Disclosure: I was compensated for creating this recipe and in the process I discovered a new family favourite.
Comfort Food Makeover with Turkey Farmers of Canada
Don’t be afraid of the gnarly looking celeriac, also called celery root. Trust me that once you start cooking and eating it, you will be totally hooked and you will start looking for new ways to use it. When I was asked to create some new Comfort Food recipes for Turkey Farmers of Canada I knew that there somehow I would find a way to pair some tender, flavourful turkey with one of my favourite vegetables that smells of richly buttered celery, celeriac. I love mixing celeriac with sweet potato for a splash of colour.
I have a feeling that peeling celeriac may be one of the reasons people steer clear of it. It is much easier to peel than potatoes, which I loathe peeling. You simply take a large knife, cut a piece of the bottom off the celeriac off so it sits stably on the board and do the same to the top so you can see where you need to slice off the rest of the skin. Holding the celeriac steady, following the shape of the celeriac with your knife, slice off the skin in strips from top to bottom.
This casserole is absolutely ideal for leftover turkey. I used a boneless, skinless turkey breast because it is the most simple cut of turkey to use but not having to take the step of roasting the turkey breast would cut out 20 minutes of the prep of the dish. I am planning on getting a pretty big turkey from my butcher this year, probably about 18 lbs, because I really want lots of leftover turkey and I know that some of it is destined to be in this casserole. I am a huge fan of batch cooking and if I can have a good quantity of fully cooked turkey at my disposal, I can make flavourful meals like this relatively quickly.
You will find this recipe over on the Turkey Farmers of Canada site along with a whole bunch of other drool-worthy comfort food recipes prepared by some of my blogging friends. They can be found under the ‘Comfort Food’ category.
Click here to go directly to the recipe for the Turkey Cottage Pie with Celeriac & Sweet Potato Puree.
1 comment December 3, 2013
For my addition to Pie Week with my blogging friends, the Theme Weavers, I humbly submit my very rustic looking apple pie.
Everyone needs to stop worrying about making a ‘perfect’ pie crust. I am always hearing that people are scared of making pies because the pastry is just too hard to do. TV chefs and bloggers alike warn about ‘over-working the dough’ as though you are going to end up with a ball of gluten if you knead the dough together a few extra times. Pastry isn’t the easiest of things to make but please stop being intimidated by the idea of making your own pies from scratch and end up with another one of those store bought pies with those manufactured pie crusts that yield a crumbly rather than flakey crust along with overly sweetened filling at Christmas or Thanksgiving. A pie is supposed to be a simple dessert that generally evokes nostalgia-laden thoughts of pastoral living. Just get on with getting the job done and don’t stress so much about all those little rules you have heard people tell you about pie dough. If you are starting to worry that there will be too many cracks or the edges of the pie just aren’t right, let the adjective, ‘rustic’, be your guide.
I follow some of the basic principles of pie making: I use cold water and cold fat, but I don’t obsess over ever detail. I’ve even seen a TV chef recommend chilling the flour. I mean, come on! It is just pie. Granted, the idiom, “as easy as pie” is certainly misleading but let go of the quest for a pie that looks good enough for Martha Stewart (her magazine, not her dreadful Twitter photos).
My pies aren’t always the prettiest to look at but the crust is always flakey and they are stuffed to the brim, and then some, with fruit. Do I sometimes swear when I make pies because the dough cracked or tore as I rolled it out? Yes, yes I do. Does the filling sometimes bubble over and start to burn on the bottom of my oven? You betcha it does! Do I swear some more? Yeppers! Does this stop me from making pies? No. Even if they collapse in the centre because the apples were piled so high (see below for an example of my collapsed pies), these pies are simply much better than anything store bought.
Here are some of my tips for an imperfectly delicious pie:
- roll the dough out between two sheets of wax paper or parchment paper
- use a food processor if you have one – it will save you so much trouble
- put a piece of foil on the bottom of the oven to save you a headache later from any spillage
- brush the edges with beaten egg before putting the top layer on because it will help contain filling ooze
- don’t let the fear of an imperfect pie keep you from making one
- put a damp piece of paper towel under your board so it doesn’t slip around as you roll out the dough
- don’t chill the dough for too long, a half hour will do, because if it is too firm it is hard to roll and will likely crack around the edges. Fixable, but still a pain.
- keep the rolling pin steady with your finger as you hold the handle when the dough is rolled onto the rolling pin for transfering to the pie plate, otherwise it could spin off into a heap. If that happens you will use your whole cussing repertoire. Ask me how I know this…
- 2¼ cup all purpose flour
- ½ cup cold lard, cubed
- ½ cup cold butter, cubed
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tbsp white vinegar
- 2 tbsp cold water
- 12 baking apples (such as Northern Spy)
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- ⅓ cup flour
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ⅛ tsp cloves
- ½ cup dark brown sugar (more if you like it less tart)
- 1 egg, lightly beaten for brushing
- In a food processor, pulse the flour, butter, lard, salt and sugar together until you get pea sized pieces of the fat.
- Pour in the liquid all at once and pulse until the dough becomes a large ball.
- Turn it out onto a floured surface and shape it into a ball. Cut the ball in half and shape each half into a disc and wrap each in plastic wrap. Chill in the fridge while you prepare the filling.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Peel and core a dozen apples. Cut each apple into eight and toss them in a large bowl with the lemon juice.
- Sprinkle over the flour, spices and sugar. Stir it all gently so that each piece of apple gets coated with the sugar and flour mixture.
- Place a large piece of parchment paper on a board or on the counter. Dust it with flour and put one of the discs of dough on it. Dust the top of the dough with flour as well.
- Put another piece of parchment paper on top and begin rolling out the dough. As the dough gets pressed out, lift off the parchment and dust with flour. Turn the dough a quarter turn and use the bottom piece of parchment to lift the dough up so you can dust the underside of the dough with flour. Use the parchment as an extension of you hands so you touch the dough as little as possible.
- When the dough is about 12″-13″ in diameter, roll the dough onto the rolling pin. Unroll the dough onto your pie dish and gently fit the dough inside the dish with the excess hanging over the edge of the dish.
- Brush the edge with beaten egg and pour in the apples. Once you get the first layer of apples in, you will need to start strategically placing the rest of the apples so that you can fit the maximum amount in without the apples falling off of the mound.
- Roll the second disc of dough out the same way you did the first. Roll the dough onto your rolling pin and place it over the apples and edges of the bottom layer of dough.
- Gently press the bottom and top layer of dough together. Using a knife, cut off the excess dough. Place your index fingers 1 cm (1/2″) apart on the edge of the dough and push the dough up with your thumb between your two fingers. Repeat around the circumference of the pie to create a crimped edge.
- Brush the top with the beaten egg and sprinkle with coarse granulated sugar (optional).
- Bake at 425 degrees F for 20 minutes and then turn the heat down to 350 degrees F for 50 minutes to an hour or until you hear the filling bubbling and the apples are fork tender.
Kirsten / Comfortably Domestic – Mile High Apple Pie
Katie / The Hill Country Cook – New Mexico Apple Pie
Anne / From My Sweet Heart – Cranberry Cherry Ricotta Pie
Haley / The Girlie Girl Cooks – Coconut Cream Pie
Jeanne / Inside NanaBread’s Head – Black and White Coconut Tart
Mads / La Petite Pancake – Pineapple Pie
Monica / The Grommom – Papaya Pie
Carrie / Bakeaholic Mama – Chocolate Cream Pie
Kat / Tenaciously Yours – Grandma’s Chocolate Pie
Kirsten / Comfortably Domestic – Maple Sweet Potato Pie with Toasted Swiss Meringue
Shanna / Pineapple Coconut – Boozy Pumpkin Egg Nog Pie
Carrie / Bakeaholic Mama – Sweet Potato Tartlets
Christina / Buffy and George – Deep Dish Apple Pie
Madeline / Munchin in the Mitten – Sweet Potato Pie
Allison / Decadent Philistines – Refrigerator Pumpkin Porter Chocolate Pie with Toasted Pumpkin Marshmallow “Meringue”
Lauren / Climbing Grier Mountain – Mini Butternut Squash Pie Stacks with Marshmallow Frosting
Megan / Country Cleaver – Biscoff Pie with Whiskey Mallow Fluff
Shanna / Pineapple Coconut – Persimmon, Pear and Brandy Pie with Vanilla Bean Crumble
Kirsten / Comfortably Domestic – Very Berry Cherry Pie
7 comments November 21, 2013
This post is part of the Canadian Food Experience Project which began June 7 2013. As we (participants) share our collective stories through our regional food experiences, we hope to bring global clarity to our Canadian culinary identity.
No preserve, no matter how innovative or delicious, can ever take the place of simple strawberry freezer jam in my heart. I love how you get the taste of the fresh strawberries along side the toothache inducing sweetness from the 7 cups of sugar that goes into one batch. It seems to glow from within the jar in its shiny red, sugary perfection. It is the only jam I will ever eat in a peanut butter and jam sandwich. It is the best jam on a slice of homemade bread because it does not compete with the bread. It compliments the bread with the simple flavours of fresh strawberries that were picked months ago, and sometimes years ago, held in a kind of stasis by the freezer and an abundance of sugar.
For as long as I can remember I would go strawberry picking in the summer with my dad. He would put me to work and we wouldn’t leave the field until he felt we had enough strawberries. We would haul them home and I would eat my weight in fresh strawberries while helping my mom make several batches of freezer jam. We would spend several hours in a type of assembly line. My dad would hull the strawberries, I would mash them and mix in the sugar. We always followed the recipe exactly. This is one of the few times where I still actually follow a recipe when I make the jam in my own house. Although it wasn’t required according to the recipe, my mom would sterilize the jars in the oven in a roasting pan. We would make upwards of 2 dozen jars of jam in some years so that it would last me through the whole year.
When I was a kid, I would go through about a jar of jam a week on either peanut butter and jam sandwiches, or because I had a huge repertoire of food I liked, peanut butter and jam on toast. Even when we moved into a house that had a huge plum tree in the front yard and my mom made plum jam from the buckets of plums from that tree, I never strayed from my devotion to strawberry jam. I loved the smell of the plum jam but my love for my jam was monogamous.
I now experiment with all kinds of different jams since I am completely addicted to canning but every once in a while, I will make a batch of this strawberry jam. I may have grown up and so has my palate, but now and then nothing will beat a peanut butter sandwich with this bright and sugary strawberry jam.
I’m not including a recipe with this post because I follow the freezer jam recipe included in the box with the pectin. I never stray from it despite the high volume of sugar.
2 comments October 16, 2013