauce

½ cup heavy whipping cream, whipped to stiff peaks.

4 -6 tblsp. horseradish

½ tps. Salt

Pinch of pepper

Serve with ham, beef or fish.

 

Makes ¾ cup sauce.

 

Lemon Roux

 

Pan Gravy

Approximate the amount of flour needed to thicken the volume of meat drippings available. Place flour in a dressing / gravy shaker or whisk with cool water and shake or blend till smooth.

To meat drippings (fat) [from a turkey, chicken, bacon, or roast] in a deep pan over medium heat, slowly add flour and water mixture. Stir continuously. After the mixture has thickened, continue cooking for a few more minutes to make sure that the raw flour taste has been dispelled.

 

Hollandaise Sauce

2/4 cup butter

1 ½ tblsp. Lemon juice

3 egg yolks, well beaten with dash of salt

Cayenne pepper

 

Divide butter in the three parts. Place one piece in top of a small double broiler, add lemon juice and egg yolks. Place over hot water (not boiling) and cook slowly, whisk constantly.

When butter is melted, add second piece. Keep whisking. As mixture thickens, add the final piece of butter.

Once the mixture is about as thick as gravy, remove from heat, add salt and serve immediately.

Can be used over vegetables (asparagus), fish, shellfish and poached eggs.

Lightly finish with cayenne pepper.

 

Makes: ¾ cup
Trouble shooting: If sauce is curdling, dilute by the teaspoon with hot water while constantly whisking.

______________

Check out the other videos in this Sauce Series

Sauce Series #1 – taste bud training

Sauce Series #2 – red sauces

Sauce Series #3 – brown sauces & thickening agents

 

Mock ‘Chopped’ #5 – group cooking challenge how-to

 

 

Boiled & Spiced Citrus Chicken (or Pork)

It takes time and patience to prepare chicken this way, but it is so worth it!

6 bone-in, skin on chicken thighs OR about a 4 lb bone-in pork shoulder – chunked into quarters

Rinse, pat dry and place meat into a large food-safe plastic bag

Add to the bag;

1 tblsp. cumin powder
1 tblsp. sea salt
1 tblsp. garlic powder
1 tblsp. oregano
1 tblsp. cayenne pepper (reduce to half or less if you don’t like spicy food)

1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup lime juice

If you remember Shake-n-Bake …do that. If that reference is meaningless, then shake everything inside the bag until the chicken is evenly coated with the spices.

Place the spiced chicken and citrus juice in a pot. Fill it with water – just until the chicken is covered. On the stovetop (uncovered), cook on high until the chicken begins to boil, reduce heat, but still keep it bubbling.

This where the patience comes in. Keep an eye on the pot as the liquid boils. This can take anywhere between 2 and 3 hours. Once the liquid is almost gone, let the meat brown – turn it so it cooks evenly – but not so much that it burns.

Liquid almost all-the-way boiled down.

 

The chicken meat can be shredded, chunked or eaten off the bone. Use it in salads, soups, on tostadas or in tacos…and the list could go on and on!

Next time I make it, I will double this recipe so that leftovers will linger longer.

boiled and spicked chicken

 

Detoxing, Recharging and Cleaning Out the Pipes

Stefan Krause, Germany

I’ve watched many friends doing detoxes and cleanses but was never brave enough to try one myself.  What is a detox? It is like flushing out  slow-running pipes in your plumbing system….except this one is in your body. Over time, our soft tissues and circulatory system accumulates things that we wish it wouldn’t; chemicals from cleaning products, preservatives from processed foods, heavy metals from environmental pollution and the list goes on…

On a scale from one to ten, I figured that my daily eating habits rated about a 7.5. There was room for improvement. A system-wide preventative-maintenance program seemed like a good idea at this point, because I’d clicked over another zero on the odometer of life. Finally, I was curious to find out if I had the willpower and resolve necessary to be really good with everything that I put in my mouth.

I signed up for an 11 Day Clean Eating Program with Zywies (Z ī -wees) Health Coach, Mafer Frantz. In the beginning, I was worried that I might fail. I love my morning coffee and enjoy satisfying a desire for something sweet after lunch.

IMG_6987-lrwebAccording to Mafer, “detoxing at least 4 times a year supports a healthy body for a lifetime.” Her program promises that you won’t go hungry, you will eat whole, seasonal foods and you will have more energy and feel great. Her promises are true.

The regime begins with drinking lots of water! First thing in the morning, a splash of apple cider vinegar and cayenne pepper is added to it. For the remainder of the day you are drinking water with unsweetened fruit juice concentrates. The next step is the elimination of some of the things that we all know are not good for us – sugar, caffeine, bread, cheese and certain meats. Going along with every step, Mafer provides educational articles to read about what happens inside our bodies as a result of  eating the foods we habitually consume.

Alternatives and substitutions are where things start to get interesting and where my failure-worry was replaced with curiosity and enthusiasm for all of the new things to eat, snack on and prepare.

At the conclusion of the program, I did feel more energized. I haven’t resumed my prior coffee habit and I have adopted new, healthier, practices that will be incorporated into my (and my families) everyday life. I have also learned, once again, that I don’t have to be afraid of change.

Since this blog follows the ebb and flow of Shared Tastes, you will be seeing my own take on preparing and eating superfoods, more seasonal whole foods and more vegetarian dishes. Many of these are directly inspired by Mafer Frantz’s 11 Day Clean Eating Program.

 

400dpiLogo_14_247x160

 

certificateLISAREDFERN

 

Turkey – Brined & Self Basting – with Stuffing on the side

How do you know when something is done? When you can smell it…  This meal creates delightful aromas and flavors.

meal

Brine Mix:

Sea Salt
Dried herbs: juniper berries, rosemary, black peppercorns, cranberries, garlic, apples, thyme, rosemary, sage and orange peels.

In a heavy white garbage (compactor) bag combine 1/2 cup brine mix with 4 cups warm water.  Shake it around so that the salt dissolves.
Place bag inside of a 5 gallon bucket.brine mixture

brined

Remove packaging from turkey as well as giblets or packing in the body cavity. Rinse turkey with fresh water then pat dry.
Without poking holes, run your hands under the turkey skin on the breast and back to create skin pockets.
Use a fork or knife to pierce turkey meat in the breasts, thighs & legs.

Put turkey into basting bag inside of bucket. Fill bag with water until turkey is submerged. Place bucket in refrigerator several days prior to cooking.

Self Basting Herb Paste:

1  cup barely softened butter
4 strips bacon uncooked – chopped
1/2 onion – chopped
3 cloves garlic – chopped
1/2 bunch fresh parsley – chopped
Fresh sage – chopped (about 3 tblsp.)
1 preserved lemon – chopped (less if a less salty gravy is desired)

1 cup dry white wine

4-5 more strips of bacon

Use your hands to squeeze the mixture together till well mixed.

Gently place handfulls of the Self Basting Herb Paste into the skin pockets.

basting paste

Place turkey –  breast side down –  into baking pan.

Lay remaining strips of bacon on top of bird & cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Cook in 350 degree oven till done. (See package cooking instructions for how much time to cook based on weight.)

Check center of breast meat with meat thermometer. Once it’s reached 155 degrees it’s ready!

Adam prepares the 2013 Thanksgiving turkeys; a wild hunted bird and a store bought.

Adam prepares the 2013 Thanksgiving turkeys; a wild hunted bird and a store bought.

Strain out solids from turkey drippings. Place in pot on stove top. At medium heat, start adding sprinkles of Wondra Flour once bubbles start appearing at the edges.  Blend with hand-held whisk until desired thickness.

Stuffing:

Meyer Lemon Bread Crumbs – about 4 cups

1 bunch fresh cilantro – chopped
3 beaten eggs
1/2 onion  – copped
3 stalks celery – chopped
3 cloves garlic – chopped
chicken broth – enough to moisten bread crumbs
1 drop food-grade Oregano oil (stirred into broth)

Combine all ingredients, cover and bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes.

jaja with turkey

Cranberry Clove Sauce

Make your next meal pop with this mildly sweet, tangy super food sauce.

2 cups fresh cranberries

juice & zest from two lemons

1/2 to 2/3rds cup maple syrup

Combine all in pot; cook on medium (t0 low) heat. Once it reaches a boil, turn off heat. Carefully mash berries with a potato masher (berries will pop ….be careful of hot, flying cranberry juice)

Stir in 1/8 – 1/2 tsp. ground cloves OR 3 drops food-grade Clove Oil – to taste

cooking cranberries

Health benefits of cranberries

Antioxidents & Vitamin C

Healthier Teeth & Lowering Cholesterol

Reducing Inflammation

Lavender Lemon Ice Cream Topped with Honey Drizzle and Lavender Petal Dust

302 lr web

1 cup milk (soy milk also works)
1 cup maple syrup
3 tblsp. flour

whisk together in pot over medium heat until smooth

3 egg yolks – beaten drizzled into pot while whisking – until mixture thickens

turn off heat – but while still warm – whisk in 2 cups heavy whipping cream

2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 drops food-grade lemon essential oil**
1 drop food grade lavender essential oil**

Cool mixture in refrigerator for 2 hours before pouring into ice cream maker.

Lavender Petal Dust:

Grind dried lavender buds with a mortar and pestle (or in a clean coffee grinder of food processor)
Pour dust into a strainer (with tightly woven screen) – shake over ice cream

 

** I have a specific brand of food-grade essential oils that use in my recipes.  DO NOT consume any random brand of essential oil as many of them contain toxic filler ingredients. If you’d like to know more about that brand that I use, you can contact me via e-mail.

first birthday

from ray 6 jaja bd2

mary and baby claire

Lemon Meringue Pie – Grandma’s

1 lemon – juice and grated rind; reserve 1 tsp. juiceswimming

1 cup + 2 Tblsp. sugar
4-1/2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 Tblsp. butter
3 eggs, separated
1-1/2 cups boiling water
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
Additional 4 Tblsp. sugar
Combine lemon juice and rind, sugar, cornstarch and butter with egg yolks in a saucepan or double-boiler and use low heat.
Slowly add boiling water, stirring constantly so as not to curdle egg. When thick and boiling, set aside to cool.
Beat egg whites with cream of tartar until stiff. Add 1 tsp. lemon juice and 4 Tblsp. sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla if desired.
Put filling into prepared crust. Top with meringue. Bake at 350F until meringue is lightly browned.

Betty’s note;
I do not have a double boiler so this is my recipe.
combine 3 Tbls. cornstarch with 1cup, plus 2 tbls sugar in top of double boiler.  Add grated lemon rind of 1 lemon & 4 tbls lemon juice, 1 tbls butter & 3 eggs yokes, beaten.  Mix well then add 1 1/2 cups boiling water very slowly.
I do this in a sauce pan, putting pan of mixed ingredients over flame while adding boiling water (slowly) & stirring constantly.  If it should get lumpy, beat with mixer while still not.
Meringue
3 egg whites
1/8 teas. cream of tartar (optional)
4 teasp. sugar
Beat till stiff peaks, add teasp. lemon juice or vanilla, put on pie, bake @ 350 till brown.

Betty Ken and Bud early daysbetty ken

Preserved Citrus

citrus fruit

2 tablespoons salt per fruit

sterilized wide mouth glass containerorange with salt

Thoroughly wash and dry each fruit to be used

Cut in half then partially cut each half into (almost 1/4’ths)

Add a tablespoon of salt  for each section of fruit, then put it in the glass container face down squishing it as you go.

You’ll want the liquid fruit juice + salt to cover the pile of fruit once you are finished.

(This keeps the unwanted bacteria out).

Give the container a good shake then let it sit in on a dark shelf (does not need to be refrigerated!).

Let it sit for at least two weeks to a month – until the rinds are soft- shaking them whenever you remember.lime with salt

The batch in the photos cured for 2 months (unrefrigerated).

Using this same technique, I experimented with preserving tengelos and limes.  It worked!  The tangelos processed similarly to the lemons, but the limes discolored.  At the end of the two months  – they came out limey and wonderful. The rinds, although softer than in their original fresh state, were firmer than the lemon and tangelo rinds.

limes

The finished product.

finished meyer lemons 2

Fruit & salt liquid turns syrupy.

lemon drips

Check out this website for 5 ways to use preserved lemons.

How do you use preserved lemons?  How would you use preserved limes / tangelos?

Baked Sweet Potato with Lemon Roux

Baked Sweet Potatoes:sweet potatoes with rue

Peel potatoes & place in deep oven-safe pot.
Fill pot to about 1/2 the width of potatoes with chicken stock.
Place a dollop of butter on top of each potato & sprinkle with parsley.

Cook uncovered at 400 degrees for about 1 hour or until tender.

Lemon Roux
Melt 1/2 stick of butter in pot over medium heat
as you add ingredients, stir constantly
Juice from 1/2 fresh Lemon
gradually sprinkle in Flour (about 1/2 cup)
add Milk

Adjust dry & wet ingredients until desired thickness is achieved.

***Look out*** This one is rich and creamy – it could be a dessert!