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Tuesday 15th March 2022.

March 15, 2022


It is a pleasure in the eight o’clock hour this morning to have on the line from Paris photographer Gregory Herpe. Gregory has an exhibition the the Alianza Francesa called From Paname to Panama. It opened yesterday and will run until the 8th of April. Also on the line with us is Florian Davrou from Alianza Francesa to talk about some of the other events happening through the rest of the Francophile month.

Feisty Foodie Sara

In the last hour, well it is Tuesday so we check in with Feisty Foodie Sara…. ” This week we have both Purim and St. Patrick’s Day…so we’ll do a little from each!  Don’t get intimidated by the quantity of ingredients, they aren’t as complicated as you think!  First we’ll start off with some Hamentaschen with Poppyseed Filling.  This traditional cookie for Purim is fun to make with the kids!  We had a great time doing it!  There are lots of fillings you can try, if you’re not into poppy seeds.   With St. Paddy’s Day this Thursday, we’re going to make a delicious Irish Shephard’s Pie!  This perfect homey meal includes your main and side dish in one! So we all know green cocktails are classic on St. Paddy’s Day, so if you want to add a little green food colouring to your favourite beer or clear cocktail.  Instead, we’re going to make Irish Coffee with a little green topping!  You can even add a touch of peppermint extract or crème de menth to your whipped cream for a slight mint flavour!

Irish Shephard’s Pie


Garlicky Potato Topping:

4 large russet potatoes, peeled and quartered

4 whole garlic cloves, peeled

1/2 cup sour cream

1/4 to 1/2 cup beef broth

4 tablespoons butter, softened

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Nonstick cooking spray


4 slices bacon, cut into thin strips

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 medium onions, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt, plus 1/2 teaspoon

1 teaspoon sugar

1 pound ground beef (or half ground beef, half pork or veal)

2 medium carrots, roughly chopped, (about 1 cup)

3/4 cups frozen peas, thawed

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 (12-ounce) bottle light or dark beer

1/2 cup beef broth

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup grated Swiss or Cheddar

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves


Prepare potato topping: In a large saucepan add the potatoes and garlic and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook, uncovered, until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain. Transfer the potatoes and garlic to a large bowl. Add the sour cream, 1/4 cup of the broth, butter, salt and pepper, and beat on low speed with a hand mixer until the potatoes are light and fluffy, about 1 to 2 minutes. If the mixture is too dry, add the remaining 1/4 cup broth. Do not overmix. Cover and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10-inch round baking dish with nonstick spray.

Prepare filling: Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally until browned and almost crisp, about 7 to 8 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate; set aside.

Add the oil to the drippings in the skillet and put over medium heat. Add the onions and 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are very soft and just beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle in the sugar, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to caramelize, about 3 minutes. Stir in the beef and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-high heat, until the beef begins to brown, about 7 minutes. Add the carrots, peas, and garlic and cook, stirring, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and flour and cook, stirring, until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add the beer, bring to a boil and boil for 3 minutes. Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, and scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan, about 2 minutes Add the cooked bacon, the broth, rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and the pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the sauce thickens, about 15 minutes.

Spoon the meat mixture into the prepared baking dish. Spread the potato topping evenly over the beef mixture. Bake until the filling is hot, the topping is lightly browned and the edges are bubbly, about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the cheese. Return to the oven and bake for 10 more minutes. Let rest out of the oven for 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Hamantaschen with Poppy Seed Filling



3½ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ cup almonds, finely ground

9 ounces butter, sofened

1 cup confectioner’s sugar

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp orange zest (optional)

2 eggs

Pinch salt

Poppy Seed Filling

300 grams ground poppy seeds (approx. 2⅓ cups)

1 cup granulated sugar

 1½ cups milk or orange juice

3 tablespoons honey

Lemon zest (optional)


  1. Sift flour and almonds.
  2. Beat butter with confectioner’s sugar and granulated sugar.
  3. Add eggs, vanilla and orange zest (if using) to the butter and cream until well mixed,
  4. Add the sifted flour and almonds, baking powder, and salt to the butter. Mix until dough is formed.
  5. Begin to knead dough with hands till a smooth dough ball forms. Try not to overwork the dough, only knead till the dough is the right consistency. If the crumbles are too dry to form a smooth dough, add water slowly, 1 teaspoon at a time, using your hands to knead the liquid into the dough. Knead and add liquid until the dough is smooth and slightly tacky to the touch (not sticky), with a consistency that is right for rolling out. It can easily go from the right consistency to too wet/sticky, so add water very slowly. If the dough seems too wet, knead in a little flour till it reaches the right texture. Form the dough into a flat disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator to chill for 3 hours to overnight.
  6. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, cook milk, sugar, and poppy seeds for 15 minutes.
  7. Add the honey and lemon zest and cook 5 minutes more. Let cool.
  8. Add a Little flour to your Surface and roll out the dough to ¼ inch thickness and create 3 inch circles using a cookie cutter or glass.
  9. Put a teaspoon of filling in the middle of each circle. Fold up dough into a triangle and pinch the edges.
  10. 11. Bake about 10 minutes in 375℉(190°C) oven until golden.

Note: Other filling options include Nutella, strawberry or apricot jam or cherry pie filling.

How to fold a hamantaschen

First, grasp the left side of the circle and fold it towards the center to make a flap that covers the left third of the circle.

Grasp the right side of the circle and fold it towards the center, overlapping the upper part of the left side flap to create a triangular tip at the top of the circle. A small triangle of filling should still be visible in the center.

Grasp the bottom part of the circle and fold it upward to create a third flap and complete the triangle. When you fold this flap up, be sure to tuck the left side of this new flap underneath the left side of the triangle, while letting the right side of this new flap overlap the right side of the triangle. This way, each side of your triangle has a corner that folds over and a corner that folds under– it creates a “pinwheel” effect. This method if folding is not only pretty– it will help to keep the cookies from opening while they bake.

Pinch each corner of the triangle gently but firmly to secure the shape. If any cracks have formed at the places where the dough is creased, use the warmth of your fingers to smooth them out.

Repeat this process for the remaining circles.

Irish Coffee


1/3 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons light brown sugar

1/4 cup whiskey, preferably Irish

2 cups hot freshly brewed coffee


Whip the cream and brown sugar in a medium bowl with a whisk until soft peaks form.

Divide the whiskey between 2 mugs and top with the hot coffee. Spoon the whipped cream over top and serve hot.

TIP:  Add a couple drops of Green food colouring to the whipped cream for a festive touch!


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