Shepherd’s Pie Recipe – Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day

NOTE: This recipe was originally published here last year around this time. It is a delicious and fairly easy St. Patrick’s Day treat that will make your friends and family happy. I hope that you like it. Okay, this isn’t really Shepherd’s Pie, it is technically Cottage Pie. If you want Shepherd’s Pie substitute the ground beef with ground lamb or, even better, leftover meat from a leg of lamb. I don’t usually have ground […]

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Be a Home Superstar Chef (Part 5 – High Heat)

This is part 5 of an open-ended and ongoing series of posts. In case you missed them, the previous posts were Part 1 – Good Pans, Part 2 – Shallots, Part 3 – Pine Nuts, and Part 4 – Knives. One thing that a lot of home chefs are afraid of is very high heat. I would venture to guess that just about every person that has ever tried their hand at cooking has decided […]

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Wines from the 2009 Presidential Inaugural Luncheon

Duckhorn Vineyards 2007 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc I ran across a story at KansasCity.com talking about the wines chosen to be served at President Barack Obama’s Inauguration Luncheon today; a Duckhorn Vineyards 2007 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, and a 2005 Golden Eye Anderson Valley Pinot Noir. Say the good folks at Duckhorn Vineyards: We are honored to announce that the 2007 Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc and the 2005 Goldeneye Anderson Valley Pinot Noir […]

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Goat Cheese Crostini

This is a great recipe to serve as an appetizer or a quick canapé. It is especially easy and quick in the event of an impromptu or unexpected holiday gathering. A crostini is a little toast topped with something tasty. There are many variations, but this one is simple and delicious. To begin preheat your oven to 350° and grab your favorite bread knife. Slice a baquette thinly (about 1/2″) on the bias and lay […]

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How to perfectly brine a turkey for Thanksgiving dinner

I think that most home chefs have gotten the word that brining is a crucial step when cooking turkey. If not, they should. Brining your bird brings flavor, texture, and most importantly, moisture to the table. If you are already hip to the miracle of brining, then let me show you how to step it up another notch. We will start by making a very rich, delicious vegetable stock. In a large roasting pan add […]

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Be a Home Superstar Chef (Part 3 – Pine Nuts)

It may seem strange that edible seeds found inside of pine cones are something that could elevate your cooking ability, but pine nuts are versatile and bring a lot to the table. The delicious taste of a toasted pine nut enhances both sweet and savory dishes. To me, the flavor of toasted pine nuts is reminiscent of a sugar cone for ice cream. While they can be eaten raw, they don’t have much flavor until […]

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Be a Home Superstar Chef (Part 2 – Shallots)

The first installment in this series discussed the importance of having a few high quality pans. Admittedly, despite being a necessity for the home chef, high quality pans are a big investment. Happily, the star of this article is much less expensive. Shallots look, taste, and smell like a cross between onions and garlic, but are neither. They are actually classified as different species from either one. Shallots grow in bunches of separate bulbs. The […]

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