Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Pork Chops with Mustard Cream

I saw this recipe on another blog, Culinary Infatuation. Chad and I love mushrooms, pork chops and creamy sauces so I knew it would go over well. I did end up adding a little flour to the sauce at the end to thicken it up a bit, but this was pretty awesome. The flavors with the wine, cream and especially the mustard were great.



Pork Chops with Mustard Cream

4 pork chops, 1 in. thick
flour for dusting
salt and pepper
3 tbsp. butter divided
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
1 cup baby bella mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup chicken stock, warmed
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard

Season chops with salt and pepper and dust with flour. Heat 2 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. oil in large pan over medium-high heat. Cook chops for 3 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate and keep warm. Add the rest of the butter and olive oil to pan and add onions and mushrooms. Saute for 5 minutes, then add garlic and saute 2 minutes more. Deglaze the pan with the white wine, scraping up the brown bits and let reduce by half, about 5 minutes. Turn heat to medium, add warm stock and stir, then add pork chops. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Uncover and cook 5 minutes more. Remove chops to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Add cream to juices in pan and reduce heat to medium-low. Let simmer for 5-8 minutes (this is where I added flour...I took a heaping tablespoon of flour and mixed it with some of the pan sauce, then added to rest of sauce). Remove from heat, add Dijon mustard and mix thoroughly. Spoon sauce over pork.

Roasted Asparagus

This is my favorite way to eat asparagus. I like to get the little skinny ones because they cook faster and get a little crispy in the oven.



Roasted Asparagus

1 lb. asparagus spears, ends snapped off and cleaned
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
kosher salt
ground pepper

Preheat oven to 375. Arrange asparagus on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil to coat. Add balsamic vinegar (not too much or it will be too strong...maybe about a tablespoon). Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss. Roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Best Dinner. Ever.

Ok, well maybe not ever. But this was pretty darn good. We only had enough leftover chicken for one of us to take for lunch, and I was the lucky winner. Chad told me this afternoon that he was very upset that he didn't get to eat it again. Easy to make and delicious...my two favorite things.

Chicken with Artichoke and Sun-Dried Tomato

This is one of those Publix Apron meals (that they make in the front of the grocery store). They are usually surprisingly good. I saw the sign for this one, and even though they weren't making it at the moment, took the recipe card to try at home. It was great...a combination of some of my favorite flavors.



Chicken with Artichoke and Sun-Dried Tomato

1 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup flour
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup white wine
6-8 fresh thyme sprigs
1/2 lemon
1 can quartered artichoke hearts, drained
1/3 cup julienne-cut sun dried tomatoes
2 tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese

Cut chicken into 1 in. chunks, toss with flour. Heat saute pan on medium-high. Add oil and chicken, cooking 4-5 minutes or until chicken begins to brown. Stir in wine, reduce heat to medium-low and cook 2-3 minutes or until liquid is slightly reduced. Remove stems from thyme, reserving leaves only. Squeeze juice of 1/2 lemon over chicken, stir in remaining ingredients (except thyme and cheese). Cook 2-3 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken from heat and stir in thyme and cheese.

Garlic Fries

This recipe was posted in the 20th anniversary Cooking Light as the "Best Potato Dish". I am a french fry lover, and any fry that tastes great and doesn't make me feel so guilty is a winner in my book.

Garlic Fries

4 teaspoons canola oil (I used olive oil)
3/4 tsp. salt
3 lbs. peeled baking potatoes cut into 1/4 in. strips (I used Yukon Gold)
2 tbsp. butter
8 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley (I used a few shakes of dried)
2 tbsp. fresh grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400. Combine first 3 ingredients in a zip-top bag and toss to coat. Arrange potatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400 for 50 minutes or until tender and golden, turning after 20 minutes. When potatoes are done, place butter and garlic in a skillet, cooking over low for 2 minutes. Toss with potatoes, add parsley and parmesan, and serve immediately.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Stuffed Mushrooms

I LOVE mushrooms...they are one of my favorite things. Chad used to hate them, but he was bound to start liking them because I eat them so much! This is another recipe from Elly Says Opa!, with one modification. These got rave reviews and were very easy to put together. I will use them again when I need a good appetizer recipe! (Sorry about the bad picture...my camera wanted to focus on the steak and baked potato for some reason!)



Stuffed Mushrooms

4 tablespoons butter, divided
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
5 slices bacon
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
10 oz. fresh spinach
1/3 cup heavy cream
20-24 large stuffing mushrooms
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs (this was my addition)

Preheat oven to 400 and grease a cookie or baking sheet. Cook bacon, drain, and crumble. Set aside. Remove stems from mushrooms. Arrange caps in baking dish and finely chop stems. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in saucepan over medium heat and add onion. Cook 2-3 minutes before adding garlic and spinach. Cook spinach down and make sure garlic and onion are tender. Mix in bacon, chopped stems, and cream. Bring to a boil and then remove from heat. Mix in cheese, salt, and pepper. (This is where I added the breadcrumbs. I thought the mixture was a little wet, so I added the breadcrumbs to thicken it a bit. I liked the flavor!) Stuff mushroom caps generously with mixture. Drizzle 2 tablespoons melted butter over. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Creamy Chicken Lasagna

It's back to school time after a long Christmas break...yuck. I invited my friend Susan over to commiserate the end of vacation, and made chicken lasagna, which I had been craving. This recipe is originally from Karen and I made a few modifications to suit my tastes. This is a great dish to make for parties and get-togethers since you can assemble ahead of time, and the left-overs are just as good as the first time you eat it!



Creamy Chicken Lasagna

9 no-boil lasagna noodles
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 package baby bella mushrooms
1 sweet onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 boxes cream cheese (room temperature)
2 cups mozzarella cheese, divided
1 chicken bouillan cube
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon garlic powder
ground black pepper
1 jar favorite sauce (I use tomato cream or I make my own)

Boil the chicken until no longer pink, about 20 minutes, then chop or shred. Saute mushrooms and onion in olive oil until soft, adding minced garlic at last minute. In large bowl, combine chicken, sauteed veggies, cream cheese, 1 cup mozzarella, basil, garlic powder and pepper. Dissolve the bouillan cube in 1/4 cup VERY hot water, and add to chicken mixture.

Spread 1/3 of sauce in bottom of 9x13 pan, and top with 3 noodles. Spread half of chicken mixture on top, then 1/3 of sauce, the noodles, then rest of chicken mixture, then noodles. Top with remaining sauce and sprinkle with remaining cup of mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 45 minutes, then uncover for 15-20 minutes.