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Cranberry Balsamic Pork Tenderloin

Monday, August 21, 2017


This is one of my very favorite meals to make. The flavors of the cranberry balsamic sauce over the pork tenderloin is fantastic. The woodsy rosemary, the tart cranberry and the sweet balsamic...heaven. This would make a great meal for holiday guests, and it is easy enough for a weeknight meal as well. I usually serve this pork with maple pecan sweet potatoes. Any type of sweet potatoes will do for this recipe. The potatoes really compliment the flavors of the pork.

Cranberry Balsamic Pork Tenderloin
Ingredients
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 pork tenderloin
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/3 cup canned whole-berry cranberry sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Directions
Preheat oven to 450°F.
Melt 1/2 tablespoon butter in heavy large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat.
Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Sear pork on all sides, about 2 minutes.
Place skillet with pork in oven. Roast pork until thermometer inserted into center registers 155°F, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in heavy medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and rosemary; sauté until onion softens, about 3 minutes.
Add broth, cranberry sauce and vinegar and whisk until cranberry sauce melts, about 2 minutes. Transfer pork to work surface. Scrape any juices from large skillet into cranberry mixture.
Boil until sauce has reduced enough to coat spoon thickly, about 6 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Slice pork and serve with sauce.
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Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes

Wednesday, August 16, 2017







In my opinion,you can't get more kid friendly than sloppy joes. My husband and sons love these things.I have a few recipes that I use,but this one gets the most compliments from them.The perfect tangy ,tomato-y sandwich. This recipe used sweet relish,which I love in my sloppy joes. I double the recipe and there is enough for lunches the next day. ** The longer it simmers to meld the flavors,the better.

Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes

  • 2 lbs ground chuck
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 6 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 2 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons prepared mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 hamburger buns, toasted
  1. Brown ground chuck and onion in a large nonstick skillet, stirring until meat crumbles; drain.
  2. Stir in ketchup and next 5 ingredients.
  3. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Spoon meat mixture over bottom halves of buns; top with remaining halves.

Beef & Broccoli

Wednesday, August 9, 2017




Summer is winding down , the kids have started football practice in the afternoons and school starts in a few short weeks. Which for me means slow cooker meals.  Fortunately  both kids are in the same school this year, so they will both be home at the same time, which will make dinner a whole lot easier than when they were home in shifts. I tend to rely on slow cooker meals to feed them a few nights a week. This beef and broccoli has been a staple dinner for us for years. Chinese food always gets smiles from them and this recipe is no exception. If my older boys are home I will double this recipe and use my large oval slow cooker, but now that there are just 4 of us at home, one recipe seems to work for us if I also make a salad and bread.
For the broccoli, I buy a bag of steamable broccoli and microwave it  for half the time it states  (you don't want the broccoli too mushy) and put the broccoli into the slow cooker the last 30 to 45 minutes of cooking.  If you do not have fresh ginger , just use ginger powder. A few shakes to your taste. Or you can leave out the ginger altogether,  but I always use it. It makes the sauce super flavorful. Serve the beef over steamed rice and you have a great weeknight meal.

Beef & Broccoli

Ingredients
1 1/2 lbs flank steak, sliced
1/2 onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic,minced
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 cup beef broth
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 brown sugar, packed
1 T sesame oil
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 T cornstarch
4 cups broccoli, steamed
White rice, prepared

Directions

1.In a slow cooker, add strips of flank steak, onions, garlic and ginger.

2. In a medium bowl, stir together beef broth, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil and red pepper flakes until the sugar has dissolved. Pour sauce over the steak in the slow cooker.

3. Cook on low 3 to 4 hours. After 4 hours, remove about 1/4 cup of the liquid from the slow cooker and whisk in 2 T of cornstarch until smooth. Add back to the crockpot and stir.

4. Add the steamed broccoli and stir well. Cook for another 30 minutes and serve the beef and broccoli over rice.

Fire and Ice Pickles

Tuesday, August 1, 2017



You guys!  have no idea why I haven't shared this recipe with you before. I have made these yummy pickles for years and every time I do, I fall in love with them all over again. These pickles are so easy to make . Just mix, let sit and refrigerate. No canning involved. I promise these things are addictive. They are sweet and crunchy when you first taste them. But then the hot kicks in from the Tabasco and red chili pepper flakes. And oh man! You just can't  eat just one.  These make great hostess gifts and Christmas gifts for teachers and neighbors.

* note * use hamburger chips , not kosher dill slices. The kosher dills leave a weird aftertaste. I find the 32oz jars of hamburger pickles at Aldi . They are perfect for this recipe.

Fire & Ice Pickles
Ingredients
32 oz jar sliced dill pickles ( I use hamburger chips)
2 c sugar
1 T Tabasco Sauce ( or other hot sauce)
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes ( I use a bit more. I like the heat)
1 clove garlic, whole

Directions
1. In a medium bowl, add all ingredients and mix well.
2. Cover the pickles and let them stand for two hours.
3. Stir the pickles well and transfer all ( pickles and juice) to a jar.
4.Store in the refrigerator. Will keep for a few weeks .

Liz

Slow Cooker Chicken Stroganoff

Monday, July 31, 2017


This is one  of those go-to recipes I use when I really do not want to cook, but  I know that I will be  even more inclined not to cook as the day goes on. Every now and then I am a total sucker for convenience foods. In fact, I always make sure I have packets of italian salad dressing mix and a can or two of Healthy Choice reduced fat cream of chicken soup on hand so I can make this meal on days like today.  I first had this chicken stroganoff almost 12   years ago when our youngest child was born. A friend from our church brought us over   chicken stroganoff ,and my  husband and older sons loved it. So it became a favorite meal very quickly. I love that it is so versatile.You can add mushrooms ,onions,  or even broccoli florets.You could also use sour cream instead of the cream cheese. Or use  both to make it super rich. It can easily be doubled for a larger family. I use reduced  fat  cream of chicken soup  and cream cheese. Who doesn't love a tasty, kid friendly meal that cooks in the crock pot all day?



Slow Cooker Chicken Stroganoff


Ingredients

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed

 2 T butter

1 (.7 ounce) package dry Italian-style salad dressing mix

1 (8 ounce) package  reduced fat cream cheese (or you can use sour cream)

1 (10.75 ounce) can reduced fat condensed cream of chicken soup


Directions


Put chicken, butter and dressing mix in slow cooker; mix together and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours.

In a bowl, whisk together the cream cheese and soup. Pour over the chicken and cook on high for another 1/2 hour or until heated through and warm.


Serve  with rice ,egg noodles or  pasta of your choice.


Pineapple Ginger Shredded Pork

Thursday, July 20, 2017



As a mom of boys, one thing I figured out early on in the madness that is motherhood, is that if I put dinner in a taco or tortilla, it will be eaten. It is just one of those meals that I know that they will eat. This shredded pork is no exception. It is slow cooked all day in a slow cooker, yielding perfectly tender meat that stands out in flavor. It really packs a punch. It has a hawaiian/ pacific islands type taste to it, but I use it as my staple shredded pork. It tastes so good with cilantro and pickled onions on tacos as well as piled onto a sweet hawaiian bun or even atop a bed of coconut rice to make a quick meal.
We always have leftovers of this meat and the sauce, and the next day I  make grilled naan pizza with the shredded meat. I thicken up the leftover sauce in a saucepan over medium high heat and a bit of cornstarch to thicken it up a bit to spread over the naan. Then I pile on the meat, add fresh pineapple , red onion and cilantro, topping it all off with fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese. Heaven !
This pork is a good idea for weeknight meals , especially during the school year. It has become a favorite in our rotation. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

PINEAPPLE GINGER PULLED PORK

Ingredients
3.5 lb boneless pork shoulder (or butt)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 1/2 cups pineapple juice
2 tsp ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
2/3 cup ketchup
1/4 c rice vinegar
1-2 T Sriracha sauce

DIRECTIONS
1.In a small bowl, mix together the salt, pepper and garlic powder. Sprinkle evenly all over the pork shoulder.
2. Place the pork shoulder in the slow cooker. With a sharp knife, stab the meat a few times. (This helps absorb the sauce)
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the pineapple juice, ginger, garlic,brown sugar,soy sauce, ketchup, rice vinegar and sriracha sauce.
4. Pour 1/2 of the sauce over the pork, reserving  the rest.
5. Cook on low. for 6 -7 hours.
6. Shred the pork and add the reserved sauce to your liking .


Easy Weeknight Korean Beef

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


This is a tried and true recipe that everyone in my household loves. Korean Beef. This is not authentic korean beef. But the flavors arw close , eveb with it being Americanized. Sweet, spicy carmelized ground beef over steamed rice. So good. And it is so quick to put together. And inexpensive to make. You can always add steamed veggies to the meat to make it more substantial. If I have fresh broccoli or cauliflower , I will usually serve it on the side. But it is just as good without the veggies. 1/4 c of brown sugar is enough for us ( and a scant one at that) , but you can add up to 1/2 c if you like the meat a bit sweeter. And you can sub  the Sriracha sauce for crushed red pepper. I usually use the crushed red pepper, but my husband prefers the Sriracha. There are never any leftovers with this one.



Weeknight Korean Beef
Ingredients
1 lb lean ground beef
1 T vegetable oil
3 T brown sugar
1/3 c low sodium soy sauce
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 to 1 tsp crushed red pepper (or Sriracha sauce,to taste)
1 bunch green onions

Directions
1.Heat the sesame oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef and garlic. Brown an drain off the fat.
2.Add the brown sugar, soy sauce, ginger, black pepper and crushed red pepper ( or sriracha sauce). Simmer for a few minutes to heat through, stirring well.
3. Serve overrice and top with sliced green onions.


Liz