Thursday, March 12, 2015

Guinness-Glazed Pork Chops

We bought our traditional case of Guinness this week to celebrate St. Patty’s Day--there’s nothing like that creamy, delicious, dark stout to sip during the last days of winter. I found a recipe for Guinness-Glazed Lamb Chops and thought I’d give it a try. Only tweaked it a bit to use ground spices instead of whole (no straining needed that way) and a different sort of meat. The end result is a sweet-and-salty, spiced, robust sauce that pairs well with savory pork chops, and would go well with chicken in my opinion. Word of warning: Don’t boil the glaze too long, or you’ll end up with caramel…not a terrible thing in of itself, but much harder to apply to pork chops!

Yields about 1 1/2 cups of glaze
1 pub can of Guinness (16 oz)
1t ground coriander
1t ground black pepper
1/4t salt
1/2c dark brown sugar
Meat of choice (I used 5 center-cut bone-in pork chops)

1. Combine all ingredients (except meat) in a small non-stick pot (you will want non-stick if you make caramel by accident…).
2. Place chops on a greased foiled baking sheet. Drizzle a bit of the sauce on each piece. Cook at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes. Flip after 15 minutes. Meat is done when internal temperature is 160 degrees F.
3. Cook glaze on high heat, stirring often, until the sauce starts to thicken. This should take less than 10 minutes. Be aware that the mixture will thicken up as it cools also.
4. Serve each chop with a scoop of the glaze. Slainte!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

KA Lime and Spice Fajitas

Another KA quickie! This is quick. This is easy. You will love it. What else is there to say?
OK, I do have a few things to say. Thank you to Jaden Hair and her great Craftsy class for reminding me of the beauty of cooking wok-style. I don’t have a wok, but I do have a nice big saucepan, and the techniques work almost as well (I think!). And thank you to Park Street Pantry for having tasty spicy salts. They are pretty awesome for adding a bit of spice to any dish, be it as a finishing touch or while cooking. Do take care with the ghost pepper salt, though…

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced into long pieces
High-heat oil, such as canola
4 oz baby bella mushrooms, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1–2 red bell peppers, sliced
Granulated garlic
Granulated onion
Lime juice
Cayenne pepper powder
Chili pepper powder
Spicy salts (got mine from Park Street Pantry)
Shredded cheese

1. Put a dollop of oil into your saucepan or wok and heat over high heat. When hot, add the chicken chunks. Season with some of the above spices—don’t worry if you can’t get everything on the chicken. You will be adding spices in layers via the other ingredients that are coming later. Do be sure to squeeze in some lime juice, though. Turn over the chicken pieces after a few minutes to make sure both sides get nicely cooked. Push the saucepan so it is slightly off the heat—shove the chicken to that part of the pan.

2. If necessary, add a bit of oil. Add the onions to the pan. Sprinkle on some more spices. Squirt on some more lime juice. Stir fry for a couple minutes, until the onions change to a softer texture. Push them against the chicken.

3. Repeat the last step with the mushrooms. They will take 4 to 5 minutes. Push to the side.

4. Last stir-frying step! Add the peppers. Spice, etc., stir. We like our peppers to be warmed through but still have a texture, so I only do 2-3 minutes here. 

5. Mix everything together in the pan and remove from heat.

6. Serve on tortillas with a light sprinkling of cheese on top. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Gyudon: AKA Awesome Japanese Beef and Onions in Wine Broth over Rice

This is an adaptation of one of my favorite recipes from my favorite cookbook (Let’s Cook Japanese Food!). It is easy. It is delicious. It has alcohol in it. It is Japanese. What else could one want?

2 lb thinly sliced beef
3/4 C soy sauce
1 C wine (any will do—I used merlot)
1 C sake
1 T ginger juice (removed from a jar of grated ginger)
1 t ginger (somewhat inevitable when fishing the juice out of the ginger jar)
1/2 C sugar
2 onions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T salt
Beef broth or hot water to fill
2 C rice
4 C water

1. Put everything in your crockpot. Put on high for 3 hours.
2. After the beef is done, make the rice. Put the rice and water into a covered pot over high heat. When the water boils, turn the heat to low or medium (whatever works to keep it simmering). After 15 minutes, turn off the heat. Allow the pot to sit, covered, for another 15 minutes.
3. Serve in a bowl—a scoop of rice, topped with some of the broth and a scoop of the meat and onions. Enjoy!