Instructions for Cherry Pie
The pie should be kept frozen until it’s ready to bake.
Preheat oven to 400. Cover still-frozen pie with foil and bake for 40 minutes on the lowest rack of the oven. Take foil off, turn heat down to 350, and put a sheet tray underneath the pie (to prevent pie filling from boiling onto the floor of the oven) and bake for another 40 minutes.
Since every freezer holds a different temperature, and every oven cooks a little differently, it’s important to check the doneness. Filling should be bubbly and molten. If not, put it back in the oven for and check every 5-10 minutes until it is.
Instructions for Cooking Pierogi
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt (like you would for cooking pasta)
- Drop the pierogies into the boiling water. Once the pierogies have risen to the top of the pot, set timer and cook for 4 minutes. Stir occasionally to ensure that they do not stick to the bottom of the pot. Check one to make sure it’s cooked–it may need another minute or two. When the pierogies are cooked, transfer with a slotted spoon to a lightly oiled plate. (You can do this up to 24 hours in advance).
- Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Add about 1 to tablespoon of fat per three pierogies. We use a combination of olive oil and butter at the restaurant. Drop in the pre-boiled pierogies and cook about 2-3 minutes on each side, or until nicely browned.
- Serve with caramelized or fried onions/sour cream/sauerkraut.
Instructions for Heating Meatloaf
Defrost meatloaf for 24 hours in the refrigerator.
- Cover meatloaf with foil and put in a 250 degree oven for 15 minutes.
- Turn up heat to 425 and cook for another 10-15 minutes (or 375 degrees with convection fan), until the outside gets some nice color and it is heated all the way through.
Slice of Meatloaf
- Cut meatloaf into slices.
- Heat slices in toaster oven, in a pan with a little bit of oil or butter, or under the broiler.
Instructions for Heating Quiche
Preheat oven to 375 degrees (350 degrees with convection fan). Place defrosted quiche on a cookie sheet and separate slices to allow some space between each. Heat quiche for 10 minutes, until slightly jiggly and heated through. Quiche is also good at room temperature.
Instructions for Pot Pie
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cover pot pie with foil and bake in the bottom third of the oven for 40 minutes. Take foil off and bake for another 40 minutes, or until the filling shows signs of bubbling and the top crust is thoroughly baked. Let rest for 30 minutes before slicing into it.
For a golden brown crust, brush on some egg wash (best), heavy cream, or milk before baking.
Instructions for Meatballs
Heat up around 3 cups of tomato sauce to a simmer in a pan large enough to hold all the meatballs. Put frozen meatballs straight into the pot. Simmer meatballs around thirty minutes, stirring gently every so often.
Instructions for Stuffed Cabbage
If frozen, defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
You may notice that the sauce separates in the container. This is not a problem. The reason for this is that there isn’t much starch in the recipe to hold it together, so the water separates when it gets cold.
The stuffed cabbage are fully cooked, so it’s just a matter of warming it up. Put cabbage and sauce in a pan and bring to a simmer. Cover and gently cook for 15 minutes or so, until the filling is warm. To test, you can stick a paring knife in the middle and put it to your lip to discern how warm it is.
Instructions for Shaker Dried Corn
1 cup shaker dried corn
2 tsp kosher salt
1 ⅓ cup heavy cream
2 oz butter
Pinch of sugar if necessary
- The day before, put shaker corn in a narrow container and pour 2 cups of boiling water over it. Check in one hour. The corn should be covered by about ½” of water, if not, add more water.
- In a skillet, bring shaker corn, the soaking liquid and kosher salt to a boil over high heat. Continue to cook until most of the water is evaporated, and the pan is almost dry. This takes about 10 minutes.
- Add heavy cream and continue to cook over high heat until it begins to thicken, about 7-10 minutes. Add butter off the heat and stir to melt. Taste for seasoning, adding a pinch or two of sugar or more salt if it needs it.
Instructions for Crispy Duck Leg Confit
Take my instructions with a grain of salt. Most of the duck leg confit I’ve rendered in my lifetime has been on the cooking line in a restaurant, where I had ten other things going on and the advantage of a salamander broiler, so these instructions are kind of a “guesstimate” of what one might do at home. If you’ve never done this before, I highly recommend finding some videos online to watch first. Crisping duck leg confit is not hard, but it can seem daunting and so watching someone else do it and seeing how easy it is might take the edge off. Also you’ll see that there is more than one way to do it.
The easiest way to crisp up duck confit is in a non-stick pan. A well seasoned cast iron pan is the second best way. If those aren’t options, any frying pan will do–it’s just a little more tricky.
First, try to loosen the skin so that as much as possible comes into contact with the pan so that it renders and gets nice and crisp. You can cut a little slit in the skin on the meat-side of the leg along the bone to help “unwrap” the skin so that more can lay flat on the pan.
Add a tablespoon or so of fat to the pan and heat up until warm. (If you’re not using a non-stick pan, then bring the oil to just below the smoke point.) Put the duck leg into the pan skin side down and set heat to low. If your pan edge slopes gently, nestle the duck leg against the edge of the pan, so that as much surface area as possible on the leg comes into contact with the pan. (If you have a straight-sided pan, this won’t work as well.)
Cover the pan and cook for 10-15 minutes or so, covered, basting every so often with the rendering fat. (Don’t fiddle with it too much, especially if you’re not using a non stick pan.) You may need to pour off fat every so often while it’s cooking, which you should save to cook potatoes in. When the skin is crispy and gold brown and the meat cooked through–it is done!