- 1 onion, diced
- 2 strips bacon, cut into 1″ pieces
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, whole
- 1 lb pork roast (I used loin but I think any pork roast will work), cut into 1″ squares
- 1 large chicken leg quarter, cut off bones into small bits
- 1 28oz can San Marzano tomatoes (These guys: http://goo.gl/Sd4Nd. They are the best thing ever when it’s styrofoam-tomato season, AKA winter)
- 1 cup cheap white wine
- 1 cup stock (I used veggie but chicken, beef or whatever you have around should work… as long as it’s not fish stock)
- 2 chorizos (Spanish) sliced into circles
- 2 large carrots
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 3 tbsp fresh oregano
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 cups small white beans
- 1/4 cup savoy cabbage (thinly diced – regular green cabbage will work too.)
- 3 tbsp fresh flat-leaf italian parsley, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp shallot, finely chopped
In the bottom of a dutch oven, sautée bacon, celery, garlic and onion with some salt & pepper. Throw in the pork roast and chicken. Stir around and barely brown. Add in the can of tomatoes, wine, stock and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer low for about 20 min. Add chorizo and carrots. Stir and simmer covered (another 10 or so). Add in spices, fresh oregano and bell pepper. Cover and simmer another 5-10 minutes. Throw in the beans. (This time, I cooked mine from scratch in the pressure cooker*, but canned beans should be fine too.) Stir it up and keep simmering until pork is as tender as softened butter. Turn off the heat. Add in the cabbage, parsley and shallot. Stir them up and let the residual heat soften them. Total cook time for me was just over an hour.
Serve with crusty buttered bread on a rainy night!
* This was my first time using the pressure cooker and I’m am a little afraid of it. But damn! It cooks beans FAST!
This one is a warm and hearty pasta sauce, great for a cold night. It’s also very low fat and full of healthy vegetables. This recipe can easily be made vegan or vegetarian by eliminating the turkey sausage or replacing it with a meat-substitute sausage.
- 8 oz whole wheat fusilli
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3/4 lb of spicy turkey sausage, sliced into bite-sized pieces
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 8 oz crimini mushrooms
- handful of fresh basil
- 1 cup red onion
- 1 cup white wine
- red pepper flakes
- 1 cup diced fresh tomato
In the work bowl of your food processor, add the onion, garlic, mushrooms, basil, olive oil, white wine and a dash of salt. Grind into a thick paste. You may need to work in batches.
In a hot skillet, brown the sausage on all sides. Add the mixture from the food processor and simmer until the sausage is cooked through.
Serve over whole wheat fusilli
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 15 min
Servings : 6
Posted in dinner, Recipes, Sauces
Tagged cooking, cooking light, dinner, eating light, food, healthy cooking, italian food, low fat, mushrooms, pesto, Recipes, sausage, turkey recipes, vegan, vegetarian
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- 4-5 lbs pork shoulder roast
- kosher salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp cumin
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- black pepper
- 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
- 3-4 dried chili peppers
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1 white or yellow onion, sliced into rings
- juice of 1 orange
- juice of 1 lime
- 32 oz chicken stock
Rub meat all over with salt and a good sprinkling of cumin, chili powder and black pepper. Heat a large dutch oven on the stove and add olive oil. Sear the meat thoroughly on all sides until the surfaces are crispy.
Add everything else into the pan including the rest of the spices: more cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper.
Bake covered for 3-4 hours at 350. It’s done when so tender it’s falling off the bones.
Remove from the dutch oven and place into a 9×13 baking pan. With a pair of forks, shred the meat. Discard the bone and layer of fat from the bottom. If there is remaining liquid spoon about a cup and a half over the top.
Place uncovered into a 500 degree oven for 20 minutes or until the ends are carmelized.
Serve with fresh corn tortillas.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: approximately 4 hours
Posted in dinner, Ingredients, Recipes
Tagged carnitas, dinner, food, Ingredients, mexican food, pork, pork roast, Recipes, slow cooking
This delicious dish is a culinary commitment to make, but well worth it. It’s better than bacon. While you can’t enjoy this delicious camelized pork often—you’d have a heart attack—it’s quite a fabulous treat!
Day 1 – the cure
- 1 lb pork belly with skin – cut into two or three pieces.
- 1 cup course salt
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 2 tbsp whole pepper corns
- 1 tbsp whole cloves
Grind the pepper corns and cloves or place them in a zip top bag and crush them with a mallet. Mix it with the rest of the spices into a powder.
Pat the pork belly dry and then roll each piece in the spices. Place the pork into a small sealable container and pack the rest of the spices around it.
Refrigerate over night.
Day Two – the brine
- 6 cups of water
- 1 1/2 cups of salt
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 pints of water
Heat the first six cups of water with the bay leaves and the salt and sugar until the powders are dissolved. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl. Add the other two cups of water to cool. Stir.
Pour the mixture into the container with the meat and spices. You may not need it all.
Refrigerate over night.
Day Three – the braise
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 yellow onion
- 6-8 cloves of garlic
- 3-4 whole cloves
- 1 tsp finely chopped italian parsley
- 1 stalk of chopped celery
- 1 cup home made soup stock –doesn’t matter what kind as long as it’s home made. (No fish stocks)
- 1 cup red wine
- 1/8 cup soy sauce
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary
Preheat oven to 350.
Remove the meat from the brine. You can throw out the brine. Pat the meat dry with paper towels. This is important.
Place a heavy dutch oven over the fire and get it hot. Add the oil. Sear all sides of the meat on high heat. Pour in the wine and stand back. It will deglaze the pan and fizz all over the place. I recommend getting the soup stock in there as quickly as possible.
Add the rest of the ingredients. Cover and bake at 350 for 90 minutes. Reduce heat to 180 and cook for two hours.
Meat will be dark and caramelized on the outside and oh-so tender on the inside.
Posted in Bacon, dinner, Ingredients, Recipes
Tagged Bacon, braised pork belly, braising, cooking, dinner, food, pork, pork belly, Recipes, slow cooking
This was so delicious that my husband insisted that it become a blog post! Please take note: lamb requires a whole lot of salt. Don’t go lightly.
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1/8 cup finely chopped garlic
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 small sliced carrot
- 1 lb ground lamb
- 2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms
- 4 oz canned tomato sauce
- 1 1/4 cup red wine
- 2 tbsp finely chopped basil
- 2 tbsp finely chopped Italian parsley
- 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
- 8 oz rotelle pasta
- lots of salt
- fresh ground pepper
- shaved parmesan cheese
Heat your skillet and add the olive oil. Sauteée the onions, garlic and celery with salt until the onions begin to soften. Add the carrot and ground lamb with salt and pepper and begin to brown the meat. Part way through, add the sliced mushrooms. Brown the meat and don’t let it form large clumps. Add the tomato sauce, red wine, rosemary, basil and parsley, and more salt if needed. Cover and keep a low simmer for 15 minutes or so, stirring occasionally.
Serve over pasta. Garnish with some finely minced fresh parsley and shaved parmesan.
Posted in dinner, Ingredients, Recipes
Tagged cooking, dinner, food, italian food, lamb, pasta, ragout, ragu, Recipes
Before you go tossing out your kitchen scraps, why not get some use out of them by making soup stock? It’s SO easy and is a great way to put kitchen scraps to use before you compost them. Use onion skins, orange peels, meat bones, cartilage, fibrous bits, seeds, stems and even not-so-fresh fruits and veggies as long as they aren’t rotten or moldy. Soft or brown spots? No problem!
You need one large stock pot, water, salt and whatever scraps you have lying around. Place it on the back burner and add a very generous amount of salt. Cover and simmer on med or low. Cooking a big feast? Keep it on the stove all day if you want.
When you’re sure you have nothing left to add, and everything in the pot is soft and lost most of it’s color, pour the mixture through a kitchen strainer and into a bowl. Allow it to cool thoroughly. Then divide it into smaller containers and freeze for as long as you like. Next time you have a recipe that calls for stock, you’ve got your own home made batch.
Posted in Ingredients, Recipes, Tips
Tagged compost, cooking, food, kitchen scraps, Recipes, recycling, soup base, soup stock, stock, upcycling
Today, I decided to experiment with grilled flatbread. I’ve never done it before. I read several recipes and then came up with what I thought would be the best combination of ingredients. I had no idea whether it would turn out.
OMG this flatbread was SOOO good. The outside came out crispy and the inside was chewy!! I’m blogging it today so I don’t forget what I did. It went with dry-aged BBQ’d steak like heaven!
- 1/2 tsp dry active yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 1/3 cup of flour + a little more as needed
- 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp kosher salt + a little more
- 1 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh garlic
Pour warm water and yeast into a small bowl, stir and ignore it for about five minutes until the mixture gets a little foamy.
In a mixing bowl, combine 1 1/3 cup of flour, olive oil, 1 tbsp salt, rosemary and water/yeast mixture. Kneed until it forms a nice ball. You can sprinkle in more water as needed.
Make a ball of dough and cover with a kitchen towel. Leave alone for 30-50 minutes.
Spread a little flour on a wooden cutting board. Roll the dough out until it makes an even disk, about 1/4″ thick.
Scrape the mixture up from the wood, keeping the shape. Re-flour the board and lay it back down. The point is to keep the bottom floured and non-sticky.
Sprinkle chopped garlic and kosher salt evenly on the top.
Toss on the BBQ grill for a few minutes. Flip if necessary. Cook until the bread looks done. Slice into strips and serve with your steak dinner.