SKILLET CHOPS & OVEN BRAISED RAINBOW CARROTS

This recipe came out of a an old (1960’s) cookbook put together for a lake area homeowner’s association. I loved the sound of it, but canned pork and beans use mustard in their recipes and I’m deathly allergic so I had to adapt it and the flavor profile was GREAT.

SKILLET CHOPS
2 tablespoons butter
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
4 thick bone in pork chops
1/2 sweet onion, sliced thin
1 can great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup tomato sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons jalapeno ketchup

  • Melt butter in cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Saute onions 1-2 minutes
  • Generously season chops on both sides.
  • Add chops and quickly sear to a golden brown.
  • Whisk together the tomato sauce, brown sugar and jalapeno ketchup.
  • Fold beans into sauce.
  • Arrange beans around pork chops, cover and simmer on LOW 15-30 minutes until chops are cooked through.

OVEN BRAISED RAINBOW CARROTS
1 1/2 pounds rainbow carrots, cleaned and cut to like sizes
4 LARGE green onions, halved lengthwise
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/3 cup orange juice
3 tablespoons melted butter or avocado oil
1 medium shallot, FINELY chopped
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper to taste

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Whisk together the butter or oil, orange juice, vinegar, orange zest, shallots, FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Toss carrots, and green onions with orange juice mixture.
  • Pour into a large flat baking dish, cover with foil and bake 15 minutes.
  • Remove foil and bake another 30 minutes.

BUTTER BRAISED PORK ROAST ala SLOW COOKER

BUTTER BRAISED PORK ROAST ala SLOW COOKER
3-4 pound pork loin
1 bunch green onions, sliced
3 cloves Garlic, minced
4-5 FRESH sprigs of thyme leaves
1 cube KNORR cilantro
1 cube KNORR chipotle
1 cube KNORR garlic
1 tablespoon MONTANA MEX sweet seasoning blend
1 Pinch red pepper flakes
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/2 cup butter, divided

  • Blot pork roast dry and generously season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat.
  • Sear all sides of roast 1-2 minutes.
  • Place roast in slow cooker.
  • Wipe out skillet of excess oil.
  • Melt butter in skillet.
  • Whisk in seasonings and thyme leaves.
  • Add onions, sautéing a minute.
  • Add garlic and sauté another minute.
  • Pour over pork roast.
  • Cook on LOW 5 hours.
  • Move pork roast to a plate to rest and cover with foil.

GRAVY
stock from slow cooker
1 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon better than bouillon chicken stock
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour

  • Melt butter in saucepan.
  • Whisk in cornstarch and flour.
  • Add chicken stock and whisk until smooth.
  • Add renderings from the slow cooker and whisk until smooth and thickened.
  • Adjust seasoning and serve over mashed potatoes with gravy.

BAKED ASIAGO MEATBALL PARMESAN

BAKED ASIAGO MEATBALL PARMESAN

1/2 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
1 cup shredded Asiago cheese
FRESH chopped flat leaf parsley, to taste
FRESH chopped oregano, to taste
FRESH chopped basil, to taste
2 LARGE eggs
FRESH ground sea salt and pepper, to taste
3 cups marinara sauce
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Mix ground meats, garlic, breadcrumbs, Asiago cheese, parsley, eggs, salt and pepper together until well blended.
  • Form golf ball sized meatballs.
  • Coat a rimmed baking pan with avocado oil and place meatballs on pan.
  • Bake 20 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and cool slightly.
  • In a large cast iron ovenproof skillet (I use my enameled cast iron crock pot) whisk together the marinara and chicken broth.
  • Bring sauce to a SLOW & LOW simmer.
  • Add meatballs to sauce and simmer 4-6 hours.
  • Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over the top until completely covered.
  • Cover dish and bake 20 minutes.
  • Remove foil and bake an additional 20 minutes until golden.
  • Serve with a side of pasta.

SMOKED PORK CHOPS & SAUERKRAUT ala SLOW COOKER

SMOKED PORK CHOPS & SAUERKRAUT ala SLOW Cooker – serves 4

4 bone-in pork chops, at least 3/4 inch thick
FRESH ground salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup FRESH grated apples
2 VIDALIA onions, chopped
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced
2 LARGE carrots, peeled and sliced into 1 inch pieces
2 pounds sauerkraut and its juice
4-6 LARGE sprigs rosemary

  • Spray crock pot insert with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl toss together gently the sauerkraut and its juice, apples, onions and carrots.
  • Spoon half the mixture into the slow cooker.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of butter over medium high heat in large skillet.
  • Do a quick sear on each side of pork chops.
  • Top with pork chops in a single layer if possible.
  • Cover with remaining sauerkraut mixture on top of pork chops.
  • Sprinkle with rosemary sprigs.
  • Cover and cook on low 2-3 hours or until chops are cooked though and carrots and apples are tender.
  • Remove sprigs and enjoy.

BAKED ZITI

Like Lasagna, but not all the hassle? Makes Broken Lasagna AKA Baked Ziti or ANY pasta for that matter – it’s all about the flavors 😀

BAKED ZITI Recipe Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 55 minutes Yield: Serves at least 8
1 pound ziti or pasta of your choice
Avocado oil
1/2 pound ground Italian sausage
1/2 pound ground beef or pork
1 large onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon FRESH basil, minced
1 tablespoon Garden Gourmet Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
32 ounces marinara (jar or your own homemade)
1/2 pound of grated Mozzarella cheese
1 heaping cup of ricotta cheese
1 cup FRESH grated Parmesan cheese

  • Heat a large pot of water to a hard boil.
  • Add a tablespoon of salt.
  • Add the pasta and cook at a rolling boil, uncovered, until the pasta is al dente—edible but still a little firm to the bite.
  • Drain the pasta well.
  • Toss with a little avocado oil so it doesn’t stick together.
  • Set aside.

 

  • Heat a tablespoon of avocado oil in a large sauté pan on medium-high heat.
  • When the oil is hot, add the sausage and ground beef or ground pork, breaking up any large chunks as it cooks. Brown well.
  • Season with FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Drain off any excessive grease, but leave a little for flavor.
  • Add onions and garlic, sautéing until the onions are translucent and beginning to brown, about 4-5 minutes.
  • Add the basil, Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes, stirring to combine and coat well.
  • Add the marinara sauce and stir well.
  • Bring to a simmer.

 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • Spread a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of a 9×13-inch casserole pan.
  • Add dollops of half the ricotta cheese.
  • Ladle a spoonful of sauce into the pasta, stir it well and then add the pasta into the casserole.
  • Pour the rest of the sauce over the pasta.
  • Add dollops of the remaining ricotta cheese over top.
  • Sprinkle the mozzarella and the Parmesan cheese on top.
  • Bake for 20 minutes until the top is lightly browned and the cheese melted.

NOTES:

  • I sometimes add small mini meatballs for fun 😀
  • You can substitute dried herbs if that is all you have on hand. Use 1 teaspoon dried oregano, 1 teaspoon dried basil and 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme to replace the Italian seasoning.

PORK CHOPS in TOMATO GRAVY

PORK CHOPS in TOMATO GRAVY
4 bone-in pork chops
4 slices bacon, diced
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons avocado oil
1 onion, diced small
1 celery rib, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons WONDRA flour
1 tablespoon QUALITY tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup tomato sauce
1 teaspoon FRESH minced thyme leaves

  • Combine paprika, sugar, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper until well mixed.
  • Pat pork chops dry.
  • Rub chops on both sides with spice mixture.
  • Cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until crispy. Remove bacon pieces with a slotted spoon to drain on paper toweling
  • Add chops to bacon grease and sear 4-5 minutes.
  • Transfer chops to a plate browned side up.
  • Add onion, celery and garlic to pan, sauteing until softened.
  • Add flour and tomato paste, stirring and cooking until well mixed.
  • Add chicken broth, tomato sauce, thyme and bacon pieces.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil.
  • Lower to a simmer, return chops to pan browned side up and simmer 8-10 minutes until chops register 145°.
  • Transfer chops to rest on a platter and tent with foil for 5-10 minutes.
  • Season gravy to taste and keep warm.
  • Serves over prepared pasta, rice or mashed potatoes.

PINEAPPLE ORANGE ROAST HAM with APPLE BUTTER GLAZE

PINEAPPLE ORANGE ONION ROAST HAM with APPLE BUTTER GLAZE
1 LARGE navel orange
1 medium red onion
1 pineapple, rind removed, halved
7 pound fully cooked bone-in ham
1/4 cup ginger beer
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon Bragg’s liquid aminos
1/2 cup apple butter (see note)
2 tablespoons QUALITY honey

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Cut half of the pineapple into slices and the other half into chunks.
  • Arrange orange slices, onion slices and pineapple rings in roasting pan.
  • Pour 1/4 cup of ginger beer over ham.
  • Cover with foil, sealing edges.
  • Bake 60 minutes.
  • While ham is baking puree pineapple chunks with the apple butter and honey.
  • Transfer puree to a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add brown sugar and liquid aminos, blending well. Simmer 30-45 minutes, stirring frequently until syrupy and reduced to about 1 cup.
  • Remove ham from oven, uncover and brush 1/3 cup of syrup over ham and return to oven for 5 minutes.
  • Brush another 1/3 cup of syrup over ham for another 5 minutes.
  • Brush with remaining glaze and return to oven uncovered for final 10 minutes.
  • Use an immersion blender on the remaining pieces in the drippings to build a gravy from if desired.

NOTE: This recipe also works with orange marmalade or apricot pineapple jam.

BBQ PULLED PORK

BBQ PULLED PORK

2 pounds boneless pork shoulder
2 tablespoons smoked paprika
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 tablespoons avocado oil
1 1/2 cups BBQ sauce (whatever your favorite is)

  • Stir together the paprika, cayenne, garlic powder and onion powder.
  • Rub seasonings all over the pork and chill several hours or overnight.

 

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • In a large dutch oven heat avocado oil over medium-high heat.
  • Brown pork 3 minutes per side until seared well.
  • Add BBQ sauce.
  • Cover and roast 5 hours undisturbed.**
  • Shred pork with 2 forks and mix well with the sauce.

NOTE: This recipe can also be made in slow cooker 4 hours on HIGH or 8 hours on LOW.

SLOW COOKER PORK CHOPS & RICE

SLOW COOKER PORK CHOPS & RICE Yield: 6-8 servings
I think grams originally found this on a Campbell’s soup label and her version was always done in the oven, which is part of what makes it a filling, hearty, winter family meal. Preparing this in the slow cooker makes it even easier and even more versatile! A little goes a long way, making it super easy and budget friendly too!

4 boneless pork chops
1 bunch green onions, chopped or sliced thin
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
1 – 10.5 ounce can cream of mushroom soup (see notes)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
FRESH ground sea salt and tri-color pepper, to taste
1 stick of butter, cubed

  • Spray the slow cooker insert with non-stick spray.
  • Add the pork chops.
  • Top with onions.
  • Whisk together the mushroom soup, chicken broth, water, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Pour over pork chops and onions.
  • Add the cubes of butter on top.
  • Replace lid and cook on LOW for 6-7 hours.
  • Remove lid and shred the pork chops.

2 cups long grain white rice
1 cup water
1 to 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

  • Add the rice and 1 cup of water.
  • Stir to make sure the rice is covered with liquid and replace the lid.
  • Cook on HIGH for 45 minutes to one more hour, or until rice is done cooking.
  • Remove the lid, add the shredded cheese, and stir.
  • Enjoy!

NOTE:

  • I change up the soup flavor to my likes of the day 😀
  • I also sometimes skip the rice portion and make potatoes instead.

THYME BALSAMIC PORK CHOPS

THYME BALSAMIC PORK CHOPS
4 LARGE bone-in pork chops
FRESH ground sea salt and tri-color pepper
1 shallot sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons FRESH minced thyme
2 tablespoons orange zest
1/4 cup orange juice

  • Melt butter and avocado oil in large skillet.
  • Generously season pork chops with FRESH ground sea salt and pepper.
  • Add pork chops to skillet and sear 4 minutes, flip and repeat on second side. Transfer pork chops to plate and keep warm.
  • Add shallot and garlic to pan, sauteing 2 minutes until tender.
  • Add thyme, orange juice, zest and vinegar to skillet, cooking 2-3 minutes until reduced to a glaze consistency.
  • Return chops to pan, turning to coat in glaze.
  • Serve immediately.

NOTE: I used orange pineapple juice and coconut pineapple balsamic vinegar this time and was extremely pleased!

MILK BRAISED PORK LOIN

I’m picking a different cook book each month to try new recipes from.  This month 😀 and probably next  is Cook’s Science from America’s Test Kitchen/Cook’s Illustrated.

MILK BRAISED PORK LOIN
2-2 1/2 boneless pork loin roast, trimmed
1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup sugar
2 quarts cold water

  • In a large container dissolve salt and sugar into cold water.
  • Submerge the roast in the brine, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.

1/2 cup water
2 ounces salt pork
3 cups WHOLE milk
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon FRESH minced thyme
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup dry wine
3 tablespoons FRESH chopped parsley
1 teaspoon creamy horseradish* (see note)
FRESH ground sea salt and tri-color pepper

  • Remove roast from brine and pat dry.
  • Preheat oven to 275°.
  • Bring water and salt pork to a simmer in a dutch oven over medium heat.
  • Simmer 5 or so until water evaporates and salt pork begins to sizzle. Continue cooking until salt pork is browned and fat has rendered.
  • Using slotted spoon remove salt pork and discard.
  • Increase heat to medium high.
  • Add roast and brown on ALL sides.
  • Transfer roast to plate.
  • Add milk, garlic, thyme and baking soda to pot and bring to a simmer, being sure to scrape up any browned bits. Continue cooking 15 minutes or so, stirring frequently, until milk is starting to brown and becoming the consistency of heavy cream.
  • Reduce heat to medium low and cook a few minutes more until mixture becomes the consistency of a thin batter. Remove from heat.
  • Return roast to the pot, turning to coat in milk mixture, cover and transfer to oven for 20 minutes, turn again and roast another 20-25 minutes until roasts registers 140°.
  • Transfer roast to carving board, tent with foil and allow to rest 15 minutes before slicing.
  • Transfer any accumulated juices from the carving board to the pot with the milk mixture.
  • Add wine and bring to a simmer over medium high heat. Whisk constantly to smooth out sauce.
  • Simmer 2-3 minutes until gravy thins.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Whisk in Parsley and creamy horseradish.
  • Adjust seasoning.
  • Use immersion blender if necessary to cream sauce.
  • Slice roast into 1/4 inch slices and transfer to serving platter.
  • Spoon sauce over slices and serve immediately.

NOTE:

  • Original recipe called for Dijon mustard, but I have a severe allergy to mustard so I substitute creamy horseradish.
  • Buttermilk is a GREAT substitute for the whole milk that is also a technical fix for the gravy turning lumpy.  There was a technical explanation to the whole reason why, but the bottom line is that it works! 😀

AMALFI POSITANO CHICKEN or PORK

I found this scrap of a recipe in my BIG bin of recipe scraps and the name POSITANO chicken intrigued me so I did a little research and decided to make the recipe.  Positano is a cliff side village on the Amalfi coast that is known primarily for seafood, FRESH pasta and Buffalo Mozzarella cheese.  So, I have NO idea why this recipe was originally written for chicken 😀  but it was and I have adapted it to fit not only chicken, but also pork. Since cheese and seafood are not usually a great mix I have no real plans to adapt it to the seafood that the Amalfi coast is famous for.  Overall it kind of reminds me of an Italian version of Chicken Kiev.

AMALFI POSITANO CHICKEN or PORK serves 6
6 – 8 ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/3 pound ground Italian sausage, cooked crumbly, drained of grease and cooled
1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
3 cups grated Mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup roasted red pepper, diced and cooled
1/4 cup FRESH small torn basil leaves
2 cups all purpose flour
6 eggs, whisked
3 cups seasoned Italian bread crumbs
3 tablespoons avocado oil

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Line a baking tray with foil LIGHTLY sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Cover chicken breasts with plastic wrap and pound chicken breast (or pork chop) until all breasts are the same thickness around under 1/2 an inch.
  • Mix together the Romano cheese, Mozzarella cheese, chopped peppers, crumbled sausage and basil pieces until well blended.
  • Place about 1/2 cup of cheese mixture in the center of each chicken breast. Fold chicken breast over and seal edges with toothpicks.
  • Set up a dredging station with flour, eggs and bread crumbs.
  • Dredge each chicken breasts in flour, then eggs followed by bread crumbs.
  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  • Add chicken breasts in batches, sauteing 2-3 minutes all sides until golden.
  • Place chicken pieces on baking tray.
  • Bake 8-10 minutes until cheese begins to ooze from the edges.
  • Serve over prepared pasta or mashed potatoes.
  • Top with Marsala sauce. (recipe below)

MARSALA SAUCE
3 tablespoons avocado oil
1/4 cup shallot, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 pound Beech mushrooms
3 tablespoons WONDRA flour
1/2 cup Marsala wine
1 1/2 cups beef stock
FRESH ground sea salt and pepper, to taste

  • Add oil to heavy hot saucepan.
  • Add shallots, garlic and mushrooms, sautéing until mushrooms are tender.
  • Add flour and cook about 1 minute.
  • Deglaze pan with Marsala wine.
  • Add beef stock and cook until thick and flavors are blended.
  • Adjust seasoning and serve over meat and pasta.

NOTE: When I substitute the chicken for pork, I use center cut pork loin chops.  I also substitute the Romano for Fontina cheese.