Root Beer Glazed Pork Chops with Fresh Apple Salsa

Root Beer Glazed Pork Chops with Fresh Apple Salsa

I’m getting Fall fever, even if it is still 90 degrees here in Florida. I drank my first pumpkin beer this week, I’m going to get my fall decorations out this weekend and I made my first seasonal dinner.  You can never go wrong with the combination of pork and apples so when I saw a recipe in my Tupelo Honey Cafe Cookbook for Root Beer Pork Chops with Apple Salsa I knew I had to try it. I loved the idea but made some changes to the recipes to fit my tastes.

Root Beer Glazed Pork Chops with Fresh Apple Salsa

4 Boneless Pork Loin Chops

1/4 c molasses

6 oz root beer

1 T oil

Combine Root Beer and Molasses in a ziplock bag or shallow dish add pork chops and refrigerate 4 hrs-overnight, turning occasionally. Heat oil in a large skillet over med high heat and add pork chops. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until seared with some dark brown coloring. Turn chops and repeat on the other side. Add remaining root beer mixture to pan  with chops and bring to a boil. reduce heat to low and cover, cook for 4 more minutes or until desired doneness. ( use a meat thermometer if desired)

Root Beer Glazed Pork Chops

Fresh Apple Salsa

2 large crisp apples, (I used Fiji, Granny Smiths would be good also)

1/2 c chopped onion

1/4-1/2 t minced jalapeño pepper

1 T lemon juice

2 T honey

1/4 t salt

1 T chopped fresh parsley

add all ingredients to a bowl and stir, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. This makes more than needed for the pork chops, use the leftovers for wraps, chicken salad, or peanut butter would be great, or also as an accompaniment with a cheese plate or with cinnamon sugar pita chips.

Fresh Apple Salsa great on top of pork or chicken

Root Beer Glazed Pork Chops with Fresh Apple Salsa

Pinspired : Whole Foods Steak and Corn Kabobs with Arugula and Parsley Pesto

Pinspired : Whole Foods Steak and Corn Kabobs with Arugula and Parsley Pesto

This is another recipe that I found while combing Pinterest, it is from Whole Foods and I loved the simplicity of it. It is a great Summertime recipe because it is great on the grill and uses Sweet Summer corn. I only tweaked this recipe slightly using ingredients I had on hand. The original recipe can be found here or on my Pinterest board “To Try”.

Whole Foods Steak and Corn Kabobs with Arugula and Parsley Pesto

1 1/2 Top Sirloin Steak

1 T Montreal steak seasoning (optional)

1 lb small yukon gold potatoes

3 ears of fresh corn cut into 1 1/2 inch rounds

1 c arugula

1/2 c fresh parsley

1/4 c  light olive oil

1 t Worchestershire sauce

1 t dijon mustard

1 clove garlic

1/2 t white or champagne vinegar

Place potatoes in salted water and bring to a boil, simmer for ten minute or until they are tender, but not falling apart. remove potatoes from water and add sliced corn, bring water back to a boil and cook corn for 2 minutes. Remove corn and let cool.

In a food processor or blender combine arugula, parsley, oil. Worchestershire, mustard, garlic and vinegar. puree until it is the consistency of pesto. set aside.

Cut Steak into 1 1/2 ” cubes and sprinkle with steak seasoning. Thread skewers, (if using wooden ones soak in water for 1/2 hour prior to threading), alternating steak, potatoes and corn.

Whole Foods Steak and Corn Kabobs with Arugula and Parsley Pesto

Pre heat a grill to med high, then place the kabobs on the grill for 6 minutes, rotating them so that all side are cooked, these will be med-med-rare, cook longer if desired.

Remove from grill, drizzle with pesto. I served mine with a simple salad and rice.

Whole Foods Steak and Corn Kabobs with Arugula and Parsley Pesto

Mexican Corn Salad

Mexican Corn Salad

A smokey, sweet, fresh and zesty side to go with steaks or grilled chicken.

Mexican Corn Salad

5 ears of fresh corn on the cob,husks and silk removed

1 T olive oil

1/4 c crema ( a mexican sour cream found in the dairy section) or 3 T sour cream and 1 T mayo

1/4 t smoked paprika

zest of 1 lime

juice of 1 lime

1/2 cup crumbled Queso Fresco ( mexican crumbling cheese) you could substitute Parmesan or Feta but use less as they are stronger cheeses

1 T chopped parsley or cilantro

salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 Drizzle olive oil over corn and rub in ensuring all sides are coated. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. roast for about 20 minutes or until corn starts to char.

IMG_8771

Let corn cool so you are able to handle it and remove niblets from cob with a sharp knife. Mix together with remaining ingredients, season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

* you could grill the corn as well, that was my intention before it started pouring down rain.

Greek Chicken with Tomatoes and Feta with Lemon Orzo

Greek Chicken with Tomatoes and Feta

This is a pretty simple dish but it has a lot of flavor. I use a pre made greek dressing for my marinade but you could easily make your own. I also served it with a simple salad of romaine and pickled beets.

Greek Chicken with Tomatoes and Feta

3-4 chicken breasts

1/4 c greek vinaigrette or salad dressing ( I used a local favorite called Farmer Boy Greek Dressing)

3 small ripe tomatoes chopped

1/3 c feta cheese chopped

1 T fresh oregano chopped  ( or 1/2 t dried)

salt and pepper to taste

Add chicken breasts to a large ziplock bag and add dressing. Mix to coat chicken and place in the refrigerator 2-12 hours. Pre heat oven to 350.

Add chicken to a baking dish and cook for 30-40 minutes or until chicken is done and no longer pink. Add chopped tomato, feta, oregano and salt and pepper to the top of chicken and bake 10 more minutes.

Greek Chicken with Tomatoes and Feta

Lemon and Feta Orzo

12 oz  orzo cooked according to package directions and drained.

1 T lemon juice

1/4 t lemon zest

2 T feta cheese

1 T chopped fresh parsley

2 t olive oil

Toss all ingredients together in a bowl add salt and pepper to taste.

Lemon Feta Orzo

Cool as a Cucumber Pasta Salad

Cool as a Cucumber Pasta Salad

Cool off this Summer with this refreshing, easy and tasty pasta salad.

Cool as a Cucumber Pasta Salad

8 oz pasta cooked, drained and rinsed

2 cucumbers peeled, quartered and cut into 1 ” pieces

1 T chopped fresh mint

1 T chopped fresh parsley

1 T chopped ginger ( I used the refrigerated pre-minced found in the produce section of my supermarket)

1/2 c sour cream

3 T rice wine vinegar

salt and pepper to taste.

Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl and stir to incorperate. Chill and serve.

 

Cool as a Cucumber Pasta Salad

Lebanese Please: My New Favorite Food

Lebanese Please:Herb Tossed Salad with Lemon Coriander Dressing and Fried Potatoes with Lemon, Red Pepper and Cilantro

 

On a recent trip to London I was amazed by all the great food. It is not just the land of Fish and Chips and Bangers and Mash. They are utilizing fresh, local, and seasonal ingredients creatively. Also there are many ethnic restaurants that span the globe. I was intrigued by the amount of Lebanese restaurants we found around Kensington. So being the foodie I am we had to try one. After reading about the 5 freshly squeezed lemonades on the menu I was hooked and had to try Comptoir Libanais. I think it might have even been a chain restaurant but it still was delicious. My friend and I shared a Falafel Wrap and Salad, Baba Ghanouj, and a dish called Lebanese Fries. I also had the fresh squeezed Apple, Ginger, and Mint Lemonade. (It is the glass full of green stuff) It was all delicious and so fresh and tasty. The potatoes and the salad were my favorite, though the pickled turnip on the falafel wrap was pretty darn good too. So I came back inspired and wanted my husband to be able to get a hint at the taste and feel of the food.

Comptoir Libanais in South Kensington

I gave it a try and even if it was totally wrong it had the same fresh feel with the emphasis on fresh herbs and citrus which is what I was looking for. Perfect for Summer, I will be making these again and again.

Lebanese Style Fried Potatoes with Lemon, Red Pepper and Cilantro

4-5 cups diced potatoes, I used Yukon Gold

1/2 stick butter

1 lemon juiced

1 t red pepper flakes

2 T fresh cilantro chopped

1 t salt

Melt butter in a large pan over med high heat. Add potatoes and cover and cook for 15 minutes. Uncover and stir and cook 15 minutes more or until golden and crunchy on the outside.

Fried Potatoes with Lemon, Red Pepper and Cilantro

 

Add lemon juice and red pepper flakes and toss to coat, cook about 5 minutes more over med heat. Then toss with cilantro and serve.

Fried Potatoes with Lemon, Red Pepper and Cilantro

 

Tossed Salad with Herbs and Lemon Coriander Dressing

Lemon Coriander Dressing

2 T lemon Juice

1 T olive oil

1 t ground coriander

1/4 t black pepper

1/4 t salt

Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl, serve over salad.

Tossed Salad with Herbs

4-6 cups of fresh crisp torn greens ( I used hearts of romaine and spring mix)

1/2 c thinly sliced radishes ( Soak the radishes in ice water after slicing that will remove some of the bitterness and make them crisp)

1/2 c grape tomatoes

1 cucumber peeled and sliced

2 T chopped fresh parsley

2 T chopped fresh mint

 

Toss the salad with the dressing and serve immediately, I topped with grilled chicken and served with warm pita bread.

Herb Tossed Salad with Lemon Coriander Dressing

Herb Tossed Salad with Lemon Coriander Dressing

Leftover Wine Beef Stew

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

 

Left over wine, whats that? I know, I think 750ml is a serving size too, but hey sometimes it happens. Maybe you invited a friend over and you finished your bottle but she had to drive or maybe you thought it was a good idea to open a second bottle and found out you were wrong. Anyway if you somehow find yourself with some extra red wine this is a delicious recipe to make and then open a new bottle of wine to drink with it. It is light, delicate and delicious. I served it with a side of creamed kale.

Leftover Wine Beef Stew

1 1/2 lbs stew meat ( cut into chunks)

6  larger potatoes peeled and cut into 1/8s

2 carrots chopped

1 T corn starch

1/2 t salt

1/8 t pepper

2T oil

1/2 c chopped shallot

1 T chopped parsley

4 sprigs of thyme

1 c red wine ( I used a Cabernet)

1 c beef broth

1 t Dijon mustard

1 T red wine vinegar

Add corn starch salt and pepper into a large ziplock bag. Add meat and shake to coat. Heat oil in a large skillet, add coated meat and shallot and stir until meat is browned on all sides. Add to slow cooker. Add Potatoes, carrots, parsley. thyme, wine, broth, mustard and vinegar to slow cooker, cover and cook on low for 6 hours (or high for 3) or until potatoes are cooked through.

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

Left Over Wine Beef Stew

 

Easy Sunday Dinner: Steak, Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

Easy Sunday Dinner: Steak, Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

 

Here is a menu for an easy, yet elegant Sunday dinner. Montreal Seasoned Top Sirloin Filets, Cheesy Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

For the steak liberally sprinkle both sides with Montreal steak seasoning (found in the spice aisle at the grocery store). Grill to your desired doneness. See so far so easy.

Hasselback Potatoes

5 large baking potatoes

6T melted butter

1 t chopped garlic

1 t dried parsley

1/2 t salt

1/4 t black pepper

1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese

Pre heat oven to 400. Peel and dry potatoes. carefully slice potatoes 3/4 of the way down, making sure not to slice all the way through in 1/4 ” slices (this is the hardest part of the meal) In a small bowl combine butter, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper. Place potatoes in an oven proof baking dish and pour butter mixture over top making sure to get into all the crevices.

Hasselback Potatoes

 

Cook for 1 hour, basting the potatoes every 15 minutes. Using a hot pad, tilt baking pan to the side and use a spoon to catch the butter, spoon back over potatoes.

Hasselback Potatoes

 

Remove from oven, sprinkle cheddar cheese on top and place back into the oven until cheese is melted

Hasselback Potatoes

 

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

16-20 spears of asparagus

4 slices of Prosciutto Ham

 

Preheat oven to 400. Bundle 4-5 spears of asparagus together and wrap with prosciutto. Place on a baking sheet.

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

 

Cook for about 10 minutes or until ham is crispy.

Serve meal with sour cream and bernaise sauce if desired.

Easy Sunday Dinner: Steak, Hasselback Potatoes and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

 

 

 

Rosemary and Tangerine Shrimp with White Bean Puree

 

Why is it that the best recipes come out of necessity? I was feeling lazy and did not want to go to the grocery store so I used all the leftovers in my pantry, freezer, and herb garden and they came together like magic. These shrimp were light, flavorful, easy and delicious. The rosemary and tangerine worked beautifully together, but I think oranges would be fine too. Great with the white bean puree, also dug up from the pantry, but would be good with rice or pasta as well.

Rosemary and Tangerine Shrimp

1lb frozen shrimp defrosted under cold water

1 tsp tangerine zest

juice from 2 tangerines

4 cloves of garlic chopped

1 T chopped rosemary

1 t salt

2 t olive oil

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl or large ziplock bag and add shrimp, marinate in the refrigerator for 1/2 hour.

Heat a large skillet over med high, remove shrimp from marinade and place in pan, saving marinade. cook for 5 minutes, turning once.

 

add marinade back to pan and bring to a boil, simmer for 1-2 minutes. Serve.

 

White Bean Puree

2 cans white beans, drained and rinsed

1 T lemon juice

1 tsp lemon zest

1 T parsley chopped

3 cloves of garlic

1/4 c water

Add all ingredients to a sauce pan, bring to a boil and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes. Mash, blend or use a food processor to make into a puree.

 

Return from NYC and a Potato Salad Recipe

It’s the weekend and I have returned from my trip to NYC, cooking has not been a priority as much as getting my house back in order. I left my husband and 2 teenagers in charge for 5 days and came back to a car without gas, piles of laundry, a parched herb and vegetable garden and an empty cupboard. I am pretty sure no one dusted or ran a vacuum either. I am not going to complain because everyone is alive and accounted for and if this is what has to happen for me to be able to take my little trips than that is a small price to pay. So today’s recipe is one that I made when we had a baseball night in. It is a perfect accompaniment to hot dogs, burgers or barbecue.

12 med sized red skinned potatoes ( I left the skins on, but if you like them peeled go ahead.)

2 stalks celery chopped fine

3 hard-boiled eggs chopped

1 1/2 T fresh chopped parsley

1t fresh dill chopped

3/4 c mayo

2T red wine vinegar

1t salt

Place potatoes in a large pot cover with water, bring to a boil and reduce heat. Cook until tender. Pour into a colander and drain. When potatoes are cool enough to work with cut into bite sized pieces and place in a large mixing bowl (don’t wait until potatoes are cold because they will be less porous and won’t absorb the flavors of the ingredients), add remaining ingredients  and mix together. Cover and place in refrigerator until chilled.