Tag Archives: beer

Steak and Guinness Pie

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about locally grown food lately — not unusual for me by any means,  but my thoughts have just been more intensely focused.  So it shouldn’t be unusual for an article like “Butchers’ Banquet:  England’s Lincolnshire Wolds” published in the October 2011 issue of Saveur to have an impact on me.  I’m always looking for truly good recipes for traditional food, and even though I’m not British, I have solid connections.   In 1881 at the age of three, my great-grandfather sailed with his family from Newport, Wales to San Francisco hoping to find inexpensive land where his family might grow apples.  But that’s a story for another day.

This is more about the group of men mentioned in the article who have gotten together over years and years to enjoy a Sunday meal each week.  They know where the food has been grown, how it’s been grown, and have prepared it to showcase its quality.  Of course, it helps that they’re in the business.  I’d like to be invited to a table like that to hear the talk and understand more about what they know.  I’ll work on that from here in San Diego and maybe, just maybe, by the end of this year, I’ll know more about the more than 6,000 farms in our county and the farmers who tend them.

In the meantime, I thought I’d share these great Steak & Guinness pies with you.  My father-in-law loves Stilton and will jump at any excuse to tuck his napkin into his shirt and cozy up to a plate of hot food like this with a pint.  The recipe isn’t challenging, but does take some time, so plan ahead.  It’s worth it.

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Clams with Linguica and Beer

 

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It’s Friday, and for us that means that dinner is never a serious issue. Good thing, too, since no one has any energy, right?  It means no fuss or muss, but flavor isn’t something to sacrifice.  Take out doesn’t count on that front, ever, since the whole point of take out for us is flavor with zero fuss or muss.

But clams and take out don’t exactly mix– at least not around here.  And ironically, even though we have the Chesapeake Fish Co. harvesting and processing excellent sea food here in San Diego, the retail clams I purchase most often are shipped from the East Coast.  So much for being a locovore.  The tag on the bag I brought home stated that the clams were harvested one day, shipped the next, and they ended up in my kitchen a day and a half later.

Our passion for clams started with this recipe which I saw in the May 2002 issue of Bon Appetit.  It was featured in an article on Capri and the lemons that grow in that region of Italy, and I had to try it.  Since then, not only have I altered that recipe again and again, but I’ve tried a number of others like this Spanish version which may be our favorite.

Recently, I decided to experiment with a different recipe — one that included linguica —  a type of Portuguese sausage which is firm, and more similar to Spanish chorizo than regular sausage.  In the case of this latest recipe, the liguica came first, and not the recipe.  That’s how it usually works.  I see an ingredient while I’m shopping and put it in my basket knowing I’ll come up with something, so it’s been sitting patiently in my fridge, waiting for me to figure it out — tempting me each time I open the cheese drawer and making me think, “Jeez! I forgot I had that!  What’s the expiration date????”

My latest clam “something” began with an Italian idea influenced by a Spanish recipe, and was supposed to have a New England spin, but the English beer and Portuguese sausage sort of changed everything.

I’ll leave it as “Clams with Linguica and Beer.”  There’s nothing fancy about this one, but it’s perfect for a Friday night at home.  Don’t forget the crusty bread.  You’ll need it to soak up the broth.  Mmmm…

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