Friday, October 22, 2010

lunch dish

photo via 3191 miles apart
i began a quest this week fueled by the desire to make more accessible lunches and expand the options from sandwiches, combined with a new empanada fixation from work and this quick lunch option here, topped off with a desire to make nigella lawson's lunch dish for some time. culminated in a delicious savory lunch turnover that i want to share for many reasons. not only because its amazing but because this is the third pie crust i've made in the past two weeks and its my favorite,i can imagine it with most anything, its perfectly flaky and it has cream cheese in it,yum, and you have no need for ice water or cold butter or any of the other persnickity crust issues that force you to the store to buy it in a box.

Cream Cheese Pastry
8 tablespoons (1 stick unsalted butter) at room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
1/4 cup half and half
1-1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

*i would double this next time because i only made four turnovers and had extra filling. and i would suggest throwing some grated cheddar in it and seeing what happens i think it would be an extra kick that would put this dish over the edge.

Mix butter, cream cheese and cream to thoroughly combine. Add flour and salt and mix until combined and a ball forms. Divide the dough into two disks and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before rolling out.

lunch dish
2-3 (about 12 oz) tomatoes, or same amount of drained, chopped or canned ones
2 small onions
2 eggs hard boiled
4 ounces pitted black olives
2 tablespoons olive oil, not extra virgin
9 ounces ground beef
fat pinch all spice, (i used cinnamon and nutmeg, probably a bit too much cinnamon but it was still varied)
salt and pepper
{i'm thinking about adding a few chopped red bell pepper and maybe some ground chipotle pepper because it was a bit too even keeled for us around here }
serves 6
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Cut an x in the bottom of your tomatoes, place in a bowl and cover with boiling water from the kettle and leave for 5 min. drain, run under the cold tap and the skin comes right off,thanks smitten kitchen, cut into quarters and remove seeds and chop roughly. peel and chop the onions, hard boiled egg and olives too.

in a large frying pan over medium heat, warm the oil. cook the chopped onions until softened and beginning to color, turning the flame down to low if they look as if they're sticking. turn the heat back to medium and add the chopped tomatoes and cook, stirring a minute or so before adding the beef. stir well, breaking up the clumps of meat with wodden spoon as you go, then, when the meat's browned, stir in the chopped eggs and olives and season with the allspice salt and pepper. cook over gentle heat for about 20 minutes, stirring.

remove pastry from fridge and roll out thinly. cut into 5 inch diamater circles. i used the top of a bowl for a guide. place filling in center and fold over pinching into a half circle, turnover shape. place on baking sheet and cook for 25-30 minutes.

wrap and freeze for a quick lunch on the go or we enjoyed them with roasted potatoes last night.

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