This Feb. 2, 2015 photo shows mashed potatoes flecked with scallions and topped with butter in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

The dish is a relative of the better known colcannon, and both dishes — served as sides to a variety of meat dishes — date back at least several hundred years. But while colcannon adds kale — or sometimes cabbage — to the mashed potatoes, champ uses scallions or leeks

This Jan. 26, 2015 photo shows fusilli with Italian sausage, peas and creamy tomato sauce in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

The beauty of a pasta dish is that it rarely takes longer to throw together than the time it takes to boil the water and cook the pasta. And a hearty pasta dish is just the thing to warm up a cold and wintry night.

This Jan. 19, 2015 photo shows vegetable tagine in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

Sweet cinnamon, warm ground ginger and a little peppery turmeric combine to form a perfume that transports you to the spice markets of Morocco. Sprinkle over some softly caramelized onions and garlic, add some tomatoes, briny olives and sweet currants, and the gray skies above you will give way to swaying date palms and sienna-tinted dunes.

This Jan. 26, 2015 photo shows rotini with creamy burger sauce in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead

To make my point, here is a simple and delicious weeknight-friendly pasta dinner that uses a bit of heavy cream to make the dish taste like you spent way longer on it. If you’d prefer a vegetarian version, just leave out the ground beef. And, of course, this dish is plenty versatile. Add veggies as you see fit, or substitute ground pork or chicken for the beef.

This Jan. 26, 2015 photo shows steak au poivre in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

If you’ve never made a pan sauce, this recipe for steak au poivre is a great way to get started. A French classic, steak au poivre is steak that is crusted with cracked peppercorns, then seared and served with a quick pan sauce. Not a fan of peppercorns? Just leave them off; the dish will still be delicious.


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