Friday, September 24, 2010


Lobster Pot Pie

One evening this summer I had the pleasure of dining waterfront in Connecticut overlooking the Long Island Sound.  One of the specials being offered was Lobster Pot Pie.  Who could resist?  It was a perfect meal which immediately shot to the top of my list of favorite foods.  I wish the restauranteurs would make this a permanent feature on their menu.  I deconstructed the entree and have come up with my version for you.  Although I first had the pot pie in the heat of summer I think it is even more perfectly suited to a crisp fall evening.  You could even make smaller portions to serve as a very elegant first course for Thanksgiving.  That would surely give your family and guests something to be thankful for!


meat from 2 steamed lobsters [each kept separate]
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 small potatoes, peeled and diced
2 cups half & half cream
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons instant [Wondra] flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons frozen green peas
1 teaspoon dry sherry
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, defrosted


Preheat oven to 400*
Parboil the peeled and diced carrots and potatoes until just fork-tender, drain and place in a mixing bowl.  In a small sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter but do not let it get any color.  Remove from heat and stir in the flour and the whisk in the half & half.  Return to low heat and add the salt, pepper, sherry and nutmeg.  Heat to just before simmer temperature while stirring,  but do not simmer or boil.  Remove from heat and add peas, potatoes and carrots.

Unfold the defrosted pastry sheet and cut two circles about 2 inches bigger than the rim of your [cereal-sized] bowls.

Place the meat from each lobster into each bowl and divide the cream/vegetable mixture over the lobster.  Cover each bowl with puff pastry and cut a small [1/2 inch] X vent in the center.  Place on a baking sheet and into the preheated oven on center rack for 20 minutes or until golden and flaky.

Serve in front of your fireplace* with a green salad and your favorite white wine. 
*if you don't have a fireplace, this dish calls for candles as the very least! 

Friday, September 17, 2010


This is a close and delicious relative of beef goulash but with a few tasty additions and of course the obvious use of chicken instead of beef.  A robust and flavor-rich dish just perfect for fall and winter yet it is light and subtle.  I like to serve this over wide egg noodles or with potato pancakes.  Warm, sweet pickled red cabbage is an obvious accompaniment to balance the zip of the spices.


1 frying chicken cut into 8 pieces
1/2 cup a.p. flour
1 medium onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 sweet red bell pepper diced
2 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup quality sweet paprika
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 clove garlic, smashed
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper [optional]
12 ounces fresh sliced mushrooms
1/3 cup oil for frying
1/2 cup good red wine


Lightly brown the onions, bell pepper and garlic and move to a casserole dish.* While the onions are browning, dredge the chicken in flour. Add the chicken pieces to the oil and lightly brown on both sides over medium high heat.  Move the chicken to the casserole dish.  Now saute the mushrooms just until wilted and then add the paprika, salt and black pepper.  Transfer the seasoned mushroom mixture [with the liquid] to the casserole.  Add the remaining ingredients to the casserole dish.  Cover and bake in a 350* oven for 2 hours.  

Remove from oven, remove chicken to a platter.  Stir the sauce and serve over noodles.

*can be made in your slow cooker on high for 4 hours.