Monday, April 30, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 4/30 - 5/6

Happy Monday! Sorry for the lack of posting we had a busy week and a very busy weekend! This week we are going back to some old favorites that I will be re-posting. I am looking forward to a lower stress week. I am also looking forward to one of my best bud's bridal shower on Sunday. Have a good one.

Here is what is on tap:

Monday: Ham and Bean Soup
Tuesday:  BLT Sandwiches and Pasta Salad
Wednesday:  Breakfast for dinner (pancakes, eggs & bacon)
Thursday: Leftover Soup
Friday: Work At the Bar
Saturday:  Cheese Lasagna, Salad, and Garlic Bread
Sunday:  Grilled Brats, Grilled Potatoes, and Baked Beans

Breakfast, Treats, and Bites: Tres Leches Cake (for recipe swap)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Copycat Sabbaro's Baked Ziti

When I was a kid going to the mall food court was a big deal. My favorite place to go was Sabbaro's. I would get the small baked ziti and my sister got a slice of cheese pizza...memories.... KB Toys, Claire's, and Maurice's.  I was thinking about this pasta dish while meal planning last week and decided I wanted to find a copycat recipe. I found this copycat recipe from Recipe Mama and knew it was perfect! There is really nothing fancy about this dish or challenging or particularly unique, but it reminds me other Saturday afternoons at the mall with my sister and my mom. This is a very easy vegetarian dish and it is kid friendly! Ron grilled some chicken sausage for his dish, but I had mine plain with a touch of tomato sauce on top. If you haven't had this pasta at Sabarro's you might think I am a little nuts about this pasta, but if you have you know exactly what I am talking about.


2 lbs Ziti
2 lbs Ricotta Cheese
3 Oz Grated Romano Cheese
3 Cups Tomato Sauce (buy a little extra on the side if you wish to top your pasta)
1/2 Teas. Black Pepper
1 1/2 lbs Shredded Mozzarella Cheese|


 Cook Ziti according to package directions until al dente stirring often.
After cooking, drain ziti well, but
do not rinse the pasta!

While Ziti is cooking preheat oven to 350F. Combine
ricotta, romano, tomato sauce (reserve 1/4 cup) and pepper in
large mixing bowl.

Gently combine cooked ziti with sauce mixture.
In a 13″x9″x2″ pan, spread the 1/4 cup reserved sauce.
Add ziti and top with mozzarella cheese. Cover loosely with
aluminum foil and bake until mozzarella is thoroughly melted
(about 20 minutes).  I topped mine with some additional warm tomato sauce.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 4/23 - 4/29

Happy Monday! This weekend was fun. We ushered a play for the first time at the Community Theatre. It was really fun reading the program and seeing what the actors do for their "day jobs". I hope we get a chance to do it again. This week is a pretty simple menu and I am really excited about the ziti! Sabarro's ziti was one of my favorite dishes as a little kid. We are also going to see West Side Story on Thursday (yay!). Hope everyone else has a fun week planned!

Here is what is on tap:

Monday: Sabarro Baked Ziti and salad
Tuesday: Hawaiian Pizza Grilled Cheese Sandwich (this sounds too awesome not to try) and Salad
Wednesday: Leftover Chili
Thursday: Taste of Thai with my mom and Ron. We are going to see West Side Story!
Friday: Work at the Bar
Saturday: Out for Dinner
Sunday: TBA....potentially grilling if the weather is nice.

Breakfast, Treats, and Bites:  Banana Bread

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Skillet Meatballs and Noodles in Creamy Herb Sauce

I have really been in the mood for pasta dishes lately, and I saved this recipe from Sarah's blog A Taste of Home Cooking awhile ago, and figured now was the perfect time to try it out! I loved how easy this recipe was to put together, and hoe delicious it turned out. The sauce is not to heavy, but very savory and full of flavor. We moved into our home in November 2011 and had no idea what the garden was going to offer us in the spring. To my delight fresh chives have popped up in the garden and a rhubarb plant is growing! We are in the process of making our own raised bed garden, but its nice to have a few things right off the bat. I was very pleased to be able to use the chives from our garden in this recipe. It makes me so excited for more summer fruits and veggies!

1 pound ground beef (I used 90% lean)
1 package garlic and herb Boursin cheese
 1 1/2 Tbl olive oil
1 onion, chopped fine
2  tablespoons all purpose flour
3 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
8 ounces egg noodles
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives
Salt and Pepper

Combine beef, 5 tablespoons Boursin cheese, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl and knead gently until combined. Form mixture into 1 inch meatballs. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Cook meatballs until well browned all over, about 5 minutes. Transfer meatballs to plate and pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat from pan.

Cook onion in reserved fat until browned, about 6-8 minutes. Stir in flour and cook until golden, about 1 minute. Add broth, noodles, and wine and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to med-low, and cook, stirring often, until pasta begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add meatballs and simmer, covered, until meatballs are cooked through and noodles are al dente, about 4 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in remaining Boursin cheese and chives. Season with salt and pepper.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Recipe Swap: Paula Deen's Corn Casserole

Another recipe swap is upon us! A big thank you to Sarah author of A Taste of Home Cooking for putting together these great swaps. The theme for this swap was favorite celebrity recipe. I recieved Paula Deen's Corn Casserole from Cooking for Fun.  I was excited to try something new for a side dish from our regular potatoes and veggies. However, I was a little aprehensive because it is different than my usual side dish disires (this is why we try new things right?). I reduced the amount of butter and used light sour cream to try and cut some of the calories from the dish. I thought the end result was very tasty! It almost reminded me macaroni and cheese? I know that sounds a little odd but it really does!  I really like poking around the Cooking for Fun blog because there are all types of delicious recipes (the Harvest Salad and Blueberry Crumb Pie wonderful!).  Check out Sarah's blog to check our swaps and see what is coming next!


1 (15 1/4-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (14 3/4-ounce) can cream-style corn
1 (8-ounce) package corn muffin mix (recommended: Jiffy)
1 cup light sour cream
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
1 cup shredded Cheddar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

 In a large bowl, stir together the corn, corn muffin mix, sour cream, and melted butter. Pour into a greased 9 by 13-inch casserole dish. Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown.

Remove from oven and top with cheddar. Return to oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Let stand for at least 5 minutes and then serve warm

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Improv Cooking Challenge: Peanut Butter and Jelly Grilled Pork Tenderloin

Happy Improv Challenge to you all! Peanut butter and jelly is the theme for this month's challenge, and the possibilities were endless. I wanted to do something more on the savory side for this challenge. In the past I have seen different grill recipes for PB&J chicken or pork. I decided that I wanted to try and come up with a recipe of my own to contribute to the Improv Challenge. The weather in Wisconsin has been remarkable so we have started grilling a lot earlier this year. I created a recipe for grilled PB&J pork tenderloin. I love peanut butter and jelly and the flavors really stood out to me. Ron is not as big of a fan of PB & J, but still thought it was pretty good. When you grill the meat make sure to grill slow and low because the sugar in the peanut butter and jelly can burn easily.  A BIG thank you to Kristen author of Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker for hosting this challenge! Check out my fellow bloggers for more great PB&J combos!

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup jelly (I used grape)
2 tsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp hot sauce
2 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp pepper
1 1/2 lb pork tenderloin

Mix all marinade ingredients together in a small bowl till smooth. Place pork into a plastic bag and add peanut butter and jelly mixture. Allow pork to marinate in the fridge for 1-2 hours flipping every half hour to ensure the pork is evenly coated.

Heat grill to medium-low. Remove pork from bag and place on the grill. Think of the tenderloin as having 4 sides. Cook the pork 4-5 minutes per "side".  Remove from grill and allow the meat to rest for 5 minutes.  Slice and serve.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 4/16 - 4/22

Happy Monday! We had a wonderfully lazy weekend! We also went and saw the move American Reunion- so funny. This week is going to be pretty easy breezy as well. Look out for the recipe swap and improv challenge Thursday and Friday for a few new yummy recipes. Hope everyone has a an awesome week!

Monday: Leftovers! We have a ton from  last week that need to be eaten!
Tuesday: Grilled BBQ Chicken, Paula Dean's Corn Casserole (for recipe swap), Leftover Green Beans
Wednesday: Out for Dinner!
Thursday: Skillet Meatballs and Noodles in Creamy Herb Sauce
Friday: Workin' At the Bar
Saturday: Out for Dinner!
Sunday: Scalloped Potatoes and Ham with Green Beans

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

This week is the Improv Cooking Challenge, and I was playing around with different peanut butter and jelly recipes for our themed challenge (the recipe I picked will be posted on the 19th). These bars are an Ina Garten recipe. They are very easy and very delicious. I love peanut butter and jelly, and these remind me of eating a sandwich. This recipe called for salt chopped peanuts on top, but as I was making the bars I realized I forgot the peanut at the store. I am sure it would have been delicious, but I really didn't miss them. I think this is a great recipe to play around with by using chunky peanut butter and different jelly/jams. I can't wait to bring these to work on Monday to share with my co-workers!


1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups (18 ounces) creamy peanut butter (I used Skippy Creamy Natural)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 cups  (I used strawberry jam)
2/3 cups salted peanuts, coarsely chopped (I did not use this ingredient)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 13 by 2-inch cake pan.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light yellow, about 2 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the vanilla, eggs, and peanut butter and mix until all ingredients are combined.

In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture. Mix just until combined.

Spread 2/3 of the dough into the prepared cake pan and spread over the bottom with a knife or offset spatula. Spread the jam evenly over the dough. Drop small globs of the remaining dough evenly over the jam. Don't worry if all the jam isn't covered; it will spread in the oven.

Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown. Cool and cut into squares.

Friday, April 13, 2012

I Recieved An Award!

I received The Versatile Blogger award from Teri author of the blog The Freshman Cook. This is my first award from another blogger and am just tickled pink that Teri thought of me. Thank you so much Teri!

This is the how the Versatile Blogger award works:
Thank the person who awarded you by linking back to their post (Thank you again Teri!)
Pass the award on to 15 other new or newly discovered blogs
List 7 interesting things about yourself

Here are 7 interesting (I hope!) things about myself:

1. I have a degree in Political Science

2. I actually used this degree for something other than law school. My first "grown-up" job was working for the United States Congress. I worked there for 4 years till my boss lost his re-election bid in 2010.

3. I love horseback riding. I was on the Wisconsin Team in and completed at national shows (we placed Top Ten!), but I haven't ridden since we had to put down my Gilbert in 2009.

4. I live in Green Bay, Wisconsin and love the Packers.... and cheese and beer

5. I am terrified of baking, but do it anyways

6. I am adopted and so happy fate gave me the family it did

7. My husband is my favorite person in world. We had a long road to get where we are, but the journey was worth every minute.

Here are 15 I am passing this award on to:

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Pastel Deviled Eggs

This post is a little late, but I had to share the yummy appetizer Ron and I put together to bring to his parents house. I saw this idea on Pinterest, and knew that I had to try it for Easter. I used my normal deviled egg filling (normally I put paprika on top, but I didn't want it sprinkled on the colored eggs), and it turned out so cute! My nephew loved the colored eggs and gobbled up a blue egg with dinner (I am partial to the pink!). This is an adorable holiday treat that can be adapted depending on the holiday colors. I was actually thinking of a Halloween egg (Orange with black filling) and Ron made a face that looked like I told him we were going to eat beating cat hearts....maybe back to the drawing board with that one...  A wonderful treat for Easter (or Halloween!!!!!!) especially if you have little ones.

12 Hard Boiled Eggs, peeled and cut lengthwise
1/2 cup mayo
1/4 tsp white pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1/8 tsp paprika
Food Coloring

Remove yolks and place into a bowl. Cover and place in the fridge.

Fill four bowls 2/3 full of cold water and add food coloring. I use 4 red drops for pink, 4 drops blue for light blue, 4 drops green for light green, and 3 drops red & 3 drops red for purple. Place 6 egg halves into each bowl. Allow the eggs to soak for one hour, or until eggs are desired color.

Remove eggs from bowls and gently dry and place on a towel lined plate(s).  Remove eggs yolks from fridge and add remaining ingredients. Beat yolks with a hand mixer so they become light and fluffy. Transfer egg yolks to a plastic ziplock bag, and push mixture into the tip. Cut the tip and gently pipe the egg yolk mixture into the egg halves. Wipe bottoms if there is any excess water, transfer to serving tray, and eat.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 4/9 - 4/15

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter holiday! We enjoyed quality family time with the Ron's side of the family. We are also dog sitting for my Mom's dog Bella (they are on vacation this week). We are cat people so it has been an adjustment having a dog, but we are enjoying her. This week is filled with a few old favorites, and a few new things. I was feeling a bit lazy while meal planning, and old comfort dinners sounded perfect. Hope everyone has a great week!

Here is what is on tap:

Monday: Chili (We finished up the freezer leftovers awhile ago and I am craving more chili!)
Tuesday:  White Chicken Enchiladas, Rice &  Beans
Wednesday: Out for Volleyball
Thursday: Tatertot Casserole and Green Beans (I don't care what anyone thinks I love this!)
Friday: Workin' at the Bar
Saturday:  Grilled Brats (Finally!!), Grilled Onions, Grilled Potatoes, Fresh Fruit, and Slow Cooker Baked Beans
Sunday: Dinner with my parents after they return from vacation...I am thinking Spaghetti or maybe stuffed shells...yum!

Breakfast, Treats, and Bites:  Eggs Benedict Casserole, Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Crazy Cooking Challenge: Blueberry-Lemon Yogurt Muffins

Time for another Crazy Cooking Challenge!


The theme for this month's challenge is Blueberry Muffins. I was so excited because blueberry muffins are the only muffins I like (I do not have a big sweet tooth- I prefer cheese), and they are so delicious. I found this recipe Christina's blog Sweet Pea's Kitchen, and have had my eye of it for awhile. The original recipe is for a loaf of bread, but I decided (in the spirt of the challenge) to change it to muffins (I also added more blueberries).  This recipe is super easy and the flavors of the lemon and blueberry are wonderful and refreshing! I am excited to try it as a loaf as well, but there is something great about a muffin. Please check out my fellow bloggers on the hop below for more great blueberry muffin recipes. Also, a BIG thank you to Tina for always putting together such a great swap!


For the Muffins:
1 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (approximately 2 lemons)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen, thawed and rinsed

For the Lemon Syrup:
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar

For the Lemon Glaze:
1 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare 3 muffin tins with liners (recipe makes about 18 muffins). In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla and oil. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. In a separate bowl, mix the blueberries with the remaining tablespoon of flour, and fold them very gently into the batter.
  3. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffins comes out clean. Let cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing muffins to a wire rack on top of a baking sheet.
  4. While the muffins are cooling, make the lemon syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir together the lemon juice and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once dissolved, continue to cook for 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat; set aside.
  5. Use a toothpick to poke holes in the tops of the warm muffins. Brush the top with the lemon syrup.  Let the cake cool completely.
  6. To make the lemon glaze, in a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of the lemon juice. The mixture should be thick but pourable. Add up to another tablespoon of lemon juice if the mixture is too stiff. Drizzle the lemon glaze over the top of each muffin and let it drip down the sides. Let the lemon glaze harden, about 15 minutes, before serving.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Recipe Swap: Rustic Applesauce

Another recipe swap is upon us! The theme for this month is fruit. The recipes could be marinades, sauces, deserts...the list was endless. I submitted my recipe for Grape Salad and recieve Rustic Applesauce from The Dilettante Gourmand. The recipe has not been posted on the blog yet, but is a favorite. I was excited to try an applesauce recipe, and was pleased at how easy this was to put together (minus the whole apple peeling thing). The applesauce is delicious! My husband and I had it for breakfast and will have more for dinner as a little treat. I reduced the amount of vanilla and lemon because I really wanted the apple flavor to stand out. I also omitted the crème fraîche (2 Tbl stirred in at the end in original recipe) because I didn't have any, and I didn't think it needed it. Thanks for a great recipe! Check out more recipe swaps at Sarah's blog A Taste of Home Cooking.


4 cups cubed peeled Braeburn or Pink Lady apple
4 cups cubed peeled Granny Smith apple
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoons grated lemon rind
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2  teaspoon vanilla extract
Dash of salt


Combine all ingredients in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook 25 minutes or until apples are tender, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat; mash to desired consistency with a fork or potato masher. Serve warm or chilled.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Holiday Recipe Club: Spinach Cheddar and Garlic Bread

I discovered a new recipe linky a few weeks ago called Holiday Club. Holiday Recipe Club gives a holiday as inspiration and requires you to work with certain ingredients. The current holiday is Easter/Passover and the ingredients are carrots, spinach, and cheese. The rules state that you must use at least one of the ingredients from the list, and I decided to go with two: eggs and spinach. I found a recipe for spinach cheddar muffins and I knew I found my recipe! After reading the reviews, I made a few changes and added Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, and onion powder. I also turned the muffins into loaves and served them with our dinner. I loved the flavors of this bread! I think the addition of the additional seasonings really helped make the bread more flavorful and savory. The bread is a bit doughy and makes a great loaf, but I think that it is probabl even better as a muffin.  Please visit the Holiday Recipe Club site to join our club or check out the linky below to see what my fellow bloggers came up with!


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, melted
1 egg
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup frozen chopped spinach - thawed, drained and squeezed dry
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 2 medium bread pans.

Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and seasonings together in a mixing bowl.

Stir the melted butter, egg, milk, spinach, Parmesan, and Cheddar cheese together in a large mixing bowl until evenly blended. Slowly stir in the flour mixture to form a batter. Divide batter between both bread pans.

Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of a bread comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Stroganoff Casserole

This casserole is caught my eye on my reader awhile ago, and I keep not having a chance to make it! The recipe comes from Mary Ellen's Cooking Creations (she also participated in the recipe swaps!). I finally decided that this sounded perfect for last night's dinner.  I added a little more cheese, and subbed in gluten freee noodles and gravy mix. The result was wonderful! My husband is allergic to mushrooms (BOO!) so I didnt't add any to the pasta. My Dad goes on a trip to Russia each year and recently went to the place that this dish originated and had a chance to eat there- he said it was very good! Hope everyone is having a fantastic week!


1 lb lean ground beef
1/2 bag egg noodles (I used elbow noodles)
1 small onion, chopped
 2 cloves garlic, minced
 1 package dry brown gravy mix mixed with 1 cup cold water (I use gluten free)
1/4 sharp grated sharp cheddar
2/3 cup grated swiss, divided 
 3-4 tbsp light sour cream
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook noodles, drain, and set aside.
Brown meat and drain.  Add garlic, onions, and red pepper flakes. Saute till meat is cooked completely and onions are soft.
Turn off the heat and mix in the cooked noodles
Add the gravy and mix well. Add the cheese (1/4 cup cheddar and 1/3 cup swiss), sour cream, and mix  until everything is evenly coated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  
Transfer to a baking dish and top with remanining 1/3 cup swiss cheese.  Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes or until casserole is bubbly.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Pimento Cheeseburgers

I love grilling, grilled food, grill marks....the list could go on and on.... I came across this recipe for Pimento Cheeseburgers at Sidewalk Shoes. I have not eaten a lot of pimento cheese spread in Wisconsin (I am told it is more popular in the south?), but I absolutely loved the flavors of this burger with the pimento cheese. The cheese is nice and sharp and the pimentos and mayo give a nice tang when heated on the grill. It is not pictured here, but I topped mine with a few sliced pickles for even more tang! Yum! My husband also went crazy for this burger, and gobbled his up in lightning speed. I like this recipe because it is different than the everyday burger, but still has the yummy cheese to make it a great summer comfort food!


2 lbs ground beef
salt and pepper, to taste

Pimento Cheese
1 cup sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 oz. cream cheese
Salt and cayenne pepper, to taste
1 jar sliced pimentos, drained (2 oz)


Preheat grill to medium high.

In a food processor, combine the cheese, mayo, cream cheese and seasonings, and process until smooth. Add the pimentos and pulse to combine.

Shape the ground beef into 4-6 (depending on how big of a burger you want)  patties and season with salt and pepper.

Grill burgers on an oiled grate for 4 minutes, then flip them over and cook for 2 more minutes. Top with about 1/6 of the pimento cheese and grill for 2 more minutes

Monday, April 2, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 4/2 - 4/8

Happy Monday! We had a lovely 3 days in Indiana with our family to celebrate my Cousin's wedding (I was so happy to get to Shapiro's).  This week is pretty easy, and we are trying a few different recipe (very excited about PBJ pork tenderloin!).  I am hoping to dye some eggs this week and get baskets ready for the kids in our family for Sunday! Have a wonderful week!

Here is what is on tap:

Monday: We are going out for pizza with friends! Yummy!
Tuesday: Stroganoff Casserole and broccoli
Wednesday: Grilled Peanut Butter and Jelly Pork Tenderloin, Baked Potatoes, Green Beans
Thursday: Out to dinner with my Mom to A'Bravo
Friday: Workin' at the Bar
Saturday: Ron will be gone at a Brewer game and I am having Mexican with my friend Amanda
Sunday: Happy Easter! We are feasting on ham with all the fixings with our families!

Breakfast, Treats, and Bites:  Pastel Deviled Eggs, Spinach and Cheddar Muffins (for Holiday Club Challenge), Rustic Apple Sauce (for recipe swap)

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Anthony Bourdain's Roti de Porc au Lait (Roast Pork with Milk)

Have I ever mentioned that I love Anthony Bourdain? I find him to be very amusing and am very jealous of his world travels. I recently finished reading Medium Raw, and was very pleased with the honesty of his book. I enjoy celebrity chefs that don't pretend to be perfect, or always be home to cook every evening.  Anyways, I came across this recipe for Roti de Porc au Lait on the blog Almost Bourdain who originally found the recipe in Bourdain's Las Halles cookbook. This might be the most tender delicious pork roast I have ever eaten. The meat is so tender and the creamy sauce both sweet and savory.  The interesting thing about this recipe is that it all takes place stove top, and we usually assume that roast happens in the oven- not true here.  I served this this mashed potatoes and roasted green beans and it was divine. Perhaps my new favorite way to cook pork, and that says a lot because I love to grill!

3 lb. boneless pork loin roast
salt and pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 leek, white part only, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tbsp. flour
2 cups whole milk (important not to "skim" on this)
1 bouquet garni (1 sprig of flat parsley, 2 sprigs of fresh thyme, and 1 bay leaf, tied together)

Season the pork with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in the Dutch oven. When the oil is hot, add the butter. Brown the roast on all sides, 6 to 7 minutes total. Remove the roast from the pan and set aside on the large plate. Add the onion, carrot, leek, and garlic and stir over high heat until soft and caramelized, about 10 minutes. Stirring constantly, add the flour and cook for 2 minutes, then add milk and the bouquet garni. Bring to a boil and cook over high heat for 5 minutes. Add the pork and any juices that have collected on the plate. Reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat for 1 hour, making sure to periodically rotate the pork (the sugars in the milk can cause sticking and scorching). Remove the pork and allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Finish the sauce and serve
Remove and discard the bouquet garni. Strain the cooking liquid into a small pot and bring to a boil. Using a hand blender, purée the sauce until foamy. Adjust the seasoning as needed. Carve the pork and arrange on a serving platter. Spoon the sauce over and around and serve immediately.