Monday, February 18, 2013

Seriously Good Burger...

You know I don't need to post about this but I am! I just made and enjoyed the most grub burger.. we all know how to make a hamburger! I took two patties, grilled with sliced cheese, bacon and grilled onions. I made it even better and topped it with an over medium egg!! Holy smokes it was amazing! And just for that reason I felt the need to post pictures of it! I am not sure I would do much more to a burger than what I did tonight, it was beyond tasty!! Everyone should try a nice runny egg on a basic bacon cheese burger! My tummy is very grateful right now ;)

Smokin’ Honey Glazed Pork Chops



Mom pulled a recipe out of a paper insert called American Profile.  I had made this a few weeks ago and for some reason keep forgetting to post about it.  I fully admit that my blog has taken a back seat; I am not always in the mood to cook or bake so I don’t do pictures or try new things.  I am hoping that soon that will change and I can get back to awesome blogging.   We enjoy all kinds of meats in our home and pork is definitely on that list. The recipe is Smokin’ Honey Glazed Pork Chops and they were so good! I have come to love honey and I enjoy anything with a smoky or spicy flavor as well.  I took the chance and made them and damn they are good!! Definitely a recipe I will be making again! Easy and quick and so very tasty!!

Smokin’ Honey Glazed Pork Chops:
1 Tbsp. cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp. smoked paprika
½ tsp. black pepper
1½ Tbsp.  canola oil
4-6 thin pork chops (breakfast chops) (I actually used nice thick boneless chips)
¼ c. honey
1.       Mix spices in medium bowl. Add oil and stir to blend.
2.       Preheat broiler.
3.       Rinse pork chops and pat dry with paper towels.  Place 1 pork chop in bowl and toss until evenly coated with spices.  Set aside.  Repeat with remaining pork chops.
4.       Place pork chops on a broiler pan or wire rack set over a baking sheet, leaving space between.  Broil 2 – 3 minutes.  Turn and cook 2 – 3 minutes.
5.       Brush with honey and cook 1 – 2 minutes or until lightly caramelized.  Flip chops and brush honey on the other side, cook 1 – 2 minutes. 
6.       Remove from oven and let stand 3 – 5 minutes before cutting.
Super tasty!! I served them with homemade mashed potatoes and sautéed Brussels sprouts.  Was definitely a great meal!

Pork Loin and Scalloped Potatoes!



Dinner is served! It has been some time since I was feeling actually ambitious in the kitchen but we had a pork loin out and I have been quite proud of my ability to grill them so I was on a mission! I acquired The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook and figured that is where I will find whatever I wanna make.  Not sure why I wanted Scalloped potatoes but I did, kind of craving them.  I have tried some recipes before but they never quite came out as I wanted, took too long to bake or not creamy; something was always off.  I found an interesting one in the book and decided quite quickly that I was going to make them! I then went to grilling and wanted a dry rub and a glaze and I found both.   I will say dinner that night was awesome! My pork loin was so juicy and flavorful! I will not hesitate to make it like this again and the scalloped potatoes were tasty too.  I will do some tweaks but it is definitely my go to recipe!
This book had a page just of Dry Rubs as well as Wet Rubs; plus the page of Glazes that I was looking for.  I have been keeping Pure Maple syrup on hand and we had some stone ground mustard so I was obviously looking to use them.  I chose to do the Three-pepper dry rub with a Maple-Mustard Glaze.  It was so amazing!
Dry Rub: Three-Pepper Dry Rub:
1 Tbsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. white pepper
1½ tsp. coriander
1½ tsp. cumin
½ tsp. red pepper flakes
½ tsp. cinnamon
Mix together and set aside.
Maple-Mustard Glaze:
2/3 c. whole-grain mustard (I used stone ground)
½ c. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Whisk glaze together and set aside.
**My pork loin was just over 3lbs so I made only half of my glaze. 

The Pork Loin:
1.       Preheat grill.  Rinse and dry pork loin.  Take dry rub and rub it into all parts of your pork loin.  You want it covered and well rubbed down!
2.       Place loin on grill.  At this point I turn my loins every 5-10 minutes.  I have learned that doing this keeps them well balanced in their cooking.  After about 20-30 minutes of cooking, depending on the size, you will begin to glaze.  Glaze and rotate your pork loin every couple of minutes for about another 10 minutes. 
3.       Take your loin off the grill and cover it with foil to rest for 10 min.  Slice and enjoy!



Scalloped Potatoes:
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 onion, chopped finely
1 tbsp. minced fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 ¼  tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
2 ½ lbs. russet potatoes (about 5 medium), peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
1 c. low-sodium chicken broth
1 c. heavy cream (I actually used Skim milk because it is all I had)
4 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded (1 c.) (I just used our shredded Mexican Blend)
1.       Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 425.  Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the thyme, garlic, salt and pepper and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add the potatoes, broth and cream.  Bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are almost tender, about 10 minutes.
2.       Transfer the mixture to an 8-inch square baking dish.  Gently press the potatoes into an even layer and sprinkle with cheddar over the top.  Bake until the cream is bubbling around the edges and the top is golden brown, 15-20 min.  Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
I had no problem with the skim milk; I will definitely try it with the cream as I am sure it will be much creamier.  I would next time omit the thyme and use green onions/or chives.  The thyme was a bit strong for us but I did enjoy it. I definitely want to play with the cheeses as well.  Either way it was a great basic recipe that I will use from here on out! 

I definitely LOVE grilling pork loin! 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

PB-Oreo-Brownie-Cups?

Yea I really don't know what to call these babies but I can call them Yummy!!!! I wanted to make something for Valentines Day for my girls at work. I was completely set on some kind of cupcake but when I logged onto Facebook there was a picture of this brownie filled with Oreo cookies and Peanut Butter!  There were minimal instructions but I figured heck I can try this! There was no link just a picture that was linked to the Facebook page for Kiser Supply, Inc., so I can at least give them that credit for this very awesome suggestion! The instructions were pretty minimal so I winged it and now I have something to work with and oh the idea's flying through my head for these tasty treats! Definitely gonna try something with some Thin Mints! and I need to figure out a Blondie variation! I will say that it is important to find a good cupcake wrapper, I was told to try a foil one so they do not stick. Mine did have a few issues with the paper sticking but they were worth the fight! I will also pass on to make sure and bake for only 20 minutes! I think every minute after that may bring over baking. But seriously so easy and so damn good! I will also mention how much I love Instagram! I love playing with my phone to create pictures, some day I will pull off some awesome professional like pictures. Until then I am stuck with what I got ;).  I also went simple and did creamy peanut butter and basic brownie mix.. this is definitely gonna change ;)


 PB-Oreo-Brownie-Cups:

1 package Oreo cookies ( I actually went generic ;) )
Favorite creamy Peanut Butter
Favorite Brownie Mix

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Line 1 12 cup muffin tin as well as 6 of another pan with foil cupcake liners.
3. Take 1 Oreo top with PB and another Oreo and more PB.  See Picture.  Place the stack in the middle of each cupcake liner. (I did this all before making the batter).
4. Mix brownie batter according to package directions.  Using a medium scoop top each Oreo stack with a scoop of brownie batter. I tried to make sure they were fully covered but not so full that they would make a mess.
5. Place pans in a 350 degree oven and bake for 20 minutes. NO MORE! over baking can affect the texture and make the cookie bottoms very hard!
6. Cool and enjoy.. SO GOOD! 
So many possibilities.. I can't wait to try more!