Potato

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German Potato Salad

My wife requested I make this last night on Christmas Eve to go with our traditional supper of lobster. With me unemployed this year we could have never afforded to buy lobster, but fortunately my wife had 4 of them in the freezer from when she'd found them dirt-cheap and prefrozen back when I was among the employed.

I am not a big fan at all of the potato salad we all know so well from family picnics - drenched in mayonaise as it is. But German Potato Salad on the other hand is heaven on earth! It is a completely different thing altogether, with tart malt vinegar, bacon bits, celery and more. And it goes together surprisingly easy with a mini chopper food processor.

If you are vegetarian, I'm sure this may still be worthwhile, but to me the bacon really makes the recipe. Especially since I used my home made bacon this time around.

Kid Friendly Goat Stew

I've been digging through the deep freeze lately trying to weed out some of the older stuff, and use it up. I was in for another dig yesterday when I discovered a kg bag of goat stewing pieces, and figured I'd try to whip up a stew with them. So I let them thaw in the fridge for a day, and today took them out to start the stew. Note in the recipe below if you are going straight from the freezer then add 10 or 15 minutes to the oven time - but more on that in a bit. First a comment on what makes this "kid friendly". A couple of things really, but mainly the fact that I pureed a number of the ingredients that I knew the boys would balk at if they saw them in there. Namely - the whole 2 cups of carrots, and 2 of the 3 cups of potato. The 3rd cup of potato I diced up really small figuring that they would not balk at small pieces - and my gamble paid off. I did not have any turnip on hand, but I'd have pureed it as well if I did. Another thing which makes this kid friendly is that I meticulously picked through the goat to eliminate the copious bones. Goat bones can be small, and sharp - definitely a hazard for even an older child. Though if you wanted to go for a more authentic Mediterranean feel, you could eliminate that step.

Something I've been doing a lot of lately with meats is roasting them in the oven in my cast iron frying pan, and collecting and saving the juices which result. Though clearly in this case we would use the juices for the stew. In fact, I also dug out some juice I saved the other night from some pan-fried minute steaks, as well as some home canned lamb broth that my wife and I canned up early last year.

Reibkuchen - German Potato Pancakes / Hash Browns

Mmmm, there used to be a little stand in front of the train station in Cologne that was famous for the best Reibkuchen (literally : rubbed/grated cakes) in the city. I remember them well! This recipe is directly from Dr Oetker's "Schulkochbuch" (School Cook Book) which is what they use in cooking schools in Germany.

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I wanted to try something a little different, and since I already had the deep fryer on the counter from making french fries for supper last night, and still had some potatoes left from it, I figured "why not?". We don't eat deep fried food often, but when we do, we do it right :-)

Hunky Alan's Perogies

A friend on the brewers' list was chatting about perogies today, and in particular about Hunky Bill's Perogy Maker. It's been likely 20 years since I've made perogies - (I once made perogies and Bortsch for 120 people!), which as far as I'm concerned is far too long. I was still due a Christmas present from Melissa so I went out and picked up a Hunky Bill's for just shy of 30 bucks, to give it a try. Next time I'll time how long it takes because I'm not entirely convinced that it's quicker to do. Rolling out the 2 sheets of dough takes a fair bit of time. Aside from that, the assembly is far quicker with the device. But all told as mentioned I'm just not sure it is a time saver.

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Note they are darker simply because I rarely use anything but whole wheat flour

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