Just a little ole working gal, who loves food

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Say I love you with Bacon..Part 2~

If you have been reading this blog for a while you will notice that I use bacon in a lot of my recipes. Mostly because it tastes freakin amazing but also because my husband has a very unhealthy obsession with it. So when Valentines day came a few weeks ago I knew I had to top my last bacon creation (See here for Part 1). This Bacon creation is called Pig, wrapped in Pig...literally.
There are a lot of missing pictures...mostly because my hands were constantly covered in pig and marinade while prepping this. First you need a nice Pork Loin. Not a tenderloin...although I am sure it would be fine, but a whole pork loin that they usually cut into pork chops. Make sure it is boneless and if there is a thick layer of fat on it, cut it off. Make a rub for the loin. I used about a 1/4 cup Dijon mustard, 2 tbsp of Brown sugar, 1 Tsp dried thyme and lots of salt and pepper. Spread this all over the loin really well. Then wrap the whole sucker in Bacon. Place on a cast iron pan and bake at 375F until the loin is cooked through (145F internal temp). If your bacon starts to cook too quickly just lower the temp to 350F. I did not turn or touch the loin during the cooking process.
Remove from the oven and allow to rest for about 10 Minutes. Slice and serve. My loin has a very slight pink hue to it...trust me...it is cooked...actually it is cooked perfectly!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Almond, Pecan Parmesan Crusted Sweet Potato's & Kale

I made this side dish last week and posted the pictures up on my facebook wall. After many people messaging me asking for the recipe I decided to post it this week instead of next week! It is quick, seriously easy to make and so so tasty! I have had it twice since then!
Cube 2 Sweet potatoes and add them to a casserole dish with 1 tsp of olive oil and season with a little salt and pepper. Bake at 375F until they are slightly softened and halfway cooked (about 15 minutes). Add 2 Cloves of Minced garlic. Continue to cook until potatoes are fully roasted.

While the potatoes are cooking prepare your crust. In a bowl combine 1/4 cup chopped pecans and 2 Tbsp of almond slivers with 1/4 cup grated baby parmesan (you can use regular parm but i only had baby parm on hand). Toss this together with a little olive oil and set aside.

When the potatoes are cooked through add about 3 cups of chopped kale (stems removed), toss well so that the kale gets coated in the leftover olive oil in the dish. Top with the pecan/almond/cheese crust and pop back in the oven until the cheese is melted and the nuts start to brown. Be careful not to burn the nuts. The kale should also crisp up to give a wonderful texture to this dish!

Serve with your favourite protein!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Grandma's Cabbage Rolls

This is a recipe I have been meaning to try for quite some time now. I have never made cabbage rolls before...because my grandma always made them. And she made them perfect...so why even try? Well unfortunately my grandmother passed last year...and brought her recipe with her. We had talked about her teaching me how to make them but the time was never right. HOWEVER, she did talk to me about how she made them and her little secrets. She also showed my mother how to make them. So combining both our memories and trying to remember the flavours as best we could, we came up with this recipe. And I have to say...it was pretty bang on! So Grandma, your cabbage roll legacy lives on!

First take your cabbage and place it in a pot with about 1 inch of boiling water. Cover and allow to steam for about 5 Minutes.
Remove your cabbage from the steam bath and allow to cool enough so that you can handle it. Remove the cabbage leaves one by one and place in a pot of hot water. This will soften the cabbage enough to allow you to roll it. Set this aside while you prepare the filling.
In a large bowl combine equal parts Extra Lean Ground Sirloin and Ground Pork.
(About 1 lb of each)

Add 1/2 Minced Onion, 4 Minced Garlic Cloves, 1 Tsp each of Paprika, Cumin, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Sea Salt and 1 Tbsp of Cracked Black pepper. Also add a dash of cinnamon!

Add about 3 cups of Cooked Rice. I know my grandmother used white long grain but I only had brown rice.

Combine the filling mixture well. Adding more spices if you feel it needs it.

Place some of the filling in the middle of a cabbage leaf. Fold the edges in first then roll.


Place all the cabbage rolls in an oven proof baking dish.

Now this was my grandmothers secret to this recipe. I used the Extra Spicy Clamato because I love cabbage rolls with a kick to them!

Pour the Clamato over the cabbage rolls until they are half way swimming in Clamato juice. Bake, covered in foil, in a 350F oven for about 1.5 hours. At the 1.5 Hour point I add 1 Large can of chopped tomato's over the rolls. Recover and bake for an additional hour or until the cabbage is pretty translucent.

There you go Grandma! My favourite dish you ever made for me!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Crockpot Guinness Beef Stew

This weekend we got a nice cold snap that made me want to just curl up in bed with my cats. But then my husband would starve if I did that. So I decided I needed to make something warm and hearty in the crockpot for when he got home from work. Nice wife that i am.
In your Crock pot add 5 Large Chopped Potato's, 2 Large Chopped Carrots, 2 chopped Onions and 4 Cloves of Minced Garlic.
In a bowl coat your cubed stewing beef in flour, salt and pepper. Brown the beef in small batches with a tbsp of Olive Oil.
Add the partially cooked stewing beef to the crockpot.
Add 1 Full can of Guinness, 1 Tbsp of Sugar, 1 Can of Tomato Paste and 1 Tsp of Fresh chopped Thyme. Top up the crockpot with Beef Broth until the veggies and beef are covered. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
Stir and allow to cook on low for 10-12 hours. The beef will be melt in your mouth tender and so tasty! I like to ladle the stew into a saucepan with a touch of cornstarch and hot water to thicken up the sauce then serve it over Mashed Potato or even Rice!
Stay Warm Friends!