Meat pies have been around since 9500 BC according to Wikipedia. Other sites have it making an entrance much earlier than that. Whenever it made an appearance it’s original purpose was to preserve the meat. Meat was wrapped in a hard flour pocket wrapped several inches thick and baked under hot coals until harden. Amazingly, the pastry was not meant to be eaten. Throwing away the pastry of today’s meat pie would be a travesty. It is that buttery flaky crust baked golden brown that defines today’s meat pie.Continue reading “Meat Pie”
It’s product recipe time and this one couldn’t be easier, or tastier! The classic Black and Blue Salad using our Spaghetti and Steak Seasonings.
What is it about the bottom of a loaf of bread that is just so sad? In our kitchen the older the bread gets the less love it receives until it starts to look like a science project. That is until we decided to look at stale bread with new eyes and giving it a second life. One of our favorite ways to use older bread is to make homemade croutons. Croutons are extremely easy to make and with garden season just ahead perfect with salads giving them that wonderful crunch. We like to use rustic bread which gives the croutons an airiness, but you can use any bread you have on hand. Season the bread with our Spaghetti Seasoning to give it a kick of flavor. Blends especially well with a black and blue salad.
We know blue cheese dressing sounds like the obvious choice here, but we really love the taste of balsamic vinaigrette with steak. To tie the croutons and the salad together we mix up our own vinaigrette using an envelope of good seasons zesty Italian. Here’s the recipe: Mix 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar, 3 tablespoons water, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese with a package of Italian seasoning.
Black and Blue Salad
- 2 black angus boneless strip steaks
- 2 tablespoons COFarms Steak Seasoning
- 4 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 1/4 loaf rustic country bread
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons COFarms Spaghetti Seasoning
- Sprinkle both sides of steak with Steak Seasoning and set aside bringing to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Cut bread into 1-inch cubes and place in large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and Sprinkle with seasoning. Toss to coat. Arrange the cubes in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, about 15 – 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- Heat a grilling pan over medium-high heat, add the steaks and cook 3 -4 minutes per side or until desired doneness. Let steak stand 5 minutes before cutting across the grain into thin slices.
- Divide the lettuce and parsley between to large salad bowls. Arrange onion, avocado, tomatoes, croutons and crumbled blue cheese on lettuce. Top with sliced steak. Serve with dressing of your choice.
Grilled Shrimp in a homemade alfredo sauce. Rich, creamy, and filled with incredible flavor.
A hefty dose of cheese means you don’t have to use flour to thicken the sauce
A homemade pizza dough smoldered in a cheesy white sauce with slivers of smoked salmon, spinach, a bite of fresh dill, and smothered in provolone and mozzarella.
The first time I had this pizza was back in my college days and you know all college students are pizza connoisseur. At least, it was a constant staple in my diet. Dinner on Saturday and breakfast all week long. Perfect for a broke college student. So when I say this pizza is delicious you can trust me. A few decades later and it is still one of my favorite pizzas. Definitely in the top five.
Salmon & Dill:
Salmon and dill is the perfect blend of flavors. It may not be as synonymous as peanut butter and jelly, but it should be. Dill adds that perfect delicate kick to salmon giving it a light herby taste that allows the rich and buttery flavor of the salmon to stand out.
Smoked salmon is considered a delicacy and often carries the price tag as such, but it is worth it. Do not use regular salmon or you will miss the complexity of this pizza. I use sliced smoked salmon because I like the look of it on the pizza, but you can break up a fillet if you cannot find sliced. Smoked salmon is usually in the meat department in most grocery stores.
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Smoked Salmon Pizza
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 3 tablespoons corn syrup
- 2 envelopes active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 cups pizza flour we use Janie’s Mill
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 stick butter
- 2 tablespoons cream cheese
- 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 1 clove fresh garlic minced
- 1/2 cup mozzarella
- 1/2 cup provolone
- 4 ounces smoked salmon
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
- Preheat the oven to 450˚F. Place a pizza stone or heavy baking sheet turn upside down in the oven.
- In a 2-cup measuring cup measure out the water. Add the corn syrup and yeast, mix. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes or until the yeast starts to bubble.
- Pour the yeast mixture into a food processor bowl. Add the olive oil and salt. Pulse for 30 seconds. Slowly begin to add the flour one cup at time, mixing for 2 minutes between additions. Turn the dough onto a floured board. The dough will be very sticky at this point so sprinkle some extra flour on top.
- Knead adding additional flour from the board until no longer sticky, about 5 – 6 kneads is all that is needed. Place a warm, moist towel over the dough and let rest for 15 minutes.
- Roll the dough into a ½-inch thick circle, or two ovals, dusting the pizza dough with flour as needed. Poke holes in the pizza dough with a fork to prevent bubbles.
- Combine heavy cream, butter, and cream cheese in a saucepan over medium heat stirring occasionally. Simmer until melted.
- Stir in parmesan cheese and garlic. Continue cooking on low for 15-20 minutes.
- Spread over the pizza dough.
- Add a drizzle or two of olive oil to a skillet and heat. When hot, add the spinach. Piece the garlic with a fork and keeping the garlic on the tines mix the spinach until wilted down, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper.
- Position the spinach evenly over the cream sauce dividing evenly. Add the dill, reserving 1 – 2 tablespoons, smoked salmon and cheeses.
- Slide the pizza onto the preheated pizza stone or pan. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly. Garnish with the reserved dill, if desired.
Smoked salmon, spinach, white cheddar layered between sheets of pasta smothered in a rich béchamel sauce. But, it is the fresh dill that brings the dish alive.
The secret to a great béchamel sauce is the roux. Roux is equal parts fat, usually butter, and flour. Béchamel sauce requires a white roux and is mainly used for thickening. You want to melt the butter on a heat high enough to melt th e butter but not so high it burns it, usually a medium heat. Be patience and let the butter melt slowly. Once melted remove it from the heat and whisk in the flour before returning to the heat. You only cook the roux long enough to eliminate the flour’s raw flavor, about 2 to 5 minutes. When done you have a silky paste the consistency of Elmer’s glue.
The amount of roux you need depends on the amount of liquid in the recipe. A good rule of thumb, For every cup of liquid you need a tablespoon of flour. So your roux would be one tablespoon of melted butter and 1 tablespoon of flour in this scenario.
The mystery of an onion. When a recipe calls for an onion it doesn’t mean any ole onion will do. When I first starting cooking I would grab whatever onion I had on hand. Then I become all foodie snooty and learned that the color of your onion plays an important role in your recipes.
Here’s a basic guide:
Red Onion: Best raw in salads, sandwiches, burgers, pickling, salsas.
Yellow Onion: Best for long cooking or sautéing in soups, stocks, risotto, sauces, stews.
White Onion: Can be used raw or cooked often called for in Mexican food, white sauces, pasta salads, or raw in salads, chili, and potato salads.
Sweet Onion: These are onion ring gold! They are great cooked or raw and work best in Gratins, roasted vegetables, onion rings, or raw in salads and on sandwiches. Tip: If you ever come across Maui Sweet Onion Chips grab two bags!
Smoked Salmon Lasagna
- 6 ounces smoked salmon
- 2 cups Milk
- 1 white onion, quartered
- 1 Bay leaf
- Pinch of ground cloves
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 leek
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- 4 ounces fresh spinach
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 bunch fresh dill, chopped
- 2 cups white cheddar, shredded
- 16 ounces lasagna pasta sheets
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Add milk, onion, bay leaf, and cloves to a saucepan and warm.
- Meanwhile make the roux. Melt the butter in a small pan, remove from heat, and whisk in the flour. Remove the onion from the milk and whisk in the roux. Keep whisking until you have a thick white sauce without any lumps. Set aside.
- Clean and remove the bottom root from the leek. Slice in half lengthwise and then into half-moons. In a clean skillet, heat some olive oil over medium-high heat until very hot. Add the leeks, it should sizzle and crackle when the leeks hit the pan. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Add the spinach to the leeks and season with salt. Place the garlic on the end of a fork and use it to gently toss the spinach and leeks giving it that nice garlic flavor. Once the spinach is wilted transfer to a bowl that has a colander inside and squeeze out the excess liquid.
- Grease a lasagna pan or casserole dish with butter. Spoon a little béchamel on the bottom of the pan and add the sheets of pasta overlapping and filling in the bottom of the pan. Add some more béchamel over the sheets. Next, spread some of the spinach and leek mixture over the sauce and then add some of the smoked salmon. Now sprinkle some of the fresh dill on top. Spoon some more of the béchamel sauce the dill.
- Just take a spoon and drizzle the sauce over the layers. You do not have to have the layer covered. It will all merge and come together in the baking process.
- Season with freshly grind black pepper and cover with a third of the cheese. Spoon some béchamel sauce on top. Repeat the process starting with the pasta sheets and ending with the béchamel sauce. Add another layer of pasta sheets, béchamel and the rest of the cheese.
- Place the lasagna into the oven and bake 45 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes before cutting. Garnish with fresh chopped dill and serve immediately.