Review: Epicure Shepherds Pie

Shepherds pie is one of my favourites. But in a busy household, it rarely gets made. It’s talked about often; something that should be made. But isn’t. So when I saw Epicure selling a seasoning package – I thought I would try.

While it did take time (About 45 minutes) – not as long as if I made it from scratch!

first I put the seasoning pack into 1 1/4 cup water; set aside.

While the package recommends microwaving potatoes, I diced mine up and boiled them for 15 minutes.

While they were cooking I browned 1 lb of lean ground beef. I stirred in the reserved seasoning mixture, brought to a boil, reduced heat and simmered for 2 minutes.

Then I added in frozen corn.

While that was heating, I mashed the potatoes.

I stirred in 1/2 cup of milk with 1/4 cup of butter, while mashing the potatoes.

While the package said to just top meat mixture with potatoes and serve, I was going to make “Traditional” shepherds pie

I pulled out my casserole dish. Filled it with the meat mixture and topped with the mashed potatoes. Put in a preheated oven at 350. I then set it to broil to crisp up the potatoes.

Served hot to the family it was a hit

Review: The Spice Tailor Classic Butter Chicken

My coworker raved about this grocery store versatile Indian sauce package.

I’m a huge butter chicken fan and couldn’t wait to try!

I started as directed by putting the seasoning pack first in the fry pan but instead of using oil, as requested, I put in a good heaping 1 table spoon of butter.

Then threw in my 2 diced chicken breasts. I added an extra 1 table spoon of butter while cooking the chicken.

I Stirred in the main sauce once the chicken was almost cooked and simmered until meat is cooked through

I added diced red peppers. I threw them in at the end

The flavour was delicious. I served with rice. With the left overs (enough for my lunch) I added some cilantro – which I have to say the next day- I’m glad I did! The next time I make it – I’ll be adding some cilantro

Highly recommend this butter chicken sauce – authentic flavour and easy & quick to make! The whole family will love!

**This review was not sponsored **

Review: Epicure Pad Thai

Since I enjoyed the Greek Dressing Mix I decided to try the Pad Thai. Ofcourse, the night I decide to make it, I have no chicken or shrimp or peppers. Instead I substituted calamari and spiralled up some garden fresh zucchini. Guess what?!

It was delicious!

It was super simple too!!

Make up the Epicure Pad Thai seasoning pack and set aside.

I spiralled up some fresh zucchini and set aside.

I quickly sautéed up some frozen calamari while boiling up some broad rice noodles. I like to slightly undercook the rice noodles as I then throw them into my frying pan.

As the rice noodles are draining, heat up the frying pan with a tablespoon of sesame seed oil. Then drop in the zucchini noodles. Sauté them up a bit before adding the rice noodles.

Then pour in sauce.

Add 2 beaten eggs and stir-fry.

Just before serving add the juice of 1 lime. Top with the calamari and chopped nuts (if desired)

This is a family hit! Even without all the traditional ingredients!!

** if you really want to bring this recipe to the next level and have on hand- cook up some calamari & shrimp with fresh chopped garlic & butter. Then add to the pad Thai before serving! Such another flavour fusion

Review: Epicure Greek Dressing Mix

I have heard a lot of great things about Epicure. Being a gluten free family, I was curious and excited when I heard their products were gluten free! We found their Greek Dressing Mix to be amazing and flavourful!

Creamy Greek Feta Pasta Salad

Ingredients

Epicure Greek Dressing Mix

2 Tbsp crumbled feta cheese

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 basil olive oil

2/4 cups mayonnaise

1 chopped green bell pepper

2 diced green onions

10 garden tomatoes

1 1/2 cups gluten free Pasta

1) cook pasta al dente as per package. Let cool.

2) mix and whisk together vinegar, mayonnaise and oil to make the dressing

3) toss together ingredients with salad dressing

Enjoy!

Pear Salad

Pear salad …..so amazing. It’s more a summer salad. But as we near the end of winter, we need some reminder of warm summer nights.

If you have never tried this version of pear salad — you must! You won’t be sorry!! And if you want to show off to friends and family – make this salad the next time they are over!

The red wine vinegar and Dijon mustard help give the dressing the right amount of zing, while the goat cheese brings the settle balance to the sweetness of the Bartlett pear.

Ingredients

Spring salad mix

2 Bartlett pears (Dice up 1pear per person)

125g Soft unripened goat’s milk cheese – crumbled

2/3 cup olive oil

6 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 cloves diced garlic

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cracked pepper (or more to taste/preference)

200g crushed pecans

1/4 cup white sugar

Directions

1) In a frypan over medium heat, stir 1/4 cup of sugar with the pecans. Continue to stir gently until sugar melts and caramelizes. Be patient. Don’t turn up the heat or it will burn. Trust me.

Carefully cool on parchment paper.

2) In a 1 cup glass measuring cup blend the oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper. Let it sit for atleast an hour. Ideally, the longer it rests, the better the dressing flavours blend together. I try to make it the morning of the day I want to enjoy.

This dressing recipe makes enough for 4+ servings. The dressing is even flavour wise better the following day.

3) I layer lettuce, goat cheese, diced pear and candies pecans.

Layer 1:

Layer 2:

Drizzle the salad dressing over top and serve promptly. Enjoy!!

Review: The Wheatless Gourmet Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets

I was so excited when I saw this product!! Finally Gluten Free Puff pastry?!?! Eeek

So I bought some at our local gluten free specialty bakery. They warned me on purchased, it took some time to get use to when baking but I ignored any warnings – I was sold at gluten free puff pastry.

First reality check is the lovely puff pastry pictures are only suggestions – it’s a frozen log that takes waaaaay longer than the 20 minutes suggested to thaw. I found closer to 40 minutes.

Once ready, set up your area. I put down my parchment, with a sprinkling of Gluten Free Flour. I gently rollout out a square. I hardly modified how it came due to this being the first time.

Ahead of time, I fixed up 2 apples. Threw them in a fry pan with some unsalted butter, a couple of Tablespoons of ground cinnamon, a splash of orange juice, a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract and a few heaping tablespoons of brown sugar.

I stirred and let them lightly cook for about 15 minutes.

Set aside.

About a tablespoon or so of room temperature cream cheese as a base, on the pastry then put the cooled apple topping on top. Fold over.

I found I was able to make 3 large apple turnovers with one box.

I did use an egg wash to seal the ends and sprinkled sugar on top before placing into a preheated 350F oven.

Cooked for about 40minutes.

Oh. My. God. It tastes light and just like I remember gluten puff pastry to taste like. Delicious.

A nice alternative to making pastry from scratch! It will take getting use to and will be considered a treat but a nice option to have!

**this review was not sponsored**

Gluten Free MAC & CHEESE

Feeling the winter cold and wanting something warm and filling – homemade Mac & Cheese was just the thing.

Ingredients

1/4 cup butter

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 package of cream cheese

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 1/2 cups grated marbled cheese

2 cups milk

2 tablespoons cornstarch

**mix in a large pot above ingredients on medium heat until a nice mixture.

Meanwhile cook 1 package of gluten free macaroni according to package (al dente)

Put in a buttered baking dish mix in the cheese sauce. Top with cheese. Place in preheated oven at 350F

Cook for 15minutes

Enjoy

Gluten-Free Mushroom Pepper Chicken Linguine

Leftover gluten free linguine, chicken, ……not sure what to have for dinner. Do I make something new or try to use up the leftovers?!

Let’s see what I can put together with our leftovers….

Ingredients

1clove garlic. Diced

1/2 an onion. Diced.

Cup of sliced mushrooms

1 pepper. sliced.

1/2 cup butter.

3/4 cup vegetable broth

Pinch of salt

1/2 teaspoon cracked pepper.

Diced chicken

1) Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a heated fry pan set on medium heat. Add garlic and onion. Sauté for 4 minutes.

2) Add peppers. Add 2 tablespoons of butter. Stir. Sauté for another 4 minutes.

3) Add the rest of the butter to pan. Add mushrooms. Sauté for 5 min.

4) Add in diced chicken and broth. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve. Enjoy!

Gluten Free Waffles

I do have my own made-from-scratch pancake and waffle recipe.

Fluffy Yummy Gluten Free Pancakes

But let’s be honest, there are many days I don’t have the extra time to do that. With the wonderful gluten free Bob’s Red Mill Pancake Mix, quick, tasty waffles are easy!

What you need:

3 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pancake Mix

5 eggs

4 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups milk

In a bowl, whisk together ingredients.

Once well mixed, let sit for 10minutes.

It should be a nice thick-like consistency.

We have the Cuisinart Classic Waffle maker. I warm it to half-heat setting first. Then I lightly coat the top and bottom with olive oil.

A 1/2 cup of batter seems to be the right amount to create fluffy, full size waffles. *depending on your waffle maker – temperatures and amounts will vary

I find I need to re-coat with olive oil between each waffle or else a piece always stick!

But trust me when I say these are delicious!!

Enjoy!!

We serve ours with homemade maple syrup!

Simple Fish Dish

On a Thursday night; running late from work, finally get home…what to make for dinner.

In the freezer, is a large fillet of red sockeye salmon. It’s been there a while. When I last cooked the other half of the fillet, my husband complained it was “too strong” of fish.

I remembered what my grandma use to do when she was cooking a strong flavour fish- she’d cook it in milk!!

Ingredients

Fillet of fish

1/4 cup of unsalted butter

1/4 teaspoon of salt

Fresh cracked pepper

1 shallot

1 stick of celery

1 Cup of sliced mushrooms

1 cup milk + more as needed

In a pan at medium heat, melt butter. Spread melted butter around pan. Place fillet in pan. Add milk, salt, sliced shallot, sliced celery. Cover for 8 minutes.

Add mushrooms. Mix sauce. If milk appears to be evaporating, add a bit more. Cover for another 5 min. Cook until fish is cooked to desired consistency.

Serve over rice. Pour the milk sauce over the rice and fish. Enjoy!!