Creating a Better Life

So as life gets more and more complicated and there are more and more stimuli thrown at us I want, no make that I NEED to simplify and minimize my life.  One of the ways I’m doing that is by creating a singularly better creative space for myself over at SAVORY KITCHEN TABLE where I am combining all my blogs into one.  Please follow and join me there for all future posts and recipes.

HONEY BALSAMIC ROAST PORK TENDERLOIN with SLOW ROASTED PAPRIKA POTATOES

Normally I'd give you the main dish recipe first, but with this combo the potatoes come first.  This meal was a HUGE hit and yet was SOOOOOOOO simple to make.

HONEY BALSAMIC ROAST PORK TENDERLOIN with SLOW ROASTED PAPRIKA POTATOES
SLOW ROASTED PAPRIKA POTATOES
16 small new red potatoes**, washed and unpeeled
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Lightly spray the inside of your crock pot with PAM.
  • Layer potatoes loosely.
  • Whisk together the butter and seasonings.
  • Pour butter mixture evenly over the potatoes.
  • Cover. 
  • Cook on low 7 hours or high 4 hours.
  • Remove potatoes to serving dish.
  • Add 1/4 cup chicken broth to drippings whisking until well blended.
  • Pour over potatoes.
HONEY BALSAMIC ROAST PORK TENDERLOIN
2 pound pork tenderloin
4 tablespoons KEN's honey balsamic dressing
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • Preheat oven to 425˚.
  • Season tenderloin with sea salt and pepper.
  • Whisk together dressing, garlic and thyme.
  • Coat tenderloin with half of dressing mixture.
  • Roast 15 minutes or until 140˚.
  • Brush with remaining dressing.
  • Slice and serve.
**works great with small Yukon potatoes too for a slightly different flavor

SLOW COOKED PORK TENDERLOIN & SAUERKRAUT

SLOW COOKED PORK TENDERLOIN AND SAUERKRAUT
makes 6-8 servings

2-32 ounce jars of sauerkraut, drained
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 package Lipton onion soup mix
3 pound boneless pork loin roast
3 tablespoons brown mustard**
  • Combine sauerkraut, chicken broth and Lipton soup mix until well blended.**
  • Add pork roast, cutting in half if necessary to avoid over crowding.
  • Set on low for 8 hours.
**The original recipe called for water instead of chicken broth and for the mustard which I HAD to eliminate due to allergies (I'd like to live to make another recipe) and we loved it so I don't believe the mustard is necessary, but add it if you like.

GLAZED STUFFED PORK CHOPS

Glazed Stuffed Pork Chops
4 VERY thick pork chops
8 slices oatnut bread
butter
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup apricot pineapple jam, room temperature**
1 tablespoon peach schnapps
1 large lemon, juiced
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Slit each pork chop along 2 sides to create a large pocket.
  • *Toast each slice of bread well and then lightly butter.
  • Cut each piece into small squares.
  • Toss with thyme, garlic salt and pepper.
  • Stuff each pork chop with 1/3 cup of mixture.
  • Whisk together the jam, peach schnapps, red pepper flakes, ginger and lemon juice.
  • Place chops in a square greased baking dish.
  • Arrange remaining stuffing around the edges.
  • Glaze chops and stuffing tops.
  • Bake uncovered 30 minutes.
  • Turn chops, glaze chops and stuffing again. Bake another 30 minutes.

*If you prefer, prepare 1 box of stove top stuffing instead.
**Tonight I used Lemon Curd and had a distinctively fresh flavor with the same consistency.  Use whatever flavor speaks to you.

POTATO PANCAKES

This one is for Riley at Pig'n'Pancake in Seaside.  Thank you for being a great server and so friendly. You made breakfast enjoyable during our stay.
POTATO PANCAKES
3+ cups peeled, grated & squeezed* potatoes
1 large bunch green onions, minced or 1 small Vidalia onion, minced
1/2 cup self rising flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup buttermilk**
1 egg, beaten
4 tablespoons butter, melted

  • Sift together the flour, salt and pepper.
  • Whisk together the buttermilk, egg and butter until smooth.
  • Whisk in the flour mixture until well blended.
  • Fold in the potatoes and onions.
  • Drop onto hot griddle and make your pancakes.
  • Serve with applesauce and sour cream or with the Sauerbraten gravy.
*I use a cheese cloth towel as my base. I grate the potatoes on top of it and then bring all the corners together like a knapsack wrapping the potatoes inside. I continue to tighten the turns until I squeezed all the moisture from the potatoes.

**I generally use regular milk and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar.

CHIPOLTE CHEDDAR MACARONI & CHEESE ala TAMY

I originally thought this was going to be just another mac and cheese recipe and maybe if I had followed the recipe it would have been, but instead I "doctored" the recipe to fit hubby's taste and what I had on hand. The results according to hubby were phenomenal, but requests I make it again so he can tell for sure. 
CHIPOLTE CHEDDAR MACARONI & CHEESE ala TAMY
1 1/2 cups dried macaroni (elbows or shells)
1 1/4 cup diced ham
1/2 cup garlic pepper crispy onions
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper, to taste
4 slices Chipolte cheddar cheese, torn into pieces
3 slices sharp cheddar cheese, torn into pieces
3 slices white American cheese, torn into pieces
  • Preheat oven to 350˚.
  • Prepare macaroni according to package directions. Drain well.
  • Using the same pan, melt butter and add cream until smooth.
  • Add cheese a few pieces at a time, stirring until well blended.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Add ham pieces, coating them well with sauce.
  • Fold in pasta.
  • Pour into casserole dish.
  • Sprinkle with crispy onions.
  • Bake 20 minutes or until heated through and golden on top.

CHICKEN and GREEN CHILE FLAUTAS


CHICKEN & GREEN CHILE FLAUTAS
3 cups cooked and shredded rotisserie chicken
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sour cream
1 can original Rotel tomatoes and chiles, drained VERY well
1 small can green chiles, drained VERY well
1 bunch green onions, sliced lengthwise and then again in half moons
sea salt and pepper, to taste
1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar and jack Mexican mix cheese
6 inch flour tortillas
Canola oil for frying
Salsa, sour cream, guacamole and taco sauce for dipping
  • In a large bowl combine the chicken pieces, cream cheese, sour cream, Rotel tomatoes and chiles and shredded cheese until well blended.
  • Fill each tortilla with two heaping tablespoons of chicken mixture towards one side and then roll tightly.  Place seam side down on a platter.  DO NOT begin frying until they are all filled.  
  • Add enough oil to a large skillet to generously cover the bottom.  Heat to medium.
  • Cook tortillas seam side down and then turning to brown all the way around.
  • DO NOT crowd the pan.
  • Drain on paper towels.
  • Serve with your favorite sauces.

PB&J CHICKEN STEW

I first saw this recipe on a blog and thought, hmmm maybe. Then it kept showing up again and again so I finally tried it. I've adapted it from what I originally printed out and unfortunately I don't know where I first saw it, but I'll give you the original and notate my changes in red and then you can decide for yourself.  We LOVED it. Perfect for a cool winter's night.
PB&J CHICKEN STEW
8 skinless chicken breasts, thighs or drumsticks
1 large onion, chopped
8 ounces mushrooms, quartered
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
1/4 cup grape jelly or berry jam/jelly
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/2 inch strips
2 tablespoons chopped peanuts
4 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into chunks
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley 
1 knorr chicken gel boullion
1/2 cup hot water
1/4 cup creamy JIF
1/8 cup black and blue berry jam (courtesy of my SIL - YUMMY BTW)
2 tablespoons Classico sun-dried tomato pesto
1 celery stalk, sliced
1 large carrot, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
  • Place chicken pieces in the slow cooker. 
  • Add onions, carrots, celery and parsley.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together stock, peanut butter, jelly, tomato pesto. Pour over chicken and vegetables.
  • Cover and cook on low 5-7 hours or high for **2-4 hours until chicken is cooked through.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes.
**I was in a hurry and my chicken was not quite thawed which made it easier to cut into chunks. I cooked it on high for 3 hours and it was PERFECT!

CHOCOLATE GRANOLA BITES

CHOCOLATE GRANOLA CANDY
2 1/4 cups granola cereal
1/3 cup diced dried apricots
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/3 cup pomegranate craisins
12 ounces milk chocolate chips
  • In a medium bowl combine cereal with fruits.
  • Microwave chocolate in 30 second iincrements until you can stir it smooth.
  • Immediate pour chocolate over cereal and fruit folding until well coated.
  • Drop by teaspoonfuls onto a foil lined cookie sheet.
  • Chill until set.
  • Store in a cool place in an airtight container.

CHICKEN CHILE CORN CUSTARDS

CHICKEN CHILE CORN CUSTARDS
2 medium fresh poblano or Anaheim chile peppers, roasted
1 small sweet red pepper, roasted
2 cups rotisserie chicken pieces
5 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup whipping cream
1 1/2 cups Green Giant white corn niblets, drained
3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 can green chiles, drained well
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
2 tablespoons fresh chopped chives
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Preheat oven to 425˚.
  • Grease 6 six ounce ramekins.
  • Place ramekins in a 13x9 baking dish.
  • In a large bowl combine eggs and cream.
  • Fold in peppers, corn, chicken, cheese, bread crumbs, chives, chili powder, salt and pepper.
  • Pour mixture evenly into ramekins.
  • Place baking dish on center rack in the middle of the oven.
  • Add 1 inch of boiling water to the baking dish.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.
  • Remove ramekins from water and serve on plates.

SNAPPER WRAPPERS

SNAPPER PATRICK from PAT'S FISHERMAN'S WHARF was a fantastic choice!!  I will make this again and again, but next time I will go simpler and make it more of a casserole bake.
SNAPPER WRAPPERS
1 pound lump crabmeat, drained (I used chopped flaked Krab)
4 skinned red snapper fillets (any white fish would work)
1 teaspoon salt (we felt this was too much-next time I'll use 1/4 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon garlic powder (we felt this was too much-next time I'll use 1/2 teaspoon or fresh)
1 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 tablespoons water
lemon wedges (I used lemon slices under each roll up while cooking)

  • Preheat oven to 400˚.
  • Pick crabmeat, removing any bits of shell.
  • Cut snapper fillets in half lengthwise.
  • Top each fillet with about 1/3 cup crabmeat.
  • Roll up fillets and secure with wooden toothpicks.
  • Blend together the salt, garlic powder and red pepper.
  • Combine melted butter and water in the bottom of your baking dish, blending well.
  • Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of seasoning mix over top of the butter  mixture.
  • Arrange roll ups in baking dish.
  • Sprinkle roll ups with remaining seasoning mixture.
  • Bake uncovered for 16-18 minutes or fish flakes when tested with a fork.
  • Plate roll ups. 
  • Spoon pan drippings over roll ups before serving.
  • Serve with lemon wedges.
Good cooking is an art, as well as a form of intense pleasure... A recipe is only a theme, which an intelligent cook can play each time with a variation. ~Madame Jehane Benoit, Chef (1904-1987)