Ugly Peach Pie

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Start to finish: 1 hour 45 minutes
Makes: One pie

Traditional crust instructions
Ingredients
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) cold, unsalted butter, cut into cubes
¼ cup ice water

Method
Pulse together flour, salt and sugar in a food processor. Add cold butter and pulse until a coarse meal is formed. Drizzle in 1 tablespoon of water at a time until a lumpy dough begins to come together. Be sure to not add too much water, as the ideal dough isn’t sticky.   

If you don’t own a food processor, whisk together flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Using a fork, pastry cutter or your fingers, combine the butter until a coarse meal is formed — about the size of small peas. Use a spatula to slowly add in water.

Turn half of the dough onto a floured surface and shape into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Repeat with other half.

Unwrap dough on a floured surface. Flour hands and rolling pin. Roll out dough into a circle, about ¼-inch thick, large enough to fit over the pie pan.

Place dough and lightly press into pan. Trim or crimp edges and bake based on full recipe instructions.

Make it savory by removing the sugar, cutting down the butter to ¾ cup and adding in ½ cup whole milk ricotta cheese.

Filling instructions
Ingredients
2 pounds fresh peaches, about 5–6 cups once peeled and sliced
½ cup sour cream
½ cup dark brown sugar

Method
Using a paring knife, remove skin on peaches and slice in half, being careful while removing the pit. Discard pit and slice into ½-inch wedges.

Add peach slices to large bowl with sour cream and brown sugar. Use a wooden spoon to toss until fully combined.

Pour into prepared pie crust. 

Streusel topping instructions
Ingredients

½ cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup quick oats
½ cup flour
1 teaspoon salt 

Method
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients with a fork or your hands until crumbled and butter is the size of small peas.

Ugly Peach Pie assembly instructions
Heat oven to 350 F.

Prepare half of a traditional crust recipe, roll and press into a pie pan.

Prepare peach filling and pour into pie pan.

Prepare streusel topping and generously top pie from edge to edge.

Bake 45–50 minutes or until golden brown and peach filling is bubbling. 

Cool, slice and serve.

House Dip

Start to finish: 35 minutes
Makes: 3 cups

Ingredients
10 ounces chopped, frozen spinach
1 pound white cheddar cheese, cubed
8-ounce block cream cheese
½ cup sour cream
15-ounce can chopped tomatoes, drained


Method
Thaw spinach to package instructions in a colander lined with a thin towel. Once thawed, use towel to squeeze moisture out of spinach. Set aside.

In a heavy-bottomed pot over medium-low heat, combine all ingredients. Stir every few minutes until smooth and fully melted, about 25 minutes.

Slow cooker: Follow instructions as listed above, except using a slow cooker on the high setting. Stir every 20 minutes until smooth and fully melted, about 1.5 hours. Serve on warm setting.

Chicken and Spinach Enchiladas

Start to finish: 45 minutes
Impresses: 6

Ingredients
1     cup onion, chopped
½    cup green bell pepper, chopped
5    tablespoons butter
3    cups baby spinach
2    cups chopped cooked chicken
1     4-ounce can chopped green chiles (or roasted anaheims/hatch chiles)
¼    cup all-purpose flour
1     teaspoon ground coriander seed
¾    teaspoon salt
2½    cups chicken broth
1     cup sour cream
1½    cups shredded Monterey jack cheese (or more)
12    6-inch tortillas

Method
Heat oven to 350 degrees. 

In large saucepan, cook onion and green pepper in 2 tablespoons butter until tender. Combine in a bowl with spinach, chopped chicken and green chiles. Set aside.

In the same saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons butter. Whisk in flour, coriander and salt. Stir in chicken broth. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in sour cream and ½ cup of cheese. 

Stir ½ cup of the sauce into the chicken mixture.  Dip each tortilla into remaining hot sauce to soften and fill each with about ¼ cup of the chicken mixture and roll up. 

Arrange rolls in a 13-by-9-inch baking dish and pour remaining sauce over. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake, uncovered, for about 25 minutes or until the top begins to brown.

Slow Cooker Carnitas Tacos

Start to finish: 11 hours
Impresses: 8–10

Ingredients

For the carnitas:
1    tablespoon cumin
1    tablespoon paprika
1    teaspoon salt
1    teaspoon pepper
1    4–5 lb. pork shoulder/butt
1    white onion
6    garlic cloves
2    oranges
2    limes
2    bay leaves
1    10-ounce can whole green chiles

For the chipotle crema:
2    cups sour cream
2    chipotles in adobo with sauce

For serving:
    corn tortillas
    cilantro, chopped
    white onion, chopped
    lime wedges

Method
In a small bowl, combine cumin, paprika, salt and pepper.

Dry pork shoulder with a paper towel and then rub spice mix all over. Place pork into a slow cooker. Cut onion in half and smash each garlic clove. Place into slow cooker with skin on.

Add in the juice of the oranges and limes, bay leaves and can of green chiles
with juice. 

Set slow cooker on low for 10 hours.

In a blender, pulse together sour cream and chipotles until fully blended. Store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve. 

Pork is finished once it’s tender and easily pulls apart. Heat oven broiler and line a baking sheet with several layers of foil. 

Using two forks, pull pork until shredded, discarding the fatty parts. Place pork on the baking sheet and ladle 1–2 cups of the cooking liquid atop the pulled pork and toss to coat. Broil for 10–15 minutes, stirring twice.

To serve, place pork inside warm corn tortillas, top with cilantro, onion, a squeeze of lime juice and drizzle of chipotle crema.

Potato Soup

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Ingredients
6 strips bacon
1 head broccoli
1 tablespoon butter
3 carrots
3 stalks celery
1 small onion
6 potatoes
8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
1 carton (4 cups) chicken broth
½ cup heavy cream
1½ cups milk
1 8-ounce container sour cream
salt and pepper 

Method
Chop the broccoli, carrots, celery, onion and potatoes into small bite-sized pieces (taking care to separate the broccoli florets from the diced stock). Cut the bacon into small strips as well.

After the prep-work is done, fry the bacon strips in a large pot over medium-high heat. Once they’re fully cooked, remove the bacon from the pot and reserve the bacon pieces to top your soup. Remove all but approximately 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease from the pot and discard. Add the broccoli stocks, carrots, celery and onion to the pot and cook on medium-high for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the potatoes, broccoli florets and butter to the pot and continue to cook and stir the vegetables for 3–4 more minutes. Add the chicken broth and a dash of salt and pepper, and allow the pot to come to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 15–20 minutes, until the potatoes are fully cooked. 

Scoop approximately 2/3 of the soup into a bowl and purée using a submersion blender (a food processor or blender work too, so long as you’re cautious while blending — hot liquid expands, and can be a little unpredictable when mixed). This can be done all at once, or in shifts, whatever you feel most comfortable with. Add the puréed mixture back into the pot, and pour in the milk, cream and 4 ounces of the shredded cheddar. Increase the heat to medium-high and stir continuously until all the cheese is melted.

Dish the soup into bowls and garnish with a dollop of sour cream, remaining shredded cheddar cheese and a sprinkle of the reserved bacon.

Cowboy Lasagna

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Recipe courtesy of Miranda Rice

Start to finish: 1 hour and 5 minutes
Impresses: 10

Ingredients
1 pound ground beef, cooked and drained
1 24-ounce jar spaghetti or marinara sauce
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
¼ cup sour cream
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 stick butter
1 16-ounce package lasagna noodles, cooked al dente and drained
cheddar cheese, grated

Method
Preheat oven to 350 F.

Combine cream cheese, sour cream and ricotta cheese until blended. 

Combine meat and spaghetti sauce.

Place a few thin slices of butter in the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish. 

Place ½ of the lasagna noodles on top of the butter. 

Pour ½ of the cheese mixture on top of the noodles and spread well. 

Repeat last three steps and layer remaining noodles, cheese and meat. 

Top with grated cheddar cheese. 

Bake for 30 minutes.