Turkey Brine & Spice Butter

My husband and I have joked around for a while now that we are the Green Acres Family. We lived for several years next to Disney in Celebration, FL For a few of those years I had the privilege of living next to one of my closests friends. We often said that we were going to dig a tunnel between our houses for rainy days. I really miss those days especially during Thanksgiving & Christmas. We’d run back & forth all day & night sharing ingredients.

I stole this from one of Dan’s previous blogs.

Jess & I have a love of Martha Stewart Recipes and that is where I go for my Turkey Brine & Spice Butter Recipe.  She shared this recipe with me years ago & I use it often both on Turkey & Chicken.  I’ll add pictures to this once Thanksgiving is past, gotta make sure that you guys have a great recipe to use for the actual holiday.

Cottage Pie or Shepherd’s Pie?

I hereby interrupt the replay of recipes from the past few months for something new.  The windstorm that took away our February 70 degree days, got me in the kitchen.  One of my husband’s favorite dishes is Shepherd’s Pie.  What is the difference between Shepherd’s Pie and Cottage Pie? Meat, Shepherd’s is made with Lamb while Cottage is made with Beef.

After you decide which type of pie to dig into then it is time to discuss vegetables. The mixture will be topped with mashed potatoes there is no crust however.  For veggies I use onions, mushrooms, celery, carrots & peas. A few folks I know use green beans instead of peas, I prefer the peas.

In the NCF store Ground Lamb ( we also have ground mutton) is $10lb, Ground Beef is $9 lb.  If you would like a steakier flavor the choose Ground Chuck for $10.50 lb. With the other ingredients this will still be an under $20 meal yet it will feed 8-10 people. Erin’s husband stopped by and grabbed 2 serving. One for right then, I got a text the next morning he had the other for breakfast instead of waiting for lunch.

Calorie Count, It is February as New Years Resolutions are still on the mind I am not making a bottom crust from Mashed Potatoes.  Only the top of this pie with have Potatoes. Traditionally the crust is top and bottom is made from Potatoes.

For today’s recipe I’m going to use Ground Lamb, making it a Shepherd’s Pie.  My husband would eat Lamb for every meal if allowed… shh I would too.

 

Braised Lamb Shanks with Red Wine

Fall has finally arrived here in North Carolina, the past few days I have been at the NC Choices Women in Meat Conference. The Conference was held at a camp over in Efland, NC. There the leaves were beginning to change slightly. I came back with many new ideas full of inspirations from the talented women I was surrounded by.

With cool mornings and crisp sunsets it is time for some heavier flavored dishes. Lamb can be a finicky creature but the shanks are a great part to start with as a beginner. They can take a bit of abuse with cooking times and still turn out melting in your mouth. Lamb Shanks are a cool weather treat when braised with Carrots & Prunes. My braising liquid will be Red Wine. The wine lifts the flavor of the lamb and the prunes add a sweetness without leaving the savory realm.

Beef Stew

Every Sunday, my Grandmother was quite predictable she either made us a Pot Roast or a Beef Stew. My Grandmother was one of my main cooking teachers growing up. Both of my Grandmothers were really, they both believed I had a special talent and would instruct me from behind as I began cooking. This Beef Stew has varied little from the time my Great-Grandmother Rumsey taught my Grandmother Hill. Beef Stew is an American tradition, every family has its own special recipe and this is mine. Unfortunately few pictures were taken of this dish as it was Halloween and the family descended on the pot before I remembered I didn't have a final picture. The recipe provided below few 5 adults and 2 children with no leftovers. The Boneless Beef for Stew price at the NCF store is $8.99 lb. Combined with the veggies you're running about $15 for a meal that easily fed 7 with no empty stomachs afterward. Boneless beef for stew can take time to become tender. Long cook times are recommended. The processor uses leftover that is not being turned into ground beef to make boneless beef for stew.