In a small bowl, mix together: 2 tsp. coriander, 2 tsp. turmeric, 2 tsp. garlic powder, 2 1/2 tsp. ground ginger. In another small bowl, mix together: 2 tsp. cayenne, 2 tsp. cardamom, 2 tsp. cinnamon, 4 tsp. sesame seeds, 1/2 tsp. cloves.
Clean and cut 2 leeks into wide slices. In a dutch oven, brown in a little olive oil. Add 2 lbs. boneless leg of lamb cut into 1″ cubes. Brown meat on all sides. Add 1 onion, coarsely chopped. Add 1 sweet bell pepper julienned, 2-3 jalapeño peppers seeded and julienned. Brown. Deglaze with a 1/2 cup chicken broth. Stir together all ingredients. Sprinkle the mix of coriander, turmeric, garlic powder and ginger over the mixture and stir. Add 1 can whole tomatoes. Stir and bring to boil. Cover and turn to low heat.
In a small fry pan, heat 3 tbs. olive oil. Add cayenne, cardamom, cinnamon, sesame seeds, cloves mix. Stir over medium high heat until hot paste. Pour over lamb. Deglaze fry pan with a little chicken broth and pour residual spices and broth over lamb. Stir and cover. Simmer on low light for 2 hours.
Add 3 – 4 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes. Stir into lamb pot. Cover and bring to boil, then turn down to simmer for an hour or so until potatoes are tender but firm. Can substitute cauliflower for potatoes, simmer less time until firm but cooked through. Before serving, add 1 cup thawed frozen peas. Stir in and simmer uncovered for another 5 minutes.
Serve with naan and chutneys.
About 3 lbs. veal stew meat cut into 1″ chunks. Serves four. In a stock pot, brown the pieces of veal on all sides in a little olive oil. Brown in stages so meat isn’t touching. Deglaze after each stage with a 1/3 cup chicken broth and pour into a bowl with veal. Reserve all meat and broth in the bowl. In the same pot, brown 1 chopped onion, and 2 sliced leeks in a little olive oil. Pour all the meat and broth back into the stock pot and sprinkle 1 tablespoon flour over it. Season with generous amount of cracked black pepper and garlic powder. Stir. Add 1/2 cup dry white wine. Stir on high heat and when starts to boil cover. Reduce to simmer immediately for 1/2 hour.
Add 20 small, peeled pearl onions. Cover. Simmer another 1/2 hour. Add 10-12 shiitake mushroom caps, cut into strips. Cover. Simmer another 15 minutes. Add 1 crushed, seeded, peeled tomato, 20+ kalamata olives, pitted and halved. Simmer uncovered another five minutes. Serve over yellow rice.
For the rice. Heat a little olive oil over medium high heat in a saucepan. Add 1 cup kazmati rice and stir to toast. Season with black pepper. Add 2 cups chicken broth. Season with 1 tsp. turmeric, 1/2 tsp. cayenne. Stir and bring to boil. Cover and lower to simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Enough with the bland turkey and stuffing. Add a little spice to post-Thanksgiving weekend brunch. Prepare ahead the following so when guests arrive it’s just a jiffy:
Slice then quarter 2-3 chorizo or andouille sausages. Core slice and chop a yellow pepper. Quarter 6-8 crimini mushrooms. Slice and chop a sweet onion. In a large cast iron skillet, brown the vegetables in a little olive oil and butter. Put in a bowl to cool to room temperature or then refrigerate covered overnight.
When ready to cook for guests, turn oven to high broil. Crack 8 eggs into a medium sized bowl. Fold in a tablespoon + of plain yogurt. Fold until eggs are smooth but not beaten. Put the browned vegetables back into the skillet and warm up on medium high heat. Add the eggs and stir until set on the bottom, so sides peel off easily. Add chopped tomatoes and shred your favorite cheese on top. Place under the broiler until bubbly and brown. Take out and let sit for a few minutes. Slice like a pizza and serve with Tabasco sauces.
When not hosting Thanksgiving, bring stuffings. This is my fave.
Make 2 bags Pepperidge Farm Cornbread stuffing as directed. Separately, in a large skillet, in a little olive oil, brown one sweet onion, coarsely chopped. Add 2 cups peeled, cored, chopped tart green apples, 2 cups thickly sliced celery stalks. Brown. Add ground black pepper, garlic powder to taste. Blend mixture loosely into the cornbread stuffing. Put in a baking dish in 375 degree oven covered until heated through.
When ready to eat at your host’s home, pop into a hot oven uncovered to reheat and crisp on the top before serving.
Perfect side with Osso Buco, Braised Oxtails or even the traditional Thanksgiving Day turkey. Smooth. Nutty. Delicious.
Chop a large peeled turnip into small chunks and cover with water in a saucepan. Cover and boil until chunks are tender. Drain. Let cool to room temperature. In a bowl, hand mash with a 1/4 stick butter and 1/4 cup milk. Season with salt & pepper to taste.
Stir in 1/2 cup plain yogurt, and add a pinch of cayenne. With a hand mixer, blend until smooth and creamy. Pour into a casserole dish and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until brown on top.
Turkey is boring. So make this rich late autumn feast instead.
6 + lbs. short ribs cut 1/2″ thick and of like sizes. This recipe takes a whole bottle of red wine, so a French Beaujolais works well. It’s not too expensive, but good enough to be the main ingredient. The meat has to marinade overnight in most of the extended mirepoix. Best to divide the short ribs into two glass baking dishes to fit all of the vegetables.
For the marinade: 2 cups sliced celery; 2 cups sliced carrots; 1 cup sliced parsnips on a slant; 2 cups sliced leek; 2 cups parsley sprigs; 1 tsp. juniper berries or 1/4 cup gin. 1 bottle red wine; 1/2 cup red wine vinegar. 2+ tsp. red, green, black whole peppercorn mix. Any leftover celery, carrot, parsnip chunks.
Place short ribs evenly into 2 glass baking dishes. Divide all veggies evenly over the meat in each dish, as well as even amounts red wine vinegar, red wine, peppercorns, parsley sprigs on top. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove the short ribs from the marinade and dry with paper towels. Strain the vegetables from the liquid in a bowl. Reserve both. Dust short ribs with a little flour on all sides. In a large stock pot, brown meat on all sides, in a little olive oil in stages. Remove meat from pot with tongs to a large bowl after each browning stage. Add the strained vegetables to the pot and brown. Add 1/3 cup tomato paste to middle of the pot and brown.
Return the meat, wine liquid from marinade to the stock pot. Turn to medium high heat. Stir all veggies, meat, wine marinade lightly to blend. Cover and place pot on middle rack in oven at 375 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.
Peel 3 cups cipollini onions, add to the pot and stir in. Cover again and bake for another 1 hour until meat is tender. Add chicken broth if needed to keep meat moist. Uncover for 20 minutes to brown. Remove pot from oven and let stand for 15 minutes. Discard bones. Serve meat with veggies, onions, ladled sauce accompanied with horseradish mashed potatoes. Beats turkey!
Braised Veal Shanks
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 5-6 veal shanks, 2″ thick, towel dried. A shallow dish of flour to dredge. Coarsely chop-2 carrots, 3 celery stalks, 2 leeks, 1 small onion. Peel and section a large orange. Also on hand, 3 tbs. tomato paste. 1 cup dry white wine. 3 cups chicken stock, olive oil.
In a large stock pot, brown flour-dredged veal shanks in olive oil on all sides. Set aside in bowl. Brown carrots, small onion, celery. Add the tomato paste and after browning it up in the middle of the pot, stir into the veggies. Add the white wine and boil to 1/3 reduction. Add back the veal shanks. Add the orange sections and leeks. Stir. Season with 1/4 tsp. cloves, 4 cloves mashed garlic, 1 tsp. thyme, ground black pepper, salt to taste. Add the chicken stock and bring to boil. Cover. Bake in oven for 1 1/2 hours. Uncover. Bake for another 1/2 – 1 hour until thickens. Serve with horseradish mashed potatoes.