Tuna Tetrazini

Yes, I can be a boring cook and take the easy way out. My son likes Tuna Helper, so tonight I made Tuna Tetrazini.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOnce again, the McCormick’s Grill Mates Pork Rub comes to the rescue!

Ingredients
2-3 pound pork shoulder
canola oil, as needed
McCormick’s Grill Mates Pork Rub, to taste
1 cup water
Barbeque sauce, to taste

Directions
Place the pork shoulder into a big enough plastic container; you’ll need the lid, too.

Rub canola oil over the pork shoulder, both sides. You won’t need a lot, just a bit so that it will help the rub stick to the meat.

Now comes the fun part! Pour some pork rub onto one side of the pork shoulder; massage the rub in. Note: unless you use food-grade plastic gloves, your hand will look like this:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou’ll need to wash your hands after handling raw meat, so it’s really no biggie. Rub a nice coating onto the pork shoulder.

Turn the pork over and repeat. Here’s my pork shoulder, after its massage. It looks pretty happy, doesn’t it?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACover the container and allow it to marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

In the morning, take out your slow cooker! Pour the water into the slow cooker. Now add the meat. My pork shoulder didn’t quite fit into my small cooker, so I cut it in half and added it to the slow cooker in two layers.

Set slow cooker on HIGH and cook for four hours; remove the meat and flip the meat layers (put the half that was on the top, on the bottom first so it can cook in the juices; put the bottom half on top). Cook for four more hours on LOW.

After the eight hours have passed, turn off the slow cooker and carefully lift the two pieces of meat out into a bowl. My pork shoulder was already falling apart at this stage, which made me very happy!

Using two forks, shred the meat. Taste it and make sure it’s incredible…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWhen you have finished shredding the pork, it’s time to add some barbeque sauce. We love Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbeque Sauce. Add as little or as much as you like.  Serve on buns, with the barbeque sauce available for those who like drippy sandwiches (like my son).OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Rib Eye Steaks, Restaurant Style

I am in LOVE! The original recipe is at Amuse Bouche.

Ingredients
2 rib eye steaks (6 ounces each)
salt and pepper
1/2 stick of butter
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. butter

Directions
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Salt and pepper the steaks. Place the butter and olive oil in a cast iron skillet and melt on HIGH heat. When the oil and butter are really, really HOT, add the steaks and sear on one side for three minutes – you’ll want a nice crusty brown steak. As the steaks brown, use a spoon and drizzling the pan drippings onto the steaks. Turn and sear other side.  Drizzle with pan drippings.

Whew! Are you drooling yet?

Place the cast iron skillet into the hot oven; After five minutes, add one tbsp. butter to the top of each steak and continue the cooking process for another three to four minutes to get a nice medium rare steak. Of course, this time may vary upon how thick your steaks are. We like our steaks rare! Use your meat thermometer to check the inside temperature of each steak. The temperature of a medium-rare steak will be 165 degrees F.

Remove the cast iron skillet and steaks from the oven; place steaks on serving plate and cover with foil. Let them rest for five minutes.

We like ours with baked potatoes and a veggie. Don’t they look luscious?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThey were!

 

Playing Catch-Up

I’ve got photos to upload, recipes to post…I hope to be able to get caught up tomorrow.

 

Pork Chops, Rubbed the Right Way

Pork chops are another easy supper.  My favorite way to make them is with McCormick’s Grill Mates Pork Rub.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is for two pork chops; my son and I just each one chop each. The preparation of the chops is very easy.

Ingredients

2 pork chops

2 tsp. canola oil

McCormick’s Grill Mates Pork Rub (to taste)

1/4 cup flour

1 tbsp. canola oil

1/4 cup water

Directions

Take the pork chops and pour 1 tsp. canola oil on the top of both chops; rub the oil into the meat. Then, turn them over and pour the another teaspoon onto the chops and rub that in.

My son loves this pork rub, so for his chop, I will take 1 tbsp. of the rub and massage the rub into one side of the chop. Another 1 tbsp. of rub goes on the other side of the chop. For my chop, I just use maybe 1 tsp. of rub for each side of my chop. Depending on how spicy you like your chops, you can add more or less.

For this meal, I tried something different and dipped the chops in flour after rubbing the seasoning in.

Pour in the 1 tbsp. canola oil into a medium-sized skillet. Turn on medium high and when the oil starts to shimmer, add the chops. Cook on one side for 4 minutes or until the chops are browned; flip them and let the other sides get nice and browned (4 more minutes).

Pour in 1/4 cup water, turn the heat to medium and cover. Let the chops cook for ten minutes; flip them and cook for another ten minutes. Uncover and turn the heat up to medium high again and let the chops sizzle and the water evaporate.

Always, always, always use a meat thermometer! Pork chops should register at 180 degrees F. What I like to do is check their temp and if they’re not quite at 180 F but they’re within five degrees, is remove from heat and cover with foil for five minutes. Meat continues to cook after its removed from the heat source. Before serving, check with meat thermometer again and make sure it’s 180 F.

Your temperatures may vary with your own meat thermometer, thickness of the chops and how hot your stove is. I have a brand new stove and I’m still learning to watch temperatures and when meat is at the proper serving temperature.pork chop plate 1-14-15I didn’t like the way the breading worked on the chops. When I added the water, the breading pretty much fell apart. Next time, I won’t bread them and will just use the rub!

 

Quick Breakfast Treats

I love breakfast. If possible, I’d have breakfast three times a day. Here are a few of my little creations – very quick to make and very delicious!

Bagel with cream cheese, topped with strawberries:strawberry cream cheese bagelBagel with cream cheese, topped with blueberries:blueberry cream cheese bagelRicotta cheese with strawberries:ricotta with strawberriesStrawberries:  slice up the strawberries, tuck about 1/2 cup in a plastic quart bag; add a teaspoon of sugar. After all of the strawberries are sliced and sugared in their plastic quart bags, place all of the bags into a one gallon freezer bag and place into freezer. When you want to eat strawberries the next morning, simply take out a quart bag and put it into the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, they’ll be juicy and sweet and ready to eat.

Blueberries:  tuck about 1/2 cup of blueberries into plastic quart bags; take all of the quart bags and place them into a gallon size plastic bag. Tuck the bag into the freezer. Thaw the same as the strawberries. Something I like to do is eat the blueberries frozen. There’s something about the way they crackle and split open when you eat them frozen on top of a bagel. Yum!

A1 Roast

Last night for supper, I made a roast.  Thank goodness for a slow cooker!  I used Reynolds Slow Cooker Liners for the first time and really love the way they made clean-up so quick and easy!

My teen son loves to eat this particular roast.  Here’s the recipe from A1 and then I’ll tell you what I did differently.

Ingredients
1/2 cup A.1. Original Sauce
1/2 cup  water
1 pkg. (0.9 oz.)onion-mushroom soup mix
1 boneless beef chuck eye roast (2-1/2 lb.)
1 lb. red potatoes
1 lb. baby carrots
1 onion, thickly sliced

OK, here’s what I used:

Ingredients
1 cup A1 sauce
1/2 cup water
1 boneless rump roast (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 tbsp. onion powder
1 large russet potato

Directions
Insert the slow cooker liner into the slow cooker, leaving the edges out of the cooker.  Add the roast.  Mix the water and A1 sauce together and pour over the roast.  Sprinkle with onion powder.  Cook on HIGH for about 7 hours.

Peel and dice the potato.  Open the slow cooker lid and carefully remove the roast.  Slowly put the diced potatoes into the slow cooker.  Place roast on top and cook on HIGH for another 45 minutes.

Remove roast and let it sit for five minutes, covered in foil.  Remove potatoes when the roast is ready.  Serve with a veggie of your choice.
A1 roast January 4

Hamburger Helper Chili Mac

I can be a lazy cook. Sometimes I just don’t feel like doing much, and on those nights, I tear open a box of Hamburger Helper and grab a pound of hamburger from the fridge.

I was lazy tonight and made Hamburger Helper Chili Mac.

It was pretty good.  My husband used to love Hamburger Helper and my teen son loves it, so once in a while I let the laziness pour over me and I make something simple.  OH, and I added one can of drained corn, so that my meal was pretty much a one-pan meal.HH chili mac

Blueberry Pancakes

I love blueberry pancakes!  This morning I made up a batch of pancakes; my teen didn’t want any, so there’s a bit of batter in the fridge for later 🙂

I used the recipe on the box of Bisquick, except that I cut the recipe since in half because I was the only one eating pancakes.

Ingredients

1 cup of Bisquick

1 egg, beaten

1 cup of milk

1/2 cup blueberries (mine were frozen and I didn’t thaw them first)

Directions

Mix together the Bisquick, egg and milk.  I mix it up good, but leave a few little lumps.  Add the blueberries and mix a bit more.

On preheated, greased skillet, pour out 1/4 cup of batter – this is what I used to make three pancakes. When the tops of the pancakes are all bubbly and turn them over.  Let them cook until the other side is browned.

Enjoy with butter and syrup.

blueberry pancakes

 

 

New Year’s Day Waffles

We made waffles for supper on New Year’s Day.  I love having breakfast for supper…it’s a nice change from the regular meat and potatoes that we usually eat.

I used the recipe that came with my son’s Oster Flip Belgian Waffle Maker.

Here’s the recipe for Classic Waffles:

Ingredients
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 tbsp. cornmeal (optional), I didn’t add this
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
3 large eggs, separated
2 tbsp. white sugar
1 3/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick of butter)

Directions

In large bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, cornmeal (if you chose to use it), baking powder and salt.  Blend thoroughly, then set bowl aside.

In mixing bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form.  Set bowl aside.

In another bowl, whisk the egg yolks, milk and vanilla.

Use a spatula to stir milk mixture into flour mixture; blend until dry ingredients are moistened – there will be lumps. Stir in melted butter.  Fold in beaten egg whites until combined.

Pour batter into hot, greased waffle maker and bake.  I found out that 1 cup will fill the waffle maker without spilling.  Also, I turn the waffle maker up to almost the highest heat; this makes the waffles crispier and browner.  This waffle iron has a little light on top that turns red when it’s on and then green when it’s ready for the batter.  Once you pour the batter in, the green light will turn off – that’s when it’s time to flip the waffle maker.  There’s a light on this side, too.  It will turn green when your waffle is ready to remove.

wafflesMy son made bacon, and I used my Keurig Mini for the first time and had hot chocolate.

Keurig hot chocolate