Irish Lamb Stew

Irish Lamb Stew

I got this recipe in the New York Daily News a while back. They published it a few days before Saint Patrick’s Day and I’ve always wondered how authentic it really is with olive oil, tomato paste and red wine as ingredients. Authentic or not it’s a tasty hearty stew.

Season room temperature lamb with salt and black pepper and coat with flour. Sear until browned and remove from pot. Add more oil and sweat onions, garlic and carrots – S&P.

Make a hot spot and caramelize tomato paste then mix. Add barley, stirring constantly for 5 minutes. Deglaze pot with wine.

Return lamb, stocks and bouquet garni (3 sprigs each rosemary and thyme wrapped around 3 bay leaves.)

Simmer low for 45 minutes, covered. Check for seasoning. Remove bouquet garni and add potatoes and pearl onions and cook for another 30 minutes or until potatoes are done.

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The Publick House on Sturbridge Common

The Publick House on Sturbridge Common

The Publick House on the Sturbridge Common in Massachusetts opened in 1771. George Washington, Ben Franklyn and General Lafayette all stayed there. Over the years, buildings were added increasing he number of guest rooms to 116 today. It has two very good restaurants – The Tap Room and Ebenezer’s Tavern – with traditional New England dishes served in both.

Ebenezer’s Tavern – great bartenders and a good selection of beer on tap.

The Bake Shoppe – everything from complimentary pecan rolls, muffins and cornbread for breakfast to elaborate wedding cakes.

The Tap Room – where a full breakfast is served.

Our room – cozy!

At the bar in Ebenezer’s Tavern  – Lobster Pie and Yankee Pot Roast

A perfectly roasted New England duck

For lunch – a simple BLT done just right

Sunday Papers

The Publick House on Sturbridge Common – Menus

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Jacques Pepin’s Rabbit with Mushrooms

Jacques Pepin’s Rabbit with Mushrooms10

Jacques Pepin has a cooking show on Public Television. He makes some elaborate dishes and presents them in a simple, and easy to understand way. So here’s Jacques Pepin’s Rabbit with Mushrooms.


Start by cutting the rabbit (if your butcher didn’t do it for you). Remove the hind legs, separate and cut in two. Remove both shoulders together with the  front legs. Separate the ribcage and cut in two. Remove the flanks and cut the saddle into two or three pieces . Save the liver and kidneys to add toward the end of cooking.20161114_143138
doc3Heat the olive oil in a pan large enough to hold all of the rabbit in one layer. Add the pancetta. When it starts to brown, add the rabbit pieces. Remove the rabbit when it’s browned. 3
Add the onions and garlic to the pan and cook for a few minutes. Add the mushrooms and sprinkle the flour over everything, stir and cook for a few minutes. Add the wine and water and bring to a boil. Add the bouquet garni and return the rabbit to the pan. Simmer on low for 60 minutes.4
Add the liver and kidneys (if you want) and the cream. Cook for 5 minutes.5
Place in a serving dish and garnish with chives. Rabbit with mushrooms is good served with noodles or spätzle.7

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J and E’s Yankee Diner

J and E’s Yankee Diner

As we were driving through Massachusetts recently, I glanced to the side of the road and when I saw it, couldn’t resist stopping at the Yankee Diner. It looked like a classic and it was. The staff were friendly and professional and the food was cheap and good.


It’s located at 16 Worcester Rd,  Charlton, MA. Their hours are 6 am to 2 pm, Saturday to Thursday. They stay open until 8pm on Friday night when they make a dinner special and it’s BYOB. When we passed through the special was prime ribs.

J & E’s Yankee Diner Menu and Facebook Page


Not very big but it’s a classic.


Bacon, eggs, pancakes, home fries, etc.


Traditional diner dishes – chicken salad on toast and hash & eggs plus good coffee.

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