Archive for December, 2011

Kate and her hubby made this and the whole family loved it. She says it’s super easy but that you may want to make the filling the night before if you were doing it for a weeknight. Also, they used cranberries, rather than raisins. It’s from Fine Cooking magazine.

For the Topping
2 large sweet potatoes (about 2 lb. total)
1/2 cup whole milk
1/4 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
2 Tbs. unsalted butter, softened
Kosher salt and
Freshly ground black pepper

For the Filling
2 medium celery stalks, cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 3/4 cup)
1 large carrot, cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 3/4 cup)
1medium onion, finely chopped (about 1-1/2 cups)
Kosher salt
3 medium cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. chopped fresh oregano or 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. ancho chile powder or other pure chile powder
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1-1/2 lb. ground beef
1 14-oz. can whole peeled tomatoes
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pimento-stuffed green olives
1/3 cup coarsely chopped raisins or dried cranberries

Prepare the Topping

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F. Line a heavy-duty rimmed baking sheet with foil.

Slice the sweet potatoes in half lengthwise and set them cut side down on the baking sheet. Roast until very tender, about 30 minutes

When cool enough to handle, scoop the flesh into a medium mixing bowl. Add the milk, cheese, butter, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper and beat with an electric hand mixer on low speed until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute. Set aside.

Prepare the Filling

Heat the oil in a 12-inch sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the celery, carrot, onion, and 1 tsp. salt. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft, fragrant, and starting to turn golden, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, oregano, chile powder, and cinnamon and cook for 30 seconds. Add the beef, season with 2 tsp. salt, and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Tilt the pan and spoon off all but about 1 Tbs. of the fat; return the pan to the heat.

Pour the tomatoes and their juice into a small bowl and crush them with your hands or a fork. Add the tomatoes to the meat and cook, uncovered, until thick, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the olives and raisins and cook for another minute; season to taste with salt.

Assemble and bake the pie

Heat oven to 375 F. Transfer the beef mixture to a 9×9-inch baking dish. Spread the sweet potatoes over the top in an even layer. Bake until bubbling around edges, about 30 minutes. Switch the oven to a high-broil setting and position the rack about 6 inches from the broiler element. Broil the pie until the sweet potatoes are a bit browned, 2 to 4 minutes.

Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.


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This came from Robin. The kids loved it, but you need to add some tobasco or hot sauce for parents.


2 tbsp(25 mL) butter
1small onion, chopped
3 tbsp(45 mL) all-purpose flour
3 cups(750 mL) vegetable or chicken stock
1 cup(250 mL) 1% milk
4 cups(1 L) frozen mixed chunky vegetables
Pinchblack pepper
Pinchcayenne (optional)
2 cups(500 mL) shredded old orange cheddar cheese (one 227-g pkg)


1. In a large saucepan, heat butter over medium heat. Add onion; cook, stirring often, about 5 minutes, until softened. Add flour; cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Gradually add stock and milk, stirring constantly. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring often. Boil 1 minute until thickened and smooth.

2. Stir in vegetables, pepper and cayenne. Return to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer about 5 minutes, stirring often, until vegetables are tender and heated through. Remove from heat and add cheese, stirring until melted.


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