I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Mom! What's for Dinner?

Hi! We've all heard versions of that, haven't we?
Even if you don't have kids, or they've flown from the nest, there's: Honey, I'm home, what's for dinner?
My mother was a wonderful cook, everything from Julia Child gourmet to Italian specialties, to homestyle all-American comfort foods. She herself ate like the proverbial bird though and she often pondered the question, Why is it the woman's job to cook all the meals? In his defense my dad was also a very good cook and in later years he did quite a bit of the cooking. But still...that was like  something special, a favor. Since he was a man. Nope, bottom line, the kitchen buck stopped with mom.

Anyway. I try to prepare meatless meals now and then. And this veggie potpie sounded warm and  enticing.

(from USA Today Sunday insert in my local paper]:

The farmers market is still bustling and full of lovely autumn produce. I stocked up on pickles.

And beans for a white chili that's on our to-try list. Lovely broccoli and tiny brussels sprouts....

...and I picked up the makings for the potpie.

Shiny red potatoes, cremini mushrooms, a white cabbage, sweet onions....

You could perhaps use regular white mushrooms but the baby bellas/ creminis are so tasty and hold their shape...almost meatlike. Most supermarkets carry them, if you don't have a farmers market.

The prep calls for oven roasting the veggies for 20 minutes. This is not long enough to cook the diced potatoes. Next time I will either start them first, allow a total of 40 minutes for them, or precook in the microwave.
I also omitted the thyme, not a flavor we like..added parsley and a smidge of tarragon instaed.

The vegetables roasted in the 9 x 13" pan are quite crowded and while they cook nicely they create a lot of liquid. Pour this off before you add the cheese sauce to avoid a wet, soggy potpie.

[And what the heck is medium dice? I went with 1/2" (and obviously missed, as you can see) but I must check that out. I have no culinary education to fall back on. Why can't they just say?] I also brushed the patchwork-y topcrust with an egg beaten with cold water. It looks pretty!

The crust was store bought as directed. [Mrs. Smith's]. This was a brand I'd never tried and it was difficult to work with, the top just fell in pieces. But it was very good, flaky, crisp, yummy.

The recipe is NOT so easy. But worth it, because it was very delicious.

Here's my new oven! It is wonderful! I love it. I thought I didn't miss having an oven. It's been almost a year since my previous oven finally rusted through so completely it was unusable. Wall ovens don't come cheap! But are my preference, I hate baking stuff down on the floor.

We made baked apples for dessert. Some kind of heirloom red and yellow stripey kind, filled with walnuts, cranberries and dot of butter, lots of cinnamon and a drizzle of maple syrup. Oh that made the house smell so good! Served warm with a blob of Splenda sweetened fat free Greek yogurt and a cup of. peach tea.

Winter should be cosy here at the beach!

PS the potpie made very nice leftovers too...

It's a keeper! Here's the link:  Potpie


gone to the beach......