Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Stuffed Pork Loin

Greg’s been looking at barbecue web sites lately and they’ve inspired him to try something new. On Sunday afternoon, he whipped up this stuffed loin of pork and cooked it on the rotisserie on the grill.

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He sliced the loin in kind of a circle pattern so it laid open flat, then layered it with prepared Stovetop stuffing (I know, but he loves it…). He didn’t tell me he was doing it, so I didn’t get a photo of that step, but I did see he was tying it up and putting the rotisserie hardware on, so I grabbed the camera. Here it is, ready to cook. Stuffed, then simply seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and some paprika. According to Greg, the paprika gives the meat a nice color.

Here it is, sliced up and ready to feast on:

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It was very tender and flavorful, and the stuffing added some moistness. I imagine we’ll be experimenting with different stuffing ingredients – he’s talking bleu cheese… I’d love to add some dried cranberries to the Stovetop (again, I know, but it was pretty good).

Any suggestions you want him to try?


Saturday, March 13, 2010

Some Sunshine on a Cloudy Day

Grace and I made these together this morning. It was our “project” for the day and she did a great job! Photos of her cupcakes will be posted on my other blog, but here’s the recipe from Family Fun. It was a bit more tedious than I expected, so next time we thought we’d use a pastry bag for each color rather than try to spoon it all out. We’ll see…  They’re really very pretty when you break them in half.

Taste a Rainbow

From FamilyFun Magazine

Taste a Rainbow

  • White cake mix (we used an 18-1/4-ounce box)
  • Food coloring (red, blue, green, and yellow)
  • Baking cups
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  1. Prepare your favorite white cake mix, then divide the batter evenly among six small bowls. Following the chart below, dye each bowl of batter a rainbow color.


    9 red and 6 blue drops

    12 drops

    12 drops

    12 drops

    12 yellow and 4 red drops

    18 drops

  2. Line 16 muffin pan wells with baking cups. Evenly distribute the purple batter among the cups, then the blue, and so on, following the order shown. As you go, gently spread each layer of batter with the back of a spoon to cover the color underneath.

  3. Bake the cupcakes according to your recipe directions. Before serving, remove the paper wrapping, and if you like, top each cupcake with a whipped-cream cloud.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


I made turkey pot pie for supper yesterday, prepping the filling in the morning, so all I had to do at suppertime was throw on the biscuit topping and pop it in the oven. That left me some extra time to make a lil’ somethin’ for dessert. It needed to be simple, quick, use ingredients I already had in the house, and yes, it had to be chocolate.

Since I already had my Joy of Cooking cookbook out, I took a quick glance through the recipe index and decided on chocolate pudding. Only a few ingredients and it whipped up in a heartbeat. Well, several heartbeats, but it was fast.

Old-Fashioned Chocolate Pudding

1 3/4 C milk (I used skim)

1/2 C sugar

2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped

1/8 tsp. salt

Combine in a heavy saucepan. Heat over med-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is melted.

3 Tbs. cornstarch

1/4 C milk

Mix together until smooth. Stir slowly into hot milk mixture. Stirring constantly, heat over medium heat until mixture just comes to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, stirring briskly, bring to a simmer and continue to cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 tsp. vanilla.

Pour into 5 or 6 ounce serving dishes. Cover with plastic wrap pressed directly onto the surface of the pudding. Chill for at least 2 hours. (Serves 4)

Have you ever had homemade pudding? Try this and you’ll never purchase that instant boxed stuff ever again! Enjoy!

(Oh, sorry, no photo. You think there’s anything left to take a picture of?)


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Coconut Crème Brulee

When we had our turkey dinner for lunch on Sunday, Greg was responsible for dessert. He thumbed through the current issue of Bon Appetit and found this recipe for coconut crème brulee.

Crème Brulee is really easy to make, plus there’s the fun of torching the sugar on top before eating. This particular dish had a very subtle coconut flavor, and was rich and smooth.

creme brulee

Coconut Crème Brulee  (Bon Appetit, March 2010)

1 C sweetened flaked coconut, divided

3/4 C + 8 Tbs. sugar

7 large egg yolks

1 3/4 C heavy whipping cream

1 14 oz. can unsweetened coconut milk

2 Tbs. Malibu rum or other coconut flavored rum (we got one of those tiny bottles)

1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350. Spread 1/2 C flaked coconut on rimmed baking sheet. Bake until light golden, stirring once, 10-12 minutes.

Whisk 3/4 C sugar and egg yolks in medium bowl to blend. Mix cream, coconut milk, toasted coconut, and remaining 1/2 C sweetened flaked coconut in heavy large saucepan. Bring just to simmer over med-hi heat, whisking occasionally. Gradually whisk hot cream mixture into yolk mixture. Stir in rum and 1/2 tsp. salt. Strain custard through a fine strainer into medium pitcher, pressing on solids. Divide among eight 2/3-3/4-cup ramekins or custard cups.

Place ramekins in large roasting pan. Fill pan with enough hot water to come halfway up sides of ramekins. Bake custards until edges are set, but centers move slightly when dishes are gently shaken, 45-50 minutes. Remove custards from water. Chill custards uncovered until cold, then cover and chill overnight.

Sprinkle 1 tsp. sugar over each custard. Using kitchen torch, heat sugar until melted and deep amber. (Alternatively, preheat broiler. Place ramekins on rimmed baking sheet and broil until sugar melts and turns deep amber, 1-2 minutes.) Chill until sugar hardens, about 15 minutes.

You can try to eat this quietly, but I bet there will be lots of “mmmm”s. :o)


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Chile Verde Meatballs

This recipe has been in my computer file for a couple of weeks, but I didn’t make note of where I found it, so I can’t share the source with you. It’s also been on my menu plan for a couple of weeks, but I finally was able to make it for supper, so I can share that with you!

This is so easy to whip up, and very tasty without being too spicy. I made my own meatballs (remember, I keep some in the freezer) instead of using purchased frozen ones. Even if you don’t have any meatballs in your freezer, they don’t take long to make (20 minutes in a 350 degree oven), so you, too, can avoid the icky, rubbery grocery store variety.

These were served with rice, refried beans, and warm flour tortillas. My original plan was to have black beans, but it turns out we didn’t have any in the cupboard. (Back to the freezer again for the homemade refried beans. Yea!)

This photo is Jessi’s plate, since I had gobbled down half of my meal before thinking of taking a picture. She really likes sour cream, so I thought I’d make note of that – I didn’t use quite that much. :o) The sour cream really does finish off the flavor of this dish, though, so make sure you have some for garnish.

chile verde meatballs

Chile Verde Meatballs
1 large fresh onion, minced
2 cloves minced garlic
1 (16 ounce) jar salsa Verde
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 lbs frozen meatballs
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 cup sour cream, for garnish
- Into a large, heavy pot, add the onion, garlic, salsa Verde, broth, and the meatballs.
- Simmer on low for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally; add the ground cumin
and simmer for 15 minutes more.
- Serve with sour cream for garnish, along with rice and beans and
**Note: you can also make this in your crockpot on low for 4 hours, adding
in the cumin in the last 30 minutes.