Sorry....only one Jack O' Lantern this year. I ran out of time. Plus, I tend to bogart my pumpkins. I'm hanging on to them for Thanksgiving!
I always cut the bottoms out rather than the tops.
A quicky Jack!
And now for bat stew:
I use a heavy pot.
And a pound of bacon.
Freshly ground pepper and good sea salt.
I put a little extra virgin olive oil in the pot.
And I use 5 pounds of chuck.
Over medium heat, I saute' the bacon which I have cut into small pieces.
I cube all the meat into 3/4 inch cubes.
This takes some time but you really have to brown each piece on each side to seal in the flavor.
I keep a bowl next to the pot and add the browned beef as I go along. Sprinkle each batch with the salt and pepper.
Cut a whole bag of carrots into 3/4 inch pieces.
This is looking good.
Soak a bunch of dried mushrooms. Save the mushroom water.
When they are rehydrated, chop them and add them to about a pound of fresh sliced mushrooms.
In advance I boiled and pealed pearl onions and chopped two medium white onions. All of this gets added to the oil left in the pan.
Saute' this until the onions are translucent.
Add 1/4 cup of cognac.
And stand back and light it and let the alcohol burn off.
Then add the beef and the bacon back to the pan.
Add one bottle of Pinot Noir and about 3 cups of beef stock.
And one container of demi glace and 6 tablespoons of tomato paste.
Stir this all together.
Strain the mushroom water through a sieve and add it to the pot.
Then put it in a 250 degree oven for 3 hours.
Mix 3 tablespoons of flour into 3 tablespoons of soft butter and stir this into the pot until the liquid begins to thicken.
There you go...bat stew! Or beef bourguignon.
I bought these totally cool bowls in Carmel, Ca. years ago.
They are a plate and a bowl together and they have a little handle on the side.
They are great for entertaining because you can place your spoon on the plate and hold on to the handle with just one hand. When you are having a party that is not a sit down dinner, you can eat while you are walking around.
For presentation, I take the mashed potatoes I made earlier....
...and the stew with the heat rising from it....
....and ladle the stew over the potatoes.
And now the spiderweb rolls.
Spray a cast iron skillet generously with cooking spray.
I did something I have never done before. Well, two things actually. I totally followed a recipe and I used frozen dinner rolls. I may never do either again.
The author of this recipe insisted on using frozen rolls so I gave it a try.
The frozen rolls are placed in the cast iron skillets, covered with towels and left to rise for at least 3 hours.
Then you generously spread melted butter over the tops very gently so you don't deflate the little buggers.
Once they are heavily coated....
....you sprinkle them with chopped fresh rosemary.
Then you sprinkle cracked sea salt all over them. (forgot to photograph that step!)
Bake them in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes.
Then spread more melted butter on them.
Here they are. I would prefer making the dough from scratch and will do that the next time.
They were totally gobbled though and everyone loved them. So, if you aren't a stickler for 'from scratch' things, make these. Very, very easy recipe!
Thought you might want a peak at the cupcakes we had for dessert. Click for a closer look.
They were gobbled too!
I hope you all enjoyed your beast feast as much as we enjoyed ours.