October

October

October 31, 2011

Halloween .....Tis' Now the Very Witching Time of Night! Eat, Drink and Be Scary!

The Maine House is ready for Trick or Treaters! After an unexpected Nor'Easter that hit the East Coast on Friday, we believe the pathway to Estelle's has been cleared to make way for all the little ghoulies and ghosties and Things That Go Bump in the Night!



Frost, er' Snow on the Pumpkin



Before the snow, Mae Mobley was "on patrol" as this
little guy decided to carve his own Jack O' Lantern!
Citizens Arrest!

Down in Hot-Lanta, The Divine Miss M and Little Luke celebrated with a church Halloween party! So cute...
the Good Witch of Atlanta and her little nightmare!


BOO!


Back home in Texas, Greg and Jenn whipped up a batch of R.I.P cupcakes since our beloved Texas Rangers lost their chance at winning the
World Series!



Devils Food with Buttercream Fudge Frosting and Milano's!


Time for Estelle's to serve up some delicious Halloween Treats!




PUMPKIN PECAN CRUNCH CAKE
1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin
1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
3 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
6 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice, divided
1 tablespoon  Pure Vanilla Extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 package (18 1/4 ounces) yellow cake mix
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
Whipped cream 
Spiced Pecans


Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix pumpkin, milk, eggs, sugars, 5 teaspoons of the pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and salt in large bowl until well blended. Pour into 13x9-inch baking pan which has been sprayed with no stick cooking spray.  Mix cake mix and remaining 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice in medium bowl with wire whisk. Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over pumpkin mixture. Sprinkle with pecans. Drizzle evenly with melted butter.  Bake 50 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serve with whipped cream and Spiced Pecans.




SPICED PECANS
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons  Pumpkin Pie Spice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg white
3 cups pecan halves


Preheat oven to 250°F. Mix sugar, pumpkin pie spice and salt in small bowl. Beat egg white in large bowl until foamy. Add nuts; toss to coat well. Add spice mixture; toss to coat nuts evenly. Spread nuts in single layer on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake 1 hour, stirring once. Cool slightly and break apart. Cool completely. Store in airtight container up to 2 weeks.




 GINGERBREAD PUDDING CAKE
1 (14.5 oz.) package gingerbread mix
1/2 cup half and half or Evaporated Milk
pinch of cinnamon
pinch of ground ginger
1/2 cup golden raisins
2 1/4 cups water
3/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
Whipped cream

Spray a 4 quart slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the gingerbread mix, half and half, cinnamon and ginger and raisins until moistened. The batter will be very thick. Spread the batter evenly over the bottom of the slow cooker. In a medium saucepan over medium high heat, stir together the water, brown sugar, butter and vanilla. Bring mixture to a boil and carefully pour over the batter in the slow cooker. Set the slow cooker on the high heat setting and cover. Cook for 2 hours (the center will still appear very moist and a pudding like consistency). Remove the liner from the slow cooker or just turn the cooker off and allow to stand, uncovered, for an additional 45 minutes. Cake will be slightly cooled. Serve a spoon full of warm cake and pudding like center in a beautiful dessert bowl and top with a  whipped cream ! THIS IS AMAZING…..I USED EVAPORATED MILK….A WINNER!!!!!

Luke and Rowan...A Little Nightmare and Princess Jasmine!
Ah, to be three again! HAPPY HALLOWEEN!





October 28, 2011

The Reading Corner....The Blue Bottle Club

John Lennon once said something to the effect of  
"life is what happens while you're busy making other plans."



In the wake of the depression of 1929, four girlfriends, Letitia, Eleanor, Mary Love and Adora gather in a cold, dusty attic on Christmas day to make a solemn pact. "Our dreams for the future," they whisper, as they place tiny pieces of paper holding their life wishes into the blue bottle. They have no idea what the future has in store for them. Do any of us?



 When they look into the future all they see is the desires of their hearts. For Letitia the dream is marriage to a prosperous man and children. For Eleanor the dream is a life in social service to the needy. For Mary Love it is a life of solitude dedicated to her art. Adora's dream is stardom in Hollywood, California. At this tender age, God's will eludes all of them.


The blue bottle, which contained the young girls future wishes was hidden in the rafters of one of the girls' homes. When the home is demolished 65 years later, the bottle is located and put into the hands of a local TV reporter, who is intrigued with the potential story. She spends the next several months locating and contacting all four women to find out if they were able to achieve their teenage goals.
During their youthful girlhood years, all of them were churchgoers, yet God was not real to them. It was only when their circumstances were affected by the Depression of the 1930's, by illness, or by the choices they made that they came to realize that God is was with them for better or for worse, always working to refine their faith and strengthen their trust in him. Sometimes that means that before we can see God's true face, we must go through the purifying fire. Clearly dreams change the path we take, which often ends up not being the path we choose. Through this process, the reporter is able to find out more about herself and the whole process turns her to God, who helps her discover her own dreams. The story is full of hope and inspires the reader to rethink his/her purpose in life. Once again, Penelope Stokes composes a Hallmark of a book!

 A few favorite quotes from the book were,
"family sometimes is where you find it, based on spirit, not genetics - the people your soul connects with, the people who fit in your heart."
Adora softly stated,
"It's been a very good life. And you can bet that when I go to meet my Maker, I won't be asking any foolish questions about why things didn't turn out the way
 I wanted them to be." 

Dear Ellie, with all of her learned wisdom replied, "But sometimes your dreams are not as important as your calling."






October 27, 2011

The Harvest....A Celebration!




COUNTRY BREAD SANDWICHES




Choose a few different kinds of bread, such as baguettes, ciabatta, or Italian bread, cut into thick pieces and sliced horizontally, or pita wedges, sliced horizontally. Fill breads with assorted filling combinations, such as:


•Sliced brie, thinly sliced red onion, and salad greens with apple butter

•Sliced turkey and sliced Swiss cheese with cranberry chutney

•Grilled sliced vegetables and sliced smoked Gouda cheese, with pesto spread on 1 slice of bread and whole-grain mustard on the other

•Bacon, arugula or spinach, and tomato slices with mayonnaise flavored with curry powder, salt, and pepper

On nippy days, create a makeshift warmer using tea lights in a
bowl with a cooling rack atop to hold the cider.
 Or, use a crockery cooker or an insulated carafe.

SPICED POMEGRANATE- APPLE CIDER


1 gal. pasteurized apple cider or apple juice
2 16-oz. bottles pomegranate juice or
4 cups cranberry juice
1/4 cup maple syrup or packed brown sugar
6 fresh kumquats, halved, or six 3-inch thin strips of orange peel
16 inches stick cinnamon, broken
12 cardamom pods, lightly crushed to expose seeds
12 whole cloves
Thinly sliced oranges with cloves pressed in peel and/or cinnamon sticks tied with orange peel strips

 In a large Dutch oven or kettle combine cider, pomegranate or cranberry juice, and maple syrup or brown sugar. For spice bag, cut a double thickness of 100-percent-cotton cheesecloth into a 12-inch square. Place halved kumquats or orange peel, 16 inches stick cinnamon, cardamom pods, and cloves in center of cloth. Bring the corners of cloth together and tie closed with clean kitchen string. Add spice bag to cider mixture.
 Bring mixture to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove spice bag and discard. Serve cider warm or at room temperature. If desired, garnish with clove-studded orange slices and cinnamon sticks.

The star anise and combination of fresh fall fruits and dried fruits
make this country-style dessert something to talk about.
Find star anise in the spice aisle.

HARVEST FRUITS CRISP



1/2 cup apple cider or juice
2 star anise
3/4 cup dried fruit, such as dried apricots, cut into strips; dried plums (prunes), quartered; dried tart cherries; and/or golden raisins
5 Jonathan or Granny Smith apples, peeled if desired
3 firm, ripe Bosc or red Bartlett pears, peeled if desired
1 cup fresh cranberries
2 Tbsp. maple syrup or honey
1/4 tsp. apple pie spice or ground cinnamon
1 cup regular rolled oats
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. apple pie spice or ground cinnamon
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup coarsely chopped almonds or pecans
Sweetened Orange Whipped Cream

 For filling, heat cider and anise in a small saucepan until just simmering on the edges. Remove from heat. Add dried fruit; cover and let stand 10 minutes. Remove and discard star anise. (Do not drain fruit.)
Meanwhile, core and thinly slice the apples and pears. Place apples, pears, and cranberries in a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. Add dried fruit mixture, maple syrup, and 1/4 teaspoon apple pie spice or cinnamon; toss gently to combine. Spread evenly in the dish.
For topping, in a medium bowl stir together oats, brown sugar, flour, and 1 teaspoon apple pie spice. Cut in butter until crumbly. Stir in nuts. Sprinkle evenly over filling. Bake in a 375° oven for 40 to 45 minutes or until fruit is tender and bubbly and topping is golden. Cool on a wire rack about 30 minutes. Serve warm with Sweetened Orange Whipped Cream









Sweetened Orange Whipped Cream

In a chilled medium bowl combine

 1/2 cup whipping cream
 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
 1/2 teaspoon finely shredded orange peel
 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

 Whisk or beat with an electric mixer on low speed until soft peaks form.
















October 26, 2011

Mac N' Cheese....My Kiss, My Hug, My Comfort!

When sick, or tired, or far from home, everyone seems to yearn for the gastronomic equivalent of a warm sweater, a kiss on the forehead, or a favorite blanket. Macaroni and cheese might mean comfort to you. It certainly does to me.  There's simply nothing more satisfying than a plate of piping hot elbow macaroni held loosely together in a creamy, custard-like cheddar cheese sauce covered with a crusty layer of baked cheese and buttered breadcrumbs. This dish is perfect!




A Maine House Mosaic


Mac and cheese is an incredibly simple dish. The name pretty much sums up the recipe. Elbow macaroni, or some other tube-shaped pasta, layered with cheese and cooked with milk or cream. That's all there is. But the simplicity of the dish is only part of its charm. Macaroni and cheese lovers add all sorts of secret ingredients and guard their recipes like new money.




Estelle's Ultimate Southern Macaroni and Cheese
16 oz box of macaroni
1 stick of butter (softened)
1 13 0z can of evaporated milk
1 block of sharp cheddar cheese (approx. 16oz)
1 block of sharp or mild cheddar cheese (approx. 8 oz)
1 box of Velveeta
1 4oz can of Jalapeno peppers, chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cook the macaroni according to package directions. Cook about 1 minute less than the package directions. While the macaroni is cooking, cut 16 oz block of cheese into small cubes. Slice Velveeta into pieces. Then, take the cooked macaroni, drain but do not rinse. Return the macaroni to pot. Add butter, milk, cheese cube and slices to hot macaroni. Mix well, until butter and Velveeta melt. The mixture will be soupy. The cheese cubes will not melt completely. Add peppers. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour into baking dish.
Cover the top with the remaining cheese (grated, sliced or cut into cubes.)
Bake at 350 degrees F. for 35 minutes. You want the top to brown and the pasta to set.





Estelle's Three Cheese Macaroni n' Cheese
1 box (1 .lb) of Elbows Macaroni
1 8 oz block of Mild Cheddar Cheese
1 8 oz block of Colby Jack Cheese
1 pkg. of Kraft Deluxe Cheese Slices
¼ cup of sour cream
¼ stick of butter
¼ cup of milk
salt and pepper to taste


Boil the macaroni in a pot until done (add 2 tsps of oil to the boiling water, to prevent the macaroni from sticking). Drain macaroni, add butter. Cut up the blocks of cheese, tear the slices and add to macaroni. Add in ¼ cup of milk, sour cream and stir, continue to stir and cook so that the macaroni won’t stick. Remove from stove and place in oven at 350 degrees F. and bake for about 15 minutes.





“A guest at a potluck dinner we attended recently brought a concoction she had prepared with cream of chicken soup. The guests were polite and said, “girl, is this your macaroni and cheese?” They were on their good behavior. Oh, you know that's right. When girlfriend left, the entire God-awful mess, bowl and all, was tossed into the garbage!” Joseph C. Phillips.

October 25, 2011

Apples.....Warm and Spicy!

"She had only to stand in the orchard, to put her hand on a
little crab tree and look up at the apples,
to make you feel the goodness of planting
and tending and harvesting at last."
- Willa Cather


A Maine House Mosaic

The Maine House is celebrating each day this week as the beautiful days of October dwindle. October is my favorite month of the year. I dream of it, I long for it, and I savor it. This month just steals my heart. It is the month for apple baking! Doesn't it just warm your soul to have the cinnamon and nutmeg scents fill your home? We are going to begin our week by preparing two of these wonderful autumn apple desserts or side dishes if you prefer, and incorporate some of our orchard apples we picked on Friday. Happy are our days!


Estelle's Stuffed Baked Apples
6 Granny Smith apples
(or a variation of apple types), stemmed and cored
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup rolled oats
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 cup golden raisins
3 Tbsp. butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Sprinkle the insides of the cored apples with lemon juice. Mix the rest of the ingredients, except for the cider, in a medium-sized bowl. Divide the mixture and fill all six apples equally. Place apples in a 5-qt. oval sauté pan, or any ovenproof baking dish. If there's extra filling, sprinkle around the pan. Pour the cider or apple juice into the bottom of the baking dish and bake uncovered for 35 — 45 minutes, or until the apples are soft. As the apples bake, baste 2-3 times with the pan juices. Serve warm and finish with whipped topping, ice cream and/or caramel sauce.




Estelle's Skillet Apples with Cranberries
6 large apples (Granny Smith or Cortland apples)
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
4 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/2 cup cold water
6 Tbsp. brown sugar, packed
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
Dash of nutmeg
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1 cup granola


Peel and core the apples. Slice into thick slices. To keep slices from turning brown, toss them with lemon juice. In a large saucepan or skillet, melt the butter. Add apple slices and sauté over medium heat—stirring constantly—for about six to ten minutes or until tender and just beginning to change color. Combine cornstarch and water and stir into the apples. Gently stir in brown sugar and spices. Add cranberries. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and simmer for about three to five minutes, stirring a few times. Sprinkle with granola and drizzle with a few tablespoons of melted butter. Serve warm with a dollop of whipped cream.



October 23, 2011

Autumn in The Apple Orchard

The Maine House has had the opportunity to explore our favorite Apple Orchard for the past two years! We have welcomed family and friends in the autumn season since we arrived in Maine two years ago. I suppose we were fortunate to find what we feel is "the best" apple orchard near our little New England Village and put this on our "to do list" during the months of September and October.



A Maine House Mosaic

This year, we visited the orchard on a beautiful sunny day in October. Once you arrive at "Libby and Son U Pick" orchards in Limerick, Maine, you will feel welcomed and excited to begin your apple picking experience. Their 15 acres of orchards, which showcase 15 varieties of apples, are surrounded by beautiful mountains. Libby and Son U-Picks is a family owned and operated farm. This lovely family has been growing fruit in this area since the 1950’s.


Mrs. Mary Libby

Mrs Libby makes her own Blueberry Donuts, Apple Cider Donuts, Kettle Corn and freshly pressed Old-Fashioned Apple Cider. We picked up a few half-gallons of their cider along with a dozen apple cider donuts. Goodness gracious, these were yummy!  What is better comfort on a cool fall afternoon than a hot cup of spiced apple cider? We had a ball picking Cortlands, McIntosh and Golden Delicious apples! Miss Judy had never gotten to experience picking apples so she absolutely loved the afternoon in the orchard. The beautiful sights and smells that can be found in their acreage is simply stunning. What a wonderful, autumn day it was! Thank you Libby and Son....see ya'll next year!




Estelle's Apple Bread Pudding
3 eggs
 1 (14 ounce) can Sweetened Condensed Milk
3 medium all-purpose apples, pared, cored and finely chopped
1 3/4 cups hot water
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups cubed French bread
1/2 cup golden raisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In large bowl, beat eggs; add sweetened condensed milk, apples, water, butter, cinnamon and vanilla. Stir in bread and raisins (optional), moistening completely. Turn into buttered 9-inch square baking pan. Bake 50-55 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool. Serve warm with fresh vanilla whipped cream! Oh, heavenly! You will kiss the cook on this one!








Estelle's Most Requested Autumn Pumpkin Bread with Cream Cheese
1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup applesauce
2/3 cup orange juice
2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1-1/4 tsp. salt
1-1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1-1/2 tsp. ground ginger


Cream Cheese Icing
3 (8-oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
1 stick (4-oz.) margarine, softened
1 (16-oz.) box confectioners' sugar, sifted
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice



Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease the baking dish (or another 9'' x 13'' pan). To prepare the bread, whisk together the pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, applesauce, orange juice, vanilla, and both sugars in a large bowl until well blended. Set aside. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Pour half the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture and stir to combine. Then pour in the rest of the dry ingredients, mixing until just blended. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake for 45 — 55 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool.


For the icing, cream together the cream cheese and margarine in a medium bowl until smooth and free of any lumps. Mix in the vanilla and lemon juice. Add in the confectioner's sugar and whip until light and fluffy. Refrigerate until serving time. Serve each slice of bread with a dollop of icing and a sprinkle of orange zest.



Estelle's Spiced Apple Cider
1 gallon apple cider
Eight 3 inch cinnamon sticks
Four apples with studded cloves
10 whole allspice


In a large saucepan, combine the apple cider, cinnamon sticks, apples and allspice. Simmer the cider for 30 minutes. Serve hot right from the stove, using a ladle to fill cups. Want to be warm and toasty? Try a spiked version by adding 1/2 cup of light rum!



Precious Luke in the Apple Orchard last September







October 22, 2011

Kennebunkport Autumn Morning

The Maine House has been touring the towns of New England for the past few weeks. The autumn season just seems to beckon us to come outside and take in all the beauty that this area offers during October. Miss Judy has been visiting us from Pensacola and I believe it is safe to say she would prefer her vacation continue another week. We have had beautiful sunny, fall like days, as well as rainy, misty cool days, which seem perfect for coming home after a long day of sight seeing and shopping to savor some good ole' comfort food!
Below are some beautiful historic homes in Kennbunkport. There is nothing more charming, more intriguing or more beautiful than these New England historic beauties!









Estelle's has chosen some of the best recipes to add to her menu! Tonight we savor Lidia Matticchio Bastianich's version of Macaroni and Cheese. We are adding a fresh spinach salad and warm toasty french bread! Don't forget a good glass of vino! Believe me, this one is a keeper and you may even want to marry Miss Lydia!!!



Ditalini With Potatoes and Provola
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup chopped bacon, in 1/4-inch pieces
1 onion, chopped
4 cups russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt, plus more for the pasta pot
1 pound ditalini
1 cup seeded and diced fresh tomato
8 ounces smoked provola or mozzarella, in 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano


Put 4 tablespoons of the olive oil and the chopped bacon in the big skillet and set over medium-high heat. Stir and cook for 3 or 4 minutes, to render bacon fat. Stir in the chopped onion, and cook until it is sizzling and wilting, about 3 minutes. Spill in the cubed potatoes, toss well in the fat, then spread them in the pan. Season with the salt, and cook, tossing and turning the potatoes frequently, for another 3 or 4 minutes, until the cubes are lightly crisped all over.


Pour in 4 cups water, stir everything around, and scrape up any crust on the skillet bottom. Bring the water to a gently bubbling boil and cook, stirring frequently, for about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are cooked. The soup (or sauce, depending on your point of view) should reduce so it barely covers the potato cubes.


Meanwhile, bring 6 quarts of salted water to the boil in a pasta pot. After the potatoes have cooked for about 10 minutes, drop the ditalini into the pot and cook al dente. Drain the ditalini, and stir into the thickened potato soup/sauce. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and simmer the pasta e patate together for another 3 minutes or so, to an even denser consistency.


Stir in the diced tomatoes, cook for a minute, and adjust salt to taste. Turn off the heat, scatter the cubed provola all over, and stir into the pasta e patate continuously as it melts into the threads. Finally, stir in the grated cheese. Serve immediately, in warm bowls.





October 15, 2011

The Reading Corner.....Northern Hospitality.....Cooking New England Style!

I am a lover of cookbooks! Most of my vast collection is admittedly Southern! It's not surprising that I have very few "Yankee" cookbooks since I don't very often cook this way. At Estelle's we savor southern, down-home comfort food! This feeds our soul. However, since I grew up on a combination of Northern-Southern dishes, there are certain times of the year that I draw from some of Mother and Grandmother's recipes that were family favorites, such as their New England Boiled Dinner or their Yankee Pot Roast. I came across a very interesting cookbook the other day, entitled Northern Hospitality: Cooking by the Book in New England! It has now been added to my collection and I cannot quite put it down! What an interesting teaching in history and cooking from the area of the country where we now live!




Northern Hospitality: Cooking by the Book in New England

Those who thought New England cuisine consisted of lobster rolls and baked beans will find Northern Hospitality: Cooking by the Book in New England as unexpected and refreshing as a warm breeze off the North Atlantic. . . . Northern Hospitality is . . . filled with information and recipes that will enlighten and enthrall anyone interested in food, cooking, or social history."

I often thought of  traditional New England cooking rather average, like baked beans and clam chowder. This gorgeous cookbook features an enticing anthology of almost 400 historic New England recipes from the seventeenth to the early twentieth century. There are dishes like wine-soaked bass served with oysters and cranberries, roast shoulder of lamb seasoned with sweet herbs, almond cheesecake infused with rosewater, robust Connecticut brown bread, zesty ginger nuts, and high-peaked White Mountain cake.

One review read as: "This is an elegantly written, well conceived, and compelling work . . . a delight to read."

Chapters are grouped into the categories of the liquid one-pot meal, fish, fowl, meat and game, pie, pudding, bread, and cake. The cookbook puts the New England cooking tradition on display in all its unexpected, and delicious complexity.

Here are few of Estelle's favorite New England Recipes!






Estelle's Apple custard pie
1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell
4 medium apples, peeled, cored, and cut into thin wedges
 (enough for two layers)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup heavy cream
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small dice

 Set the oven rack in the middle position. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
 Arrange approximately half of apple slices on bottom of pie crust in an overlapping pattern. Sift together sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Sprinkle half of cinnamon sugar over apples. Pour heavy cream into 2-cup glass measuring cup. Add eggs and vanilla and beat with a fork or small whisk to combine. Pour half of egg mixture over top of pie. Layer remaining apples in pie and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon sugar. Pour remaining cream mixture over top of pie. Dot with butter. Bake 10 minutes, reduce oven temperature to 350°F, and bake 45 minutes more, or until filling bubbles rapidly and edges of crust are nicely browned. Check pie during baking; if crust is browning too quickly, cover loosely with foil. Cool pie on rack at least 2 hours before serving. This pie is best served the day it is baked. Store covered with paper towels and plastic wrap in the refrigerator.





Estelle's Quick and Easy Shepard’s Pie
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup chopped onion
2 large carrots, chopped
1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
3/4 cup Steak & Chop Marinade With Garlic & Cracked Black Pepper
1/4 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed
1 package (24 ounces) prepared mashed potatoes or 2 1/2 cups leftover mashed potatoes, heated

Melt butter in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add onion, carrots and mushrooms; cook and stir 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add ground beef; cook and stir 5 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. Stir in marinade and tomato paste until well blended. Add peas; stir gently.  Spoon mixture into 2-quart casserole. Spread evenly with potatoes. Broil 5 to 6 minutes or until golden brown.