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Herb and Apple Stuffing

16 cups 1-inch bread cubes, white or whole wheat (2 baguettes)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
2 cups medium-diced yellow onion (2 large)
2 cups medium-diced celery (3 large stalks)
2 Granny Smith apples, unpeeled, cored and large diced
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup sliced blanched almonds, toasted, optional

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

Put the bread cubes on a 13 by 18 by 1-inch baking sheet and bake them in the oven for 7 minutes.
In a large sauté pan, melt the butter and add the onion, celery, apples, parsley, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Sauté for 10 minutes, until the mixture is soft.

Combine the bread cubes and cooked vegetables in a large bowl and add the chicken stock, and almonds, if desired.
Place the stuffing into the main cavity of the turkey and into the neck of the bird… I cook a 12-pound turkey for 2 1/2 hours at 350 degrees F in a preheated oven. Make sure the stuffing in the cavity is secured by wrapping the legs tightly with string.

 

From: Foodnetwork.com

 

 

 

 

Tuscan Bean Soup

1/2 cup kidney beans soaked overnight or 1 (14-ounce) can store-bought beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup cannellini beans soaked overnight or 1 (14-ounce) can store-bought beans, drained and rinsed
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling on bread
1/2 pound diced pancetta
2 cups diced yellow onions
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced carrots
4 cloves garlic, sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (14-ounce) can chick peas, drained and rinsed
2 quarts chicken stock, plus extra water if needed
2 sprigs rosemary
3 sprigs thyme
1 sprig oregano
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
2 heads Lacinata kale, stems removed and cut into bite size pieces
1 loaf Italian peasant bread, cut into thick slices
Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated, for serving

Place the kidney beans in a medium pot, add water to cover by 2-inches and bring to a boil. (If using canned kidney beans, skip this step.) Turn the heat down, let simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until just-tender. Use the same process for the cannellini beans.

In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the pancetta, rendering the fat and cooking until slightly crispy about 3 minutes. Saute the onion, celery, carrot and garlic for 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Add the diced tomatoes, the cooked and drained kidney beans, cannellini beans, chick peas, and the chicken stock. Using kitchen twine, tie the herbs and the bay leaf into a bundle and add to the pot. Season with the red chili flakes, salt and pepper. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, then add the kale. Continue cooking until the beans are completely tender.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Drizzle olive oil over the slices of peasant bread, season with a little salt and pepper and toast in the oven. Serve the soup in large bowls with grated Parmesan and a slice of toast.

 

Recipe from: Emeril Lagasse, 2007

 

 

 

Baked Brie with Caramelized Onions

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
8 cups sliced onions (about 4 large)
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon sugar
1 8-inch-diameter 32- to 36-ounce French Brie, packed in wooden box (reserve box)
2 French bread baguettes, sliced

Melt butter in heavy very large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions; sauté until just tender, about 6 minutes. Add minced thyme, reduce heat to medium and cook until onions are golden, stirring often, about 25 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 2 minutes. Add 1/4 cup wine; stir until almost all liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle sugar over onions and sauté until soft and brown, about 10 minutes. Add remaining 1/4 cup wine; stir just until liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cool. (Can be prepare 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Unwrap Brie, reserving bottom of wooden box. Cut away only top rind of cheese, leaving rind on sides and bottom intact. Return Brie to box, rind side down. Place box on baking sheet. Top Brie evenly with onion mixture. Bake until cheese just melts, about 30 minutes. Transfer Brie in box to platter. Surround with baguette slices.

 

From:Epicurious.com

 

 

 

Beef and Guinness Stew

3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 pounds boneless chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 teaspoon salt, divided
5 cups chopped onion (about 3 onions)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
4 cups fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth
1 (11.2-ounce) bottle Guinness Stout
1 tablespoon raisins
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 cups (1/2-inch-thick) diagonal slices carrot (about 8 ounces)
1 1/2 cups (1/2-inch-thick) diagonal slices parsnip (about 8 ounces)
1 cup (1/2-inch) cubed peeled turnip (about 8 ounces)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Place flour in a shallow dish. Sprinkle beef with 1/2 teaspoon salt; dredge beef in flour. Add half of beef to pan; cook 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove beef from pan with a slotted spoon. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and beef.

2. Add onion to pan; cook 5 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in tomato paste; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Stir in broth and beer, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Return meat to pan. Stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, raisins, caraway seeds, and pepper; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Uncover and bring to a boil. Cook 50 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add carrot, parsnip, and turnip. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and bring to a boil; cook 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Sprinkle with parsley.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Make Vegetable Stock

Ingredients:
1 to 2 onions
2 to 3 carrots
3 to 4 celery stalks
4 to 5 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1 small bunch parsley
1 teaspoon whole peppercorns

Optional Extras: leeks (especially the green parts), fennel, tomatoes, mushrooms, mushroom stems, parsnips
Equipment
Sharp knife
Stock pot
Strainer
Cheesecloth or coffee filters (for straining)
Storage containers

1. Gather Some Vegetables and Herbs: Onions, carrots, and celery give stock a great base flavor, and you can round these out with any of the other vegetables listed above. You can also make stock using any amount of vegetables that you happen to have on-hand, but it’s good to have a roughly equal portion of each so the resulting stock will have a balanced flavor.  It’s nice to add a few herbs to the stock, but we tend to keep them fairly light. Parsley does really well, especially the stems leftover from picking off the tops. Bay leaf adds a pungent, earthy flavor and thyme gives a nice woody note.

2. Roughly Chop All The Vegetables: Wash any visible dirt off the vegetables and give them a rough chop. You don’t even need to peel them first unless you really want to. (Some people even advocate leaving on the onion skins!) Throw all the vegetables in a pot big enough to hold them plus a few extra inches of water.

3. Cover with Water and Simmer: Cover the vegetables with enough water that you can easily stir them in the pot. Less water means that your stock will be more concentrated; more water makes a lighter-flavored stock. Set the pot over medium-high heat and bring it to just under a boil. Once you start to see some bubbling around the edges of the pot and a few wisps of steam on the surface, turn the heat down to medium-low.

4. Cook for One Hour or So: This isn’t an exact science, but one hour is generally enough time to infuse the water with vegetable goodness. If you need to take it off the heat a little early or don’t get to it until a little later, it will be fine. Give it a stir every now and again to circulate the vegetables.

5. Strain and Store Take the pot off the stove and remove all the vegetables with a slotted spoon. Set your strainer over a big bowl and line it with cheese cloth or coffee filters. Pour the stock through. Divide the stock into storage containers, cool completely, and then freeze.

Additional Notes:
• Roasting and Sweating – Two ways to add more flavor to your broth are to roast the vegetables beforehand or to let them sweat (start to soften and release their liquids) for a few minutes over the heat before adding the water.
• Saving Vegetables for Broth – We keep a big sealable bag in our freezer where we I know what you mean about not understanding why I ever bothered to buy stock–I had never made my own until a couple months ago, and now I’m a total homemade veggie broth convert.
• Vegetables to use: Onions, carrots, and celery are the key ingredients in vegetable stock, but many other vegetables can add depth and flavor. Wash and save roots, stalks, leaves, ends, and peelings from vegetables such as leeks, scallions, garlic, fennel, chard, lettuce, potatoes, parsnips, green beans, squash, bell peppers, eggplant, mushrooms are also good additions.
• Vegetables to avoid: Scraps from the following vegetables are better off going into the compost bin, as their flavors can be too overpowering: cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, turnips, rutabagas, artichokes. Beet roots and onion skins should also be avoided, unless you don’t mind your stock turning red or brown.
• Spoiled vegetables: Although stock is a great way to use veggies that are wilted or slightly past their prime, be sure not to use produce that is rotten or moldy.
• Storing scraps: You will want to collect about 4 cups of vegetables to make 2 quarts of stock. Save scraps throughout the week, wash and chop them into similar sizes, and keep them in an airtight bag or container in the refrigerator. If you are collecting scraps for longer than a week, store them in the freezer.

 

From: TheKitchn.com

 

 

 

Mexican Black Beans with Epazote

1 pound dried black beans
3 cups chicken stock
3 cups water
2 large sprigs fresh Epazote (or 2 tablespoons dried)
1/2 pound chopped fresh chorizo sausage
1 diced onion
2 diced carrots
2 diced celery stalks
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon ancho or New Mexico chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin

Soak black beans overnight in cold water to cover. Drain and rinse.

Preheat the oven to 300°F. Place the beans, chicken stock and water, and epazote in a Dutch oven. Bring to a boil on the stove top, skim off foam, then cover and bake for 1 1/2 hours.

In a large, heavy skillet, brown chorizo sausage. Remove the chorizo, leaving the fat in the pan. Add onion, carrots, celery stalks, and garlic to the pan and cook over medium heat until the vegetables become soft.

Remove the pot of beans from the oven and stir in the vegetables and chorizo, along with ancho or New Mexico chili powder, ground cumin, and salt to taste.

Cover and bake for 1 hour, or until the beans are soft.

 

From: Field Guide to Herbs & Spices , by Aliza Green

 

 

 

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