Evelyn Chartres Author
Potatoes

Crying Lamb

Featured - Crying LambCrying lamb is said to have its origins from communities that used shared ovens. The meat is cooked above the vegetables absorbing any drippings which adds to this meals distinctive flavour.

This ready-to-serve recipe is sure to attract some attention during its preparation and cooking. It’s great for family gatherings and has a traditional feel that is sometimes missing from modern dishes.

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces (285 g) of potatoes cut into small cubes
  • 8 ounces (225 g) of parsnips or carrots cut into small slices
  • ⅓ cup (80 ml) of finely chopped onions
  • ⅓ cup (80 ml) of sliced red peppers
  • 2 cloves (5-10 mg) of pressed garlic
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) of pepper
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of olive oil
  • 2 pounds (900 mg) of lamb shanks
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of thyme
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of dill
  • 4 tablespoons (15 ml) of lemon juice (divided)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. In a large bag or sealable container, mix all ingredients up to and including the olive oil.  Mix until contents are evenly coated before placing them in an oiled stoneware container.
  3. Cook in the oven for 30 minutes to soften potatoes and parsnips.
  4. Remove from oven and stir contents.
  5. Mix thyme, dill and lemon juice into a small container. Cover lamb shanks in mixture and set aside.
  6. Using an oiled skillet sear the lamb shanks on every side for a minute or so.
  7. Top stoneware with a grill and place the lamb shanks overtop to make sure that any drippings will pour onto the vegetables.
  8. Return to the oven and cook for about an hour until the internal temperature has reached 160°F (71°C) for medium or 170°F (77°C) for well-done.
  9. Remove from oven, let stand for 5-10 minutes.
  10. Meal is ready-to-serve.

Seafood Chowder

Here is my recipe for a seafood chowder made up of scallops, shrimp, lobster and haddock. Sauté the ingredients first to infuse the meat with flavour then simmer to until it’s ready to serve. For an additional burst of flavour, top with some shredded cheddar cheese.

Ingredients

  • 4 to 6 tablespoons (60 to 90 ml) of butter
  • ½ cup (120 ml) of finely chopped onions
  • 2 cloves (5-10 g) of crushed garlic
  • ½ pound (225 g) of scallops
  • ½ pound (225 g) of peeled jumbo shrimp
  • ½ pound (225 g) of lobster meat
  • ½ pound (225 g) of diced haddock
  • 2 cups (470 ml) of coarsely diced potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of Herbes de Provence or Italian seasoning
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 quart (950 ml) of heavy cream
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) of water
  • 2  tablespoons (30 ml) of cornstarch
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) of grated old cheddar per person (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cook potatoes in the microwave for 3 to 5 minutes or until soft.
  2. Over medium heat add butter and melt.
  3. Add onions and garlic, sauté until the onions are transparent.
  4. Add shrimp, scallops, haddock and lobster and sauté. If necessary change the order so that the meats cook evenly.
  5. Add potatoes, mix and stir.
  6. Add milk then simmer under low heat for at least an hour.
  7. Mix water and cornstarch in a small bowl. Slowly blend into the soup to thicken, repeat if necessary to make it thicker.
  8. Pour into a bowl, cover in grated cheese and ready-to-serve. Makes about six bowls.

Tartiflette au Brie

A recipe that combines potatoes, bacon, white wine and cheese to create a ready-to-serve meal or served up as a side. This recipe is said to have its origin from the French Alps, and is traditionally prepared with Reblochon cheese.

I have difficulty finding Reblochon cheese in local stores, so I opt to use Brie or Camembert instead. Make sure to remove the rind prior to slicing. It also helps if you freeze the cheese for thirty minutes or so to make slicing and removing the rind from the cheese easier.

Ingredients

  • 1½ pounds (680 g) of potatoes
  • ½ pound (225 g) of sliced bacon
  • ½ cup (120 ml) of minced onions
  • 2 cloves of garlic (5-10 g) pressed
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of salt
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of pepper
  • ½ cup (120 ml) of dry white wine
  • ½ pound (225 g) of brie or camembert (divided)

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Peel and cut potatoes into small cubes. Heat in the microwave on high for 3 to 6 minutes until soft. Immerse in water and set aside to prevent discolouration.
  3. Cut bacon into ¼ inch (0.6 cm) long pieces. Sauté over medium-high heat until browned. Drain, remove from heat and set aside.
  4. Oil pan, add onions and garlic. Sauté until browned.
  5. Add bacon and wine, cook for five minutes while stirring occasionally.
  6. Add potatoes, mix then season with salt, pepper and herbs.
  7. Remove from heat and divide.
  8. In a baking dish place first half of mixture and cover with slices of brie.
  9. Repeat for second layer of mixture and cover with remaining slices of brie.
  10. Place in the oven for about 20 minutes or until hot and bubbling.

Crunchy and Chewy Country Fried Potatoes

Other than bacon, this is one of my favourite breakfast side dishes. The ingredients are always readily available and can be made up while the rest of the breakfast is ready.

A combination of potatoes, onions, garlic butter and herbs. This recipe is sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (450 g) of potatoes
  • 1/2  cup (120 ml) of finely chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of garlic butter
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons (60 to 90 ml) of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of herbes de Provence or Italian seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) of pepper

Preparation

  1. Clean potatoes then cut into small ¼ inch (0.6 cm) cubes.
  2. On a skillet on medium heat, melt butter.
  3. Add olive oil and mix.
  4. Add potatoes, onions, salt and pepper to skillet.
  5. Stir contents on occasion. Add oil as necessary to make sure contents do not stick.
  6. When potatoes edges are a golden brown, remove from skillet.
  7. Place in a bowl, use paper towel to absorb any remaining oil.
  8. Ready-to-serve.

Tuscan Sausage

I am not too sure if this recipe has anything to do with dishes served in Tuscany. However, this dish combines Italian sausage, potatoes, mushrooms, peas and pasta sauce to create a ready-to-serve meal in less than an hour.

This recipe can be heavily varied based on the type of pasta sauce used.  I typically opt for a four-cheese or spinach pasta sauce, both variants are crowd pleasers!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (450 g) of Italian Sausage
  • 1 pound (450 g) of potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of garlic butter
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of cumin
  • 10 fluid ounces (285 g) of sliced mushrooms
  • 3 ounces (85 g) of diced onions
  • 3 ounces (85 g) of diced red peppers
  • 22 fluid ounces (650 g) of pasta sauce
  • 6 ounces (170 g) of thawed snow peas

Preparation

  1. Cook and slice up the sausage.  I typically use an outdoor grill to enhance the flavour.
  2. Peel and cut the potatoes into ¼ inch cubes (0.6 cm). Rinse then heat in the microwave until the potatoes have begun to soften for approximately 3 minutes (halved).
  3. In a 8.75 inch skillet (22 cm) melt butter on medium heat.  Add sliced mushrooms and cumin. Sauté until mushrooms are a golden brown. When done set aside.
  4. In a well-oiled 3.5 quart (3.3 l) sauté pan, cook onions and red peppers until onions become transparent.
  5. Add potatoes and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Add sausage, mushrooms and pasta sausage. Reduce heat to low/medium-low and simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  7. Add snow peas then allow to heat.  Ready to serve.
  8. Optionally place individual portions into a pot of stoneware then cover in mozzarella cheese.  Heat in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes at 350°F (180°C).