Donna's Daily Dish
Inspiring people to create every day recipes
After going to two food stores, I was unsuccessful in locating frozen puff pastry. As rain was predicted, I opted for a something different. I considered corn muffin topping, however, that seemed more appropriate for chicken pot pie. I could have made a pie crust, but I decided to make Callie’s Buttermilk Biscuit as a topping. Instead of individual biscuits, I rolled it out and cut into a circle to cover the stew. Instead of hash browns, I went with tiny cubed potatoes that I par-cooked.
The stew portion of the recipe came together quite easily. The cut beef is seasoned with salt and pepper and is lightly browned in a skillet with butter. This was done in two batches. Once the beef was done, in the same skillet more butter is added and the flour, tomato paste and garlic are cooked until slightly darkened. Whisking in a little at a time, broth is added and cooked until thickened. Off heat, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, vegetables, potatoes, meat and salt are mixed in.
If you’re going the skillet route for baking, make sure you use a large enough skillet. I started out with a small cast iron skillet, but needed to switch to a 10-1/2-inch to make sure everything would fit. I topped the stew with my biscuit and baked using my convection setting at 450° for approximately 15 minutes, or until the biscuit was golden.
What a tasty pot pie. The depth of flavor from the addition of tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce was wonderful. I used frozen peas and carrots along with the cube potatoes that worked perfectly. The biscuit topping, however, was too heavy in taste for the stew. The next time, I visit a third food store or prepare a pie crust for the top.
I’ve decided that January is going to be souper month. I’ve already shared a great recipe for Beef Barley Soup and today, I have another, Black Bean Soup. The recipe is from the cook book “Soup Suppers” by Arthur Schwartz.
For this recipe you’ll need 1-pound dried black beans, 1 large bay leaf and 1 medium green pepper. For the sofrito: 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (preferably Spanish), 4 large garlic cloves, 1 large onion (1-1/2 cups), 1 tablespoon ground cumin, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, tiny hot green or red chili pepper (1 teaspoon or more to taste). To serve, 8 cups cooked rice, chopped raw onion, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, crumbled queso blanco or American farmers cheese, pico di gallo, pickled and sliced jalapeños.
Ever since I made J. Kenji López-Alt 30-Minute Pressure Cooker Pea Soup, I wanted to do this recipe in the same manner. This soup can be made in an InstaPot/pressure cooker. I began by par-cooking the beans following the directions from the website “The Spruce Eats” and also adding a bay leaf to the pot.
After the beans were done, I drained them in a colander and set them aside. I rinsed the pressure cooker and picked up the soup recipe with the sofrito being made in the same pot. When onions were translucent, I added the par-cooked beans, 6-1/2 cups of water and cooked the soup under high pressure for 30 minutes. You can make the soup the traditional way. The beans will cook for approximately two hours and additional 30-40 minutes after the sofrito is added. With an InstaPot/Pressure Cooker, I was done in approximately one hour. After cooking, I tasted the soup and adjusted the seasonings then puréed in my KitchenAid®️ K400 Blender.
The soup came out scrumptious. The beans were tender, the soup had a wonderful flavor from the sofrito and, after puréeing, a lovely creamy texture. I’m quite pleased with the outcome of this soup. For easy weeknight meal, all it needs is a salad.
Black Bean Soup
From “Soup Suppers”
HarperPerennial, a Division of Harper Collins Publishers ©1994
1-pound dried black beans, rinsed and picked over, then soaked overnight in cold water to cover by several inches
1 large bay leaf
1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
For the sofrito:
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil preferably Spanish
4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 large onion, finely chopped (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 large green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon (or more) finely chopped, seeded, tiny hot green or red chili pepper
8 cups cooked white rice
Chopped raw onion
Shredded Monterey Jack, crumbed queso blanco, or American farmer cheese
pico de gallo, or pickled, sliced jalapeños
Advanced preparation: May be refrigerated for up to a week; it freezes perfectly for up to a year. The soup must be thinned with water while reheating.
Donna’s notes: This soup can be made in an InstaPot/pressure cooker. I began by par-cooking the beans following the directions from the website “The Spruce Eats” and added a bay leaf to the pot.
Once the beans were done, they were drained and set aside. I picked up the soup recipe in step 2 with the sofrito. When it was done, the par-cooked beans and 6-1/2 cups of water were added to the pot and covered. The soup was cooked under high pressure for 30 minutes.
Beef Stew Pot Pie
Southern Living Test Kitchen
December 12, 2023
Active Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Note: this recipe can also be prepared in a skillet and baked on a rimmed baking sheet to prevent any possible overflow onto oven floor
1 (17.3-oz.) pkg. frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed (such as Pepperidge Farm)
2 lb. top sirloin steak (about 1 1/2 inch thick), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 1/2 tsp. kosher salt, divided
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
1/3 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped (2 Tbsp.)
2 1/2 cups beef broth
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves, plus more for garnish
2 (10-oz.) pkg. frozen mixed vegetables (green beans, peas, corn, and carrots)
2 cups frozen cubed hash brown potatoes (from 1 [32-oz.] pkg., such as Ore-Ida)
1 large egg, beaten
Skillet Beef Stew Pot Pie
Omit Step 1. Preheat oven to 375°F with rack in top third position. Prepare Step 2 as directed, using a 12-inch cast-iron skillet. Omit Step 4. Roll 1 puff pastry sheet out on a lightly floured work surface to a 12-inch square. Trim about 1 1/2 inches from each corner to form a rough circle. Roll pastry up onto rolling pin. Working quickly, unroll pastry over filling in skillet. Fold excess pastry edges under, and then gently tuck inside skillet (do not press pastry into filling). Using kitchen shears, cut 4 (1-inch-long) slits into top of pastry. Brush top with beaten egg. Place skillet in oven, and bake at 375°F until edges turn light golden, about 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350°F; continue baking until pastry is puffed, golden, and crisp, 30 to 35 minutes. Garnish with thyme leaves.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.