Friday, September 28, 2012

so nice i am posting twice.. easy anti pasta kabaobs

with everyone having football parties.. i thought these quick and easy kabobs should be shared again.. they are so simple, yet they look like a million bucks!! so for your next party i suggest offering these.. you won't be disappointed nor will your guests..

prep time: 30 minutes
servings: 30 skewers

1 9oz. package of cheese tortellini (i used buitoni), cooked to package directions
30 or so olives (i had three different kinds.. blue cheese stuffed, red pepper stuffed and almond stuffed)
30 slices of salami
30 slices of deli pepperoni (it's larger than the normal kind)
1-2 jars of marinated artichoke hearts (reserve the oil they're packed in)
30 small skewers

once your tortellini is cooked and drained rinse them with cold water.. and either return to your same pot you cooked them in or in a bowl.. i then just poured the oil from the artichoke hearts over the them and tossed them around a bit.. (careful not to break any) then i skewered everything.. i took a slice of salami, then a tortellini, artichoke heart, pepperoni and then olive.. or you can do it in any order you want.. i placed them on my serving tray covered with plastic wrap and kept in the fridge for a few hours before serving!! simple.. elegant.. tasty.. three of my favorite things..

Thursday, September 27, 2012

cheesy baked avocado

first off let me apologize for the quality of photo :( it's getting dark early now a days.. but i will update the photo this weekend as i am definitely making this again!! i've mentioned before i can't eat avocados, i love them but sadly they make my throat itch and close up.. but shell and pete love them so i do use them this is one of those recipes when you make it you think why in the world have i never done this before!! i made it as a side dish to my pork tenderloin last night but it would be perfect as a light summer dinner or pete suggested maybe filling the center with shrimp or crab once it comes out of the oven.. i was inspired for this dish by this recipe here.. i changed mine up a bit to suit pete and shell's taste buds!! but it's so simple and i have to admit i sneaked a bite or two and it was so creamy and cheesy and good.. *sigh*

cheesy baked avocado

prep time: 5 minutes
cooking time: 10 minutes
servings: 2


1 avocado
1/2 tblsp. balsamic vinegar
juice of 1/2 a lime
1/2 cup parmesan cheese

pre heat your oven to 500 degrees (f) slice avocado in half and remove the stone.. i scored the flesh in a criss-cross pattern with my knife.. then place on a lined baking sheet or casserole dish.. then drizzle the balsamic vinegar over each half.. then topped with the lime juice and salt.. in the cavity where the stone once was fill with cheese and then sprinkle the remaining cheese over the outer flesh part.. place in oven and cook for about 10 minutes checking on it making sure your cheese is melting and not burning.. once it's melted and started to brown up you can stick in the broiler for 1-2 minutes to get it nice and brown... serve with an extra lime wedge.. the possibilities are endless.. i will post some variations this weekend after i play with it a bit.. maybe different cheeses.. maybe a spicy one.. i like pete's idea so maybe i'll fill it with fresh steamed bay shrimp.. i'll let you know and if you try it let me know how you liked yours!!  

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

quick and easy beef stir fry

sorry these pictures are horrible.. it's starting to get dark earlier and earlier.. *sigh* so my photo's will stink.. but this was sooooooooo good i wanted to share with you.. i hadn't planned on making this i was going to grill my flank steak.. unfortunately we were out of propane and well i had to improvise.. and this was what i came up with with what was in my fridge.. and i am so glad i did.. we all loved it..

beef stir fry

prep time: 15 minutes
cooking time: 20 minutes
servings: 4


1 lb. flank steak, cut into thin strips
2 tblsp. hoisin sauce
1/2 tblsp. honey
1 tblsp. soy sauce
1 tblsp. red wine vinegar
1 tblsp. rice wine vinegar
2 tsp. chili sauce (such as sambal oelek)
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground garlic powder
1 tsp. white pepper
1 red/yellow/orange or green pepper, sliced
1/2 an onion, sliced
8 oz. fresh snow peas, sliced at an angle
3 scallions, cut at an angle white and green part

sesame oil
rice noodles, cooked according to package direction
crushed red pepper

in a medium bowl whisk together hoisin, honey, soy, red and rice vinegar, chili sauce, ginger, garlic and pepper add sliced meat.. set aside.. in a large wok heat two twirls around the pan of sesame oil over high heat.. add meat to the hot pan.. making sure all sides are cooked and getting carmelized.. (you might have to do this in batches depending on the size of your wok or pan) about 3-4 minutes on each side.. remove meat to a plate and set aside.. now add snow peas, onion, pepper and scallions to the pan.. cook on high for about 2 to 3 minutes..making sure to stir often.. add meat back and any juice that has collected on the plate along with any remaining marinade in the mixing bowl..stir every thing together and cook another 30 seconds.. drop to simmer and allow to cook another 10 minutes or so.. meanwhile make your rice noodles according to package directions.. what i did is put some rice noodles down.. tossed them in a little spicy red chili oil.. added my meat and veggies over the top.. added some cilantro and to mine a little red chili flakes and a dash of sriracha..

Monday, September 24, 2012

quick and easy hamburger hash...

so pete wakes up and asks what's for breakfast.. and my reply.. umm i have no idea.. he says then let's go out to breakfast.. *sigh* i know most people would be thrilled to hear that but i honestly hadn't planned on getting out of pj's or doing my hair.. staying home in my pj's with my hair piled on my head watching movies and reading magazines was kinda my plan.. so i quickly say ohh i was going to make hamburger hash.. *whew* now i don't have to get dressed.. i "heart" sundays like that!!! and this is one of the easiest breakfasts ever!!

hamburger hash

prep time: 15 minutes
cooking time: 20 minutes
servings: 4


2 white potatoes, cubed
1/2 an onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 lb. ground beef
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
salt and pepper
olive oil
8 eggs

diced up your potatoes.. heat two twirls around with olive oil in a large saute skillet over medium high heat.. add potatoes and cook for about 5 minutes.. making sure to stir often.. then add your onions and red pepper.. cook additional 5 minutes.. you want them tender.. while they are cooking in another pan cook your hamburger until no longer pink.. drain and add to potatoes after they've been cooking for about 10-15 minutes.. add crushed red pepper, salt and pepper.. drop the temp to low/simmer and cover and let cook for another 7-10 minutes.. basically while your cooking your eggs.. i made sunny side up and plopped them on top.. a few dashes of tobasco or sriracha.. and viola breakfast.. no muss no fuss and you don't have to get out of your pj's or comb your hair to enjoy it!!


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

lamb sliders with a sweet 'n spicy red pepper relish

these little guys were sooooooo ahamazing good.. i saw on triple d this recipe here.. and knew i wanted to make something like it.. about once or twice a month pete's parents come over for "happy hour" at our house.. i make up appetizers and we sit and chat.. even though they only live a few miles away finding time to see them doesn't always work out.. they came over last month and we had oysters, smoked salmon, pickled herring.. (yes i took pictures but then decided to save you all the funkyness that it was, you see i let pete pick out the food that happy hour..) well this time it was my turn to pick up the apps.. so i went to smiths again and walked the dreaded olive bar.. you might remember my last 15.00 adventure with the olive bar.. that tale told here.. i really tried not to get suckered in and for the most part i think i did ok.. i got marinated mozzarella balls, spicy olive and veggie mix and roasted garlic.. i then got salami, pepperoni and horseradish cheese (talk about spicy and yum augh so good).. i got flavored olive oil for dipping and made mini bruschetta, my recipe for regular bruschetta can be found here.. and last but not least we had these mini lamb sliders topped with a spicy sweet red pepper relish.. simply devine.. seriously a wonderful way to spend a lazy sunday afternoon.. sipping on wine (in my case beer) and noshing on little cute apps.. lovely..

sweet and spicy red pepper relish

1 red pepper,diced small
1 jalapeno, diced small
1/4 of an onion, diced small
2 garlic cloves minced
olive oil
1 tblsp. cider vinegar
1 tblsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. dry mustard

lamb slider:

1 lb. ground beef 80/20
1 lb. ground lamb (pete said next time he wants 1.5 lbs of lamb and only .5 lb of ground beef)
1 small red pepper, diced
5 mint leaves, chopped
1/4 of an onio, diced
1/4 tsp. each of the following spices allspice, coriander, ground cumin and black pepper
pinch of cayenne

slider buns
olive oil

for relish: cook the pepper, onion and garlic in a small sauce pot over medium heat until soft..about 2 minutes or so..  add vinegar, sugar and mustard... lower heat and cook until all the ingredients are cooked down and become thick enough to top the burgers.. about 15 minutes..

for the sliders:  mix beef, lamb, bell peppers, mint, onion and spices...form into slider patties you can get about 16 of them..cook burgers to your liking in a skillet or grill.. i did used my grill and cooked them over medium low heat.. it took about 10-15 minutes.. i then took my buns brushed them with olive oil and toasted them on the grill too for a few seconds.. remove the buns then added the slider then top with a little sweet n spicy relish.. talk about flavorful!! really good.. if you haven't cooked with ground lamb before this is perfect recipe to start with.. now get to cook'in!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

loaded breakfast nachos..

it seems kinda silly giving you a recipe for nachos.. i am sure everyone at some point or another has made some form of nachos.. they are the easiest and yummiest snack food.. and this version is no different.. it's so simple.. you take your chips lay them down on a lined baking sheet or in a casserole dish.. top with cheese, refried beans, a little more cheese and bake in the oven at 350 for about 7-10 minutes.. then i topped mine with 2 fried eggs, pico de gallo, avocado, hot sauce and sour cream.. it was sooooooooo good.. hit the spot on sunday morning!!  i opted for sunny side up eggs, cause well i absolutely love when the yolk gets on whatever it is you have put it on top of!! this would be ahhhmazing hang over food!! NOT that i get hangovers just say'in!!!


bag of corn tortilla chips (i like the baked kind)
cheese, i used low fat 2% sargento mexican cheese
re-fried beans, you can use canned or below is how i make mine.. (i don't use canned they are so easy to make)
pico de gallo or salsa, i like fresh pico, my recipe below
avacado, diced
low fat sour cream
hot sauce, i like to use pico pica but sriracha would be good too..
eggs, cooked any way you like, sunny side up, over easy.. or even scrambled.. it's your choice.. i prefer the sunny side up.. but you might not..

pre heat oven to 400 degrees (f).. line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.. layer your corn chips on the pan.. (if you making it for more than one or 2 people make separate piles of the nachos on the baking sheet) sprinkle cheese, spoon your beans, a little more cheese.. place in oven and warm until cheese is melty.. while that's in the oven cook your eggs how you like them.. remove baking sheet top the nachos with your eggs, pico de gallo, avocado, hot sauce and a dollop of sour cream..

refried beans

1 can of pinto beans (we like sun vista)
1 slice of bacon cut into lardons (if you want to go really healthy omit the bacon)

cut up your bacon and cook in an iron skillet until tender but not crispy.. add pinto beans juice and all.. simmer over medium low until most of the liquid is evaporated.. about 30-45 minutes.. depends on how high you have your heat... but about 10 minutes before you think they are done mash with a potato masher.. don't let them get dried out.. while your beans are cooking make your pico de gallo..


 pico de gallo


1 tomato, diced
1/2 an onion, diced
1/4 bunch cilantro, chopped
juice of 1/2 a lemon
salt to taste

combine everything above and chill before serving..

Friday, September 14, 2012

creamy potato and leek soup..

when we picked up our bountiful basket last saturday there were these great leeks in it.. so pete says dang (yeah he didn't say dang but since this is a family friendly site we'll go with dang) those are big scallions.. i said they aren't scallions they are leeks and then explained to him what a leek was and what you could cook with one.. well he was so impressed he now knew this, at least i guess he was impressed with his new found knowledge, because he then proceeded to tell everyone we saw that weekend about the "dang" leeks.. hey jess ever seen a leek before? jess: no.. well they are these big blah blah blah.. and aunt robin made the best soup i've ever had blah blah.. hey dean ever hear of a leek before.. hey jimmy.. hey dad and so on and so forth.. so i am going to say he liked the soup.. and i will be requested to cook with leeks more often..

in our basket was also several potatoes so it was basically telling you to make potato and leek soup.. which is what i did.. hey when the bountiful basket gods tell you do something i suggest you follow their heed..

and much to my surprise it came out creamy, thick and hearty even though i used non fat plain yogurt, 2% milk and sour cream as my "cream".. definitely will make it into the menu rotation this fall/winter.. i googled potato and leek soup and found so many recipes with them all basically saying the same thing i really can't credit one recipe or even two for my version.. its a mish mosh of several..

creamy potato & leek soup

prep time: 20 minutes
cooking time: 1 hour
servings: 4


2 tblsp. butter
3 leeks, thinly sliced and cleaned*
1 medium onion, diced
5 white new potatoes, cleaned and scrubbed then diced (i never peel my potatoes just as an fyi)
3 1/2 cups chicken broth, basically you want enough to cover the potatoes
1/2 cup non fat plain greek yogurt
1/4 cup low fat sour cream
1/3 cup 2% milk
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
sour cream and chives as garnish (optional)

melt butter in a large dutch oven over medium heat.. add onions and leeks.. cook and stir frequently until  the veggies are soft.. about 10 minutes.. add your potatoes to the pot then add enough chicken broth to barely cover them.. continue cooking over medium heat until potatoes are tender..i used an immersion blender at this point and basically blended it still leaving some potato chunks (but you can use a regular blender or even a potato masher to get it to the desired consistency you want..) turn down the heat and keep stirring so it doesn't burn.. i then added the yogurt, sour cream and milk, salt and pepper.. and whisked .. then let it simmer on low for about 20 minutes.. if you think it needs to be thicker by all means add more yogurt or sour cream... once everything is heated through and smelling yummy then ladle up the soup into bowls garnish with a dollop of sour cream and chopped chives and serve with toasted bread..seriously folks this stuff is good!!

* make sure to clean your leeks thoroughly.. and slice only the white and light part of the green.. once they were sliced i added them to cold water swished them around a bit let all the dirt and debris fall to the bottom of the bowl then with my hand pulled them out and added them to a colander to drain..

Thursday, September 13, 2012

roast beef 1000 grilled sammy..

i was watching diners drive ins and dives last week and saw a show about a sandwich called cutty's roast beef 1000 in small sandwich shop in boston.. their website here...the recipe from food net work is here.. it's actually a little different than the show... the show had a spice mixture that looked awesome.. so i ended using the recipe from the show and not from their website.. i also changed it up because i had different bread and i wanted it grilled.. :) but let me tell you this sandwich was fantastic.. and i was inspired for my 1000 island dressing recipe from martha herself.. recipe found here.. it was so fricking good i kept dipping the meat in the dressing i couldn't help also called for crispy shallots.. ohh lawdy.. have you had those?? no? well get on it.. they are amazing!!! your supposed to let the meat sit over night with the spice mixture on it.. so plan accordingly..

i think this meat alone not on a sandwich with the spices that are rubbed on it would be great as a dinner.. the recipes calls for a beef chuck roll roast and well i couldn't find that so i got a beef chuck loin roast and i think it worked out perfect..

and the written recipe calls for just kosher salt but he made a salt based spice blend on the show with pepper corns, cloves, pink pepper corns, bay leaves and nutmeg.. it was fantastic..  i tried to duplicate the spice blend and turned out very good.. i also added a few spices i thought would be good too.. those measurements won't be exact because i basically just watched the show and threw it all in my spice grinder.. i didn't measure anything :( sorry..

roast beef 1000 with crispy shallots

prep time: 30 minutes
cook time: 2 hours
servings: 4 sandwich with left over meat.. :)

6 medium shallots, sliced thin and dried on a paper towel
2 cups vegi oil (i thought this was excessive and did not use that much i think might have used 1/2 or even less)
5 lb. whole beef chuck loin roast
spice mixture (recipe below)

thousand island dressing (recipe below)

buns or sandwich bread ( i used sour dough)
8 slices of cheese, i used mozzarella
butter  (room temperature)

place shallots in oil in a small sauce pot and cook over high heat until oil starts to bubble.. reduce heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring frequently and adjusting heat to maintain steady stream of bubbles.. cook until shallots are a rust colored, about 15 minutes.. (pay attention i burned my first batch :( )remove shallots and place on a paper towel lined plate..separate shallots with a fork and season with salt.. allow to cool completely.. you will have more than needed for the sandwiches so whats left over store in a tight sealed container.. (they are great on burgers or with eggs or so many other things.. they are yummy)

season beef with your spice mixture all over.. i put mine in a casserole dish like above and wrapped it with plastic wrap and kept int he fridge over night.. the next day remove your beef from the fridge and  preheat your oven to 475 degrees (f).. bring your meat up to room temperature.. remove plastic wrap and place in oven and cook until lightly brown about 30 minutes.. flip roast over and drop the temperature to 300 and continue roasting until you get an internal temp. of 135 degrees.. about 45 minutes.. remove from oven.. allow it to rest for about 45 minutes then slice thinly.. to make your grilled cheese.. heat a scosh of butter in a medium saute pan over medium heat.. then completely butter one side of your bread, place that one slice butter side down into the pan.. add 1 slice of cheese your roast beef, your thousand island dressing, crispy shallots, 1 more slice of cheese and top with the remaining slice of bread.. butter the side up facing you.. turn heat down to medium low and cover and cook until golden brown on that side that's down.. about 2-3 minutes.. flip, cover and cook until golden brown on the other side about 2-3 minutes.. remove from pan allow to cool about 1 minute.. cut in half and devour!!!! omg this sandwich was sooo good!!

to make the spices i added to my spice grinder, black peppercorns, pink peppercorns, white pepper corns, onion flakes, about 4 bay leaves, dehydrated garlic flakes, crushed red pepper and ground nut meg grounded it all up and added it to a bowl with salt in it about a tblsp. of salt and mixed it around.. (sorry not more precise the recipe on the food network just calls for salt if your leery about making your own spice mixture just use basic salt and pepper)

spicy thousand island dressing:

makes about 3/4 of a cup so you will have left overs.. i used it on my salad the next day for lunch..


1/2 cup of mayo
2 tblsp. ketchup
1 tsp. of sambal oelek (asian hot chili paste) i used more than a tsp. and it was fantastic
2 tblsp. sweet pickle relish
2 tsp. horseradish
2 tsp. coarsely chopped green olives with pimentos
salt and pepper

whisk together everything in a medium/small mixing bowl.. cover and put in the fridge until ready to use..

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

take my word for it wednesday.. my home town sure can flood..

it's take my word for wednesday..  where for whatever i reason i have to ask you to take my for it about how great the meal was or something else i am babbling about.. and today is no different.. i had every intention of taking photos of my amazing 2 inch thick rib eyes i cooked on the grill.. and even my fresh green beans i steamed then sauteed with bacon and tomatoes.. and especially my small purple potatoes i roasted with olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic.. but the weather had other plans.. you see it rained yesterday.. it started and would not stop.. the following pictures were not taken by me they are from a local news station.. it's just a little hint of why i didn't take pictures.. i did however cook the meal so i will tell you about it.. he he :)

I believe this the parking structure by the regional justice center.. which had be closed yesterday.

 this is the unlv parking lot... luckily jake parked in the other lot yesterday... leave it to college students to enjoy the flooding...

this is a women being rescued from her car when it was over taken by water and she was taking shelter on the roof of it.. 30 people had to be rescued.. what it weird is this rain hit us hard and fast and didn't stop and when it finally did everything was under water..

the other unlv parking lot!!

so when i got home it was sooo over cast and not sunny that any attempt to take photos of the dishes would have been futile!!

but i took my 2 inch rib eyes.. brushed them olive oil.. then sprinkled them with garlic powder, onion powder, fresh ground pepper and sea salt.. let them sit for about a 1/2 an hour before adding them to a medium high grill.. i put them on when  it was high let them sit there for about 30 seconds get a nice sear then dropped the temp to medium and cooked each side about 7 minutes per.. they came out perfect... (they were pretty thick and i like my steak pretty rare so cook it to your liking) when you remove your steaks let them sit about 6-8 minutes before cutting into them you want the juices to redistribute back into the meat..

for the potatoes they were little ones smaller than a golf ball i washed and scrubbed them then drizzled them in olive oil and tossed them with fresh minced garlic (about 4 cloves) and fresh ground pepper and sea salt.. i put them in a casserole dish in a single layer and cooked them on 350 degrees (f) for about 45-60 minutes.. about every 20 minutes i took them out and moved them around with my spoon so the bottoms wouldn't burn..

for my green beans i bought a bag of them in the produce department they come already in a microwavable bag.. i zapped them for 3 minutes.. in the interim i took 2 pieces of bacon cut them into small lardons and cooked them down in a saute pan over medium heat until cooked but not crispy.. then i added my cooked green beans to the pan with bacon.. (be careful they spit when you add the green beans) then tossed them around for about 2 minutes then i added a can of diced tomatoes, salt and plenty of pepper.. i also added a healthy dose of crushed red pepper.. tossed it around again dropped the heat to simmer and just let them mingle and cook for about 20 minutes.. 

i hope you get to try these recipes and not worry that there aren't photos take my word for it they were delish!!! 


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

simple bruschetta

i just loved the movie julie and julia... (i might have mentioned that before) and one of my all time favorite scenes is in the beginning when julie is making bruschetta for their dinner..every time i see it i drool..  that could also be from watching chris messina eating the bruschetta but let's not get picky on what was drool worthy in that movie.. a lot of it was.. i had never had bruschetta before watching this movie and i can tell you i had it that night.. i went and bought the ingredients and made it.. it was so delicious.. who knew with a few simple ingredients you could create such an amazing appetizer.. now i would be perfectly happy making this as my dinner.. however pete would not be as happy and content as i with that choice..

i  like to make it when we are having pasta in lieu of a salad.. and i will mix up the tomatoes with what looks good at the market that week.. this time they had a container of little yellow heirloom tomatoes and i when i saw them i knew i would be having bruschetta that week...

simple bruschetta

prep time:  10 minutes
cooking time: 15 minutes
serving: 2

4 slices of bread.. I used sour dough but my favorite is ciabatta
12-14 oz. of assorted heirloom tomatoes, i used yellow cherry this night but i love when i mix the red and the yellow
extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic, peeled and halved
salt and pepper
drizzle of balsamic
chopped fresh basil

pre heat your oven to 400 degrees (f).. in a medium mixing bowl toss your tomatoes with about 1/2 tblsp. olive, salt and pepper and set aside.. take your bread and brush with olive on both sides.. place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 7 minutes an remove from oven and flip the bread slices in half and bake another 5-7 minutes.. you want it a light golden brown.. remove from oven and take the half of garlic and rub it all over one side of the bread.. the roughness from the crispy bread is like a grater to the garlic and it's amazing the results.. the best garlic bread around.. now spoon tomatoes over bread, drizzle with a little (very little you don't want it soggy) of balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with your basil... I usually pile on more tomatoes but for the photo that seemed over whelming but just know you can't have to many tomatoes on it!!

Monday, September 10, 2012

sunday brunch.. lightened up baked french toast with a white plum syrup..

i got my bountiful basket on saturday and in it where white plums!! they looked so delicious.. shell immediately ate one and said they were amazing but sadly the other 3 in the basket were kind of "squishy" so rather than  get rid of them i decided to make baked french toast with a white plum syrup...

i had some left over hot dog bugs from our labor day bbq and i decided to use them up.. ohh my it was sooo good.. i think it might have been the best baked french toast aka bread pudding i've ever made..

see that syrup right there it came out dark because i only had dark agave nectar but if you had the light one it would have been much lighter.. i added lemon zest and some lemon juice and i believe that is what put this over the top!! it really was yummy.. i even tried to lighten it up.. i adapted my recipe from this one here... hers looks fantastic too.. i only made a small one just to test it.. but believe me it will be making an appearance at my next brunch/party...

lightened up baked french toast with a white plum syrup

prep time: 20 minutes
cooking time: 40 minutes
servings: 4

1/4 cup unpacked brown sugar
1 tblsp. water
1 white plum diced small (or any fruit will do)
cooking spray
5 hot dog buns, torn into pieces
1 egg
3/4 cup 2 % milk
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
powdered sugar (for garnish)


2 white plums, diced small
1 tblsp. agave nectar
1 tblsp. orange juice
1/4 tsp. all spice
the juice and zest from 1/2  a lemon

preheat your oven to 350 degrees (f).. in a small saucepan melt brown sugar, plums and water over medium low heat, stirring, until smooth and melted.. about 1 minute.. set aside.. take a small casserole dish and coat with cooking spray.. take your ripped up hot dog buns and fill your casserole dish.. pour brown sugar mixture over and stir incorporate.. in a medium mixing bowl whisk together your egg, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and salt until well combined.. then pour evenly over bread.. bake uncovered for 40-50 minutes or until it's a a pale golden color...  while its cooking in a small sauce pan (or same one I just used the same one from before) combine plums, agave, orange juice, all spice and lemon juice and zest over medium/low heat.. cook for about 1 minute then drop the temperature to simmer and cook for about 15 minutes.. it will get thick and syrupy and the plums will get soft and start to break down.. remove casserole dish from oven when french toast is done and serve.. sprinkle with powdered sugar and a spoon full of the syrup...

Thursday, September 6, 2012

slow cooker bbq pulled pork...

ok this is two slow cooker meals in 2 weeks.. your probably wondering what is wrong with me.. have i gone over to the dark side.. am i now a lover of the illustrious crock pot.. that would have to be a negatory there whiskey fox trot!! but i do love it's convenience.. and the family does like the results of the food cooked in a crock pot and pulled pork is actually one of the only things i will eat that has been cooked in one.... but in an effort to expand my culinary pallet and to be more open minded i will be making more meals in the crock pot this fall/winter.. or it could be that i get up at 4:30 in the morning and go the gym on tuesday and thursdays.. then when i get home i get shell off to school i'll clean the kitchen and what not before i have to leave for work at 7:45 and sooo on those days it's super simple to throw dinner in the crock pot so when i get home at 6 and i don't have much to do but throw together a few things and dinner is ready.. but let's go with i am expanding my horizons because the other just makes me sound lazy.. ha ha :)

now i will admit this is really good.. the bbq sauce gets sweet and thick (with a kick from tobasco) cooking in the crock pot.. the pork is perfectly seasoned.. i do love me some bbq pork..

there are so many ways to eat it.. you can put it on a bun.. add cole slaw, onion and a pickle.. my favorite.. or on white bread.. or straight out of a bowl..(pete's choice) or make a taco, burrito, nachos or egg rolls.. tomorrow i will show you what i did with the left overs.. the possibilities are endless!!!

i went old school.. no frills on this bbq pork this time..

slow cooked bbq pulled pork

prep time: 10 minutes
cooking time: 8-9 hours
servings: 10


8-10 lbs. pork roast/butt
bbq rub (recipe to follow)
3 apples, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 bottle of your favorite bbq sauce

add to the bottom of the crock pot your onions and apples... rub your spices all over the pork and place it on top of the onions with the fat cap up.... cook on low for 7-8 hours... after about 6 hours baste the top of the roast with the juices in the crock pot.. after about 8 hours remove your roast from the crock pot and put in a large bowl, discard all the juices, apples and onions.. with 2 forks shreds your pork (you will want to discard the fat and any other fat you see and if there is a bone that too) and then put back in the crock pot add your bbq sauce and several dashes of tobasco, combine and turn to low for another hour or so.. serve on buns with extra sauce and a crisp slice of purple onion or cole slaw.. or anyway you like it..

spice rub:

1/2 tbls. chili powder
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. cayenne
1/2 tbls. smokey paprika
2 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. salt
mix all together and rub all over your pork tenderloin any left overs keep in an air tight container but you shouldn't have any..

take my word for it wednesday.. jax is a month old!!

OoOoOPs this was supposed to post yesterday.. sorry..

i have mentioned maybe once before (he he) that we have a new little guy that joined the family recently!! jaxton dean renholm.. well he turned a month last week and we had to  celebrate this auspicious occasion by having an impromptu bbq!!! here is aunt carey holding him...

joining the gang by sitting by the fire pit (which was not lit because it's still to warm.. wait a month it will be lit every weekend)

the doggies enjoying their play time..

teo pete loving on the this little guy..

pete actually giggled.. he is a big guy to be giggling!!

daddy showing off his adorable son!!

favorite spot in momma's arms!!

let's hear it.. burrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp

we grilled burgers, italian sausage burgers, hot dogs, i made baked beans.. macaroni salad and we had chips.. the kids loved it!!!

we put uncle paulie in charge of the grill this time!! every thing was wonderful!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY JAX!!!! 1 month old!!!!