Thursday, July 02, 2009

Beef, Mushroom, Bacon, & Olive Pot Pie

Oh Darling Hearts

Only occasionally do I feature something I've already purchased as something I heart, but this week? I bought a Pie Bird. As in a four and twenty blackbirds were baked in a pie kind of bird.
And this wouldn't exactly be news except that tonight I used it (him? her? no. it) in the making of a pie so amazing it has wiped all thoughts of material goods out of my mind completely. G.O.N.E. Hmm. I think it was octopus jewellery? anyway.

Four and Twenty

Beef, Mushroom, Bacon, & Olive Pot Pie
(this recipe is most definitely not mine. It was featured in a fundraising recipe book so it didn't originally come from there either.)

2 cloves of garlic, diced (I used 2 inches of pre-crushed garlic from a tube)
1 onion (I used 2)
125g bacon, diced
1 cup of mushrooms, diced
1kg beef, diced (3cm cubes)
1-2 heaped tablespoons wholegrain mustard (I used 1.5)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup red wine (I used Cabernet Sauvignon)
440g tin crushed tomatoes (I used 400g cause that's what came in the tin)
1 handful black olives (I used 2 handfuls! I love olives)
1-2 sheets puff pastry

Preheat oven to 200°C

In one pan, sautée the onions and garlic in two tablespoons of olive oil until softened but not browned. Add the mushrooms and bacon and stir.

In another pan cook the beef cubes until sealed. This might need to be done in batches, adding the beef to the onions, mushrooms, bacon, and garlic mixture as you go.

In the pan you used to seal the meat put in the tomato paste and mustard, deglazing with the red wine. Stir well to get all the scrapings off the bottom of the pan.

Combine the ingredients from both pans, add the crushed tomatoes, and bring to a simmer and cook until the beef is tender. The recipe I used called for 1-1.5 hours but I didn't realise that until I had started cooking and it was already getting late so I made do with 30 minutes and the beef wasn't tough at all. But I guess it depends on the quality of the beef and uh ... I don't know anything about beef. If it looks like it's getting a bit dry, add some water, or more red wine! Stir in the olives.

Place a pie bird in your pie dish (hee!) and surround it with the delicious delicious pie filling. Top with a sheet of puff pastry (apparently, if you are sans pie bird (a sad life) then a hole cut in the pastry will work just as well. But it will be much less amusing) and make leaves with any leftover pastry. Brush the pastry with an egg wash (or a milk wash) (or forget this part because it seems like too much hassle) (oops) and bake for 30 minutes.

Serve and enjoy!

Perfect for the cold cold threatening storms winter evening Wellington served up tonight. It's moorish and amazing.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Gerard Manley Hopkins (28 July 1844 – 8 June 1889)

Water droplets
And the sunlight sidled, like dewdrops, like dandled diamonds
From The Furl of Fresh-Leaved Dogrose Down

It only took two and a bit years but I finally finally finally found a book his poetry for sale. Previously? I danced around Shakespeare & Co in Paris with a thin worn tome in my hands before finally realising that it was essays about Hopkins' work and life (he was a jesuit priest and his poems were never published in his lifetime, I don't think he ever intended them to be published at all!) and nearly crumpling down right then and there.

Antiquarian Books

His poem Spring is one of the two poems I know by heart, word for word, beginning to end.

Nothing is so beautiful as spring—
When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;
Thrush’s eggs look little low heavens, and thrush
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring
The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing;
The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush
The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush
With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.

What is all this juice and all this joy?
A strain of the earth’s sweet being in the beginning
In Eden garden.—Have, get, before it cloy,
Before it cloud, Christ, lord, and sour with sinning,
Innocent mind and Mayday in girl and boy,
Most, O maid’s child, thy choice and worthy the winning.

The other poem I know off by heart? Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll!

One, two! One, two! and through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back.

I won't go on.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Week Twenty-Six

365 in 2009!

Sunday: the first time I ever tried french toast with bacon and maple syrup
The first time I ever had French Toast with Bacon and Maple Syrup. I can't believe I ever doubted how amazing it tastes.

Monday: Tiny overpriced coffee and finall returned necklace
A teeny tiny overpriced coffee and the necklace that took tootoo long to be altered.
(chain shortened and split so it doesn't run through the top of the horseshoe)

Tuesday: King and Queen of Spain
I went to watch the powhiri (maori greeting) for the King and Queen of Spain. Because really? how often do you see royalty?

Wednesday: my train hit a person!
It took 2 hours to get home on the train. Because it hit someone! they survived, thankfully, but the train & scene had to be inspected for a long long time before we could move on.
I yelled at a large man who was giving the train guard attitude whenever he updated us on the situation.

Thursday: GHD burns
I pinched my skin with my GHDs for a second and watched as the blisters came up. The burn didn't hurt for about 14 hours.

Friday: Craig baked his first cake
I helped Craig bake his first cake.

Saturday: cold destroyed roses
I walked home from my hair appointment, and paused by the rose gardens.


Heidi Hair!