Balsamic Pork Chop Skillet

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You know what I currently have a lot of? Cell phone videos of my kid gagging on green vegetables. Peas and green beans were both an epic fail, so when we got around to trying asparagus with him, I only made a few spears – I knew there would be lots of disgusted faces and spitting it out. To be fair, I don’t know if I’d be a huge fan of plain, steamed asparagus either.

The asparagus in this dish, though, was awesome. My husband said it was his new favorite way to eat it. And a one pot dish = less to clean up, so this was a win all around.

Another win this past week? Getting Jake to eat broccoli without gagging. I mixed it with sweet potatoes and he happily gobbled it up. Why didn’t I think of that before?!

BalsamicPorkSkillet


Balsamic Pork Chop Skillet

(adapted from Cooking Light)
Serves 2

2 boneless pork chops
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup  olive oil, divided
12 oz. red potatoes, cut into chunks
3 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. tomato paste
1 1/2 tsp. herbs de Provence
1 small red onion, chopped
8 oz. asparagus spears
2 Tbsp. Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Preheat your oven to 425F degrees.

On the stovetop over high heat, heat a heavy, oven-safe skillet. Add 2 Tbsp. of the oil and heat until shimmering. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. .Add pork to pan and cook until browned, about 3 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and cover with foil. Reduce heat to medium-high and add the potatoes to pan and cook for 2 minutes, tossing occasionally. Remove pan from heat.

In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 2 Tbsp. oil, vinegar, tomato paste and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Take 2 tbsp. of this mixture and toss with herbs de Provence, onion, and asparagus in a bowl. Add this mixture to the potatoes and stir to combine.

Bake for 25 minutes, stirring about halfway. Place the pork chops over vegetables and bake until the pork is cooked through, about 15 minutes. Top pork chops with additional balsamic mixture and Gorgonzola cheese before serving.


Hawaiian Pork Burrito Bowls

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Seven months into motherhood and I’m finally coming to terms with the fact that I can’t do everything. It been a lesson in “OR” lately.

You can spend time making dinner OR go visit the adorable new twins across the street OR get another load of laundry done.

You can make that nice stew that simmers all day OR go to the baby play date OR run errands at the mall.

It seems that more and more, I’m pushing dinner to the back burner so I’ve been trying to plan easier, more hands-off meals. This slow cooker meal was a huge win – healthy, flavorful and quickly prepped before my busy day got out of hand. It was so nice to plop on the couch for baby cuddles instead of starting dinner after running around!

HawaiiPorkBurritoBowls

Hawaiian Pork Burrito Bowls
(adapted from The Housewife in Training Files)
Serves 6

1 14.5 oz can tomato sauce
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
2 Tbsp. chili powder
2 Tbsp. cumin
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. paprika
Pinch of cayenne
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 cup pineapple juice
2 lbs. pork sirloin roast
6 cups of cooked rice
2 bell peppers, thinly sliced
Pineapple, sliced into rings
Avocado, sliced

In the slow cooker, whisk together the first 11 ingredients (tomato sauce to pineapple juice). Add the pork and turn to coat. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Remove pork, shred and return to slow cooker, stirring to combine with the juices.

When the pork is just about done, heat a grill pan. Grill peppers and pineapple until peppers have char marks and the pineapple is starting to caramelize.

Serve pork in bowls with rice, peppers, pineapple and avocado.

 


Pork and Apple Hotpot

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Every once and a while I make something that cooks all day and makes the house smell awesome and think, why don’t I do this more often? This is one of those dishes. Pork chops and onions and bacon and apples simmering for hours before dinner? Yes. Please.

I’ve made this several times, and it never disappoints. It’s making it’s first appearance on the blog, though, because it’s one of those meals that’s terrible to photograph. It’s ugly, plain and simple. But it’s delicious and you should make it anyway.

 

Pork and Apple Hotpot
(slightly adapted from Nigella Kitchen)
Serves 4-6

3 Tbsp. olive oil
3 onions, peeled, halved and sliced into half-moons
1/2 lb. bacon, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp. apple pie spice
Salt and pepper, to taste
6 boneless pork chops
4 Granny smith apples, peeled and thinly sliced
3 cups apple cider

Preheat the oven to 325F degrees. In a large skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the onions and cook until translucent, about ten minutes. Remove to a bowl and set aside. Add the bacon pieces and fry until cooked but not crispy. Remove to the bowl with the onions and mix together.

In another bowl, whisk together the flour, apple pie spice, salt and pepper. Coat each of the pork chops in the flour mixture. Add 3 at a time to the pan and sear. Remove to a plate when finished. Whisk any remaining flour into the pan. Add in the apple cider and bring to a boil, whisking often.

In a dutch oven, layer as follows: bacon and onion on the bottom, 3 pork chops, apple slices, onion and bacon, 3 pork chops, apple slices, onions and bacon, and then the remaining apple slices. Pour the apple cider mixture evenly over everything.

Cover and bake for 3 hours.


Pulled Pork Pizza

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So, you know how blogging around here was pretty slow around here towards the end of the year? I’m sure most people figured it was because of the baby but it was actually much more embarrassing – I filled up my hard drive. As in, I couldn’t put another thing on it without deleting something else. I quit taking pictures of things I was making because getting them onto the laptop was such a pain. (Well, I guess you could blame the baby – I’d filled it up with baby pictures…)

This was a pizza I made during that unintended blog break – and remade last week just so I could share it. I whipped it up to use up some leftovers and it turned out awesome – even my Mom, whom swears she hates spicy things, loved it.

And I finally bought a new computer so transferring pictures should be easy-peasy going forward.

Pulled Pork Pizza
(a Kate’s Recipe Box original)
Makes 1 12″ Pie

1 lb. pizza dough
1/3 cup barbecue sauce
1 Tbsp. chipotle Tabasco sauce
1 cup pulled pork
2 Tbsp. chopped red onion
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1 cup cheddar cheese

Roll out dough into a 12″ circle.

In a small bowl, whisk together the barbecue sauce and chipotle tabasco sauce. Spread over the crust. Top with pulled pork, red onion and cheeses.

Bake at 425 until the crust is golden, about 20 minutes.


Almond Crusted Pork Chops with Mustard Sauce

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It’s super cliché, but we’re totally on holiday detox around here. I love indulging in all the holiday goodies, but by December 26th I just wanted a big salad. Does that officially make me old?

Either way, I’ve been mixing in some healthier meals during this last week. This has been one of those meals. These pork chops were pretty much everything I want in a dinner lately – quick, easy and super flavorful. Mark walked in the door from work and I handed off the baby for a diaper change. By the time he’d ditched his work clothes, changed the baby and made it back downstairs, I was plating them. Win all around!

Almond Crusted Pork Chops with Mustard Sauce
(from On My Way to Skinny)
Serves 2

2 pork chops, trimmed of fat and pounded to 1/4″ thickness
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup fat free half and half
1/2 tsp. dijon mustard
1 1/2 tsp. almond meal
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil to shimmering. Season pork chops with salt and pepper and dredge in almond meal. Fry for 4-5 minutes per side, until golden brown. Remove to a plate and cover to keep warm.

In the same skillet, whisk in the half and half, Dijon mustard, almond meal and oregano. Bring a boil, whisking constantly, and cook for 2 more minutes, until slightly thickened. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve sauce over pork chops.


Balsamic and Herb Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Vegetables

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This is actually a dinner I made last month, but it’s something we’ll be repeating this month since it fits October Unprocessed well.

And by I made, I mean it was a group effort. Our friend, Chris, just took a job in Saudi Arabia (!) so we had him over for dinner as sort of a last hurrah. I started cooking and then Mark took over when I had to feed the baby. Chris pitched in by making the gravy as Mark got the pork cut and plated. You know you have good friends when they have no qualms about jumping in to help in the kitchen! We’re really going to miss having him around.

This is a nice dinner because it’s a one-dish meal. I’m always a fan of fewer dishes! The marinade made for a really flavorful pork tenderloin and we used the last of the green beans out of the garden. I served this with a nice, warm loaf of bread to round out the meal.

Balsamic and Herb Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Vegetables
(from The Other Side of Fifty)
Serves 6

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
1 tsp. fresh sage, chopped
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 1/2 lb. pork tenderloin
2 lbs. medium red skinned potatoes, scrubbed, diced into 1/2″ cubes
3/4 lb. green beans, ends trimmed
1/4 cup canola oil
1 heaping TBSP whole wheat flour
1 cup chicken broth

In a large bowl or ziplock bag, combine the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, mustard, garlic, rosemary, thyme, sage, salt and pepper. Add the pork, turn to coat and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

Preheat the oven to 400F degrees. Heat the canola oil to shimmering in an oven-safe pan.

Remove pork and discard marinade. Sear on all sides then transfer to oven and cook until the pork reaches 140F degrees on a meat thermometer. Remove pork from pan and tent on a plate. While the meat cooks, microwave the potatoes on high for 8 minutes, stirring halfway.

Increase the oven temp to 450F degrees. Add potatoes and green beans to the pan and toss to coat in the oil. Roast for an additional 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer the vegetables to a serving platter.

Whisk the flour into the juices remaining in the skillet and cook for 2 minutes over medium heat. Whisk in the chicken broth and continue whisking until smooth and reduced to the desired thickness.

Slice the meat and serve with vegetables and pan gravy.


Hawaiian Hula Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw

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When my friend, Lindsay, mentioned she was making this for dinner a couple of weeks ago, I immediately asked for the recipe. She raved about it the next day, so it went on the menu for the following week.

I’m so glad I didn’t wait to make these! They take a little time, but they’re so worth the effort! The pork was incredible, but the pineapple slaw really took this to a whole different level. The pork is really versatile too, which made for great leftovers. After enjoying them as tacos, we had the leftover pork as sandwiches (topped with the slaw) and then used the remaining pork in quesadillas (along with some fresh pineapple). So, so good!

Hawaiian Hula Pork Tacos with Pineapple Slaw
(from Half Baked Harvest)
Serves 6-8

For the pork:
3 lbs. pork shoulder roast
2 1/2 cups pineapple juice
2 tsp. ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup soy sauce
2/3 cup ketchup
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2-3 Tbsp. sriracha
Tortillas, for serving
Shredded cheddar, for serving

For the pineapple slaw:
3 Tbsp. Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2 Tbsp. fresh pineapple juice
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. orange zest
Pinch of salt and pepper
2 cups shredded cabbage
1/3 cup green onions, chopped
3 Tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped
1 cup fresh pineapple, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped

Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.

In a large bowl, whisk together the pineapple juice, ginger, brown sugar, soy sauce, ketchup, sriracha and vinegar until well combined.

Place the pork in a dutch oven and add about half of the sauce. Place in the oven and roast for 3-4 hours, until the pork shreds easily. Remove the pork, shred and return to the dutch oven. Mix in additional sauce until you have the consistency you want. Heat on the stove top until heated through.

While the pork is cooking, make the pineapple slaw: In a medium bowl whisk together the Greek yogurt, rice vinegar, pineapple juice, brown sugar, orange zest, salt and pepper until well combined. Add in cabbage, green onions, cilantro, pineapple and jalapeno and toss until evenly coated. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serve cooked pork in tortillas, topped with shredded cheddar and pineapple slaw.


Rum & Coke Glazed Ham

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We made up this gorgeous ham for Sunday dinner a few weeks ago when we had company. I sort of love making ham – it’s so hard to screw up and there’s so many fun recipes out there. I ran across this one last month when I was browsing for ideas for my What’s Baking submission and couldn’t get it out of my head.

The glaze isn’t an in-your-face rum and coke, but the flavors are there if you’re looking from them and it adds a really nice sweet and spiced-ness to the ham. It’s the perfect ham for a special summer dinner.

Rum and Coke Glazed Ham
(from Noble Pig)

1 large ham
60 oz. coke, divided
3/4 c. dark brown sugar
1/4 c. prepared yellow mustard
1/4 c. fresh lime juice
2 T. dark rum
1 T. dry mustard
Pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 325F degrees.

Pour 36 oz. of the Coke into the bottom of a roasting pan and add the ham on a rack. Bake, tented, for one hour.

Meanwhile, prepare the glaze. Reduce the remaining 24 oz. of Coke over medium-low heat for about 40 minutes, until there is a 1/2 cup left. Mix in the remaining ingredients and simmer to dissolve.

After the ham has been cooking for an hour, uncover and glaze every 15 minutes during the last hour. Allow it to rest for 15 minutes before carving.


Pork Chops with Strawberry Balsamic Sauce

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Last year, we planted a small strawberry patch – this year, it’s exploding. I love it. We’re in the height of the season now, it seems, and we’re picking a few handfuls of berries a day.

We’ve been eating them for breakfast and throughout the day, but they were starting to pile up just a little so I went searching for a way to incorporate them into dinner, too. These pork chops were perfect – so good, super easy after a long day of work and they used up that day’s strawberry bounty!

 

Pork Chops with Strawberry Balsamic Sauce
(from Taste.com)
Serves 2

1 1/2 c. strawberries, chopped
2 T. good-quality balsamic vinegar
1 t. sugar
1 T. olive oil
2 pork chops
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 T. chicken stock

Toss the strawberries, balsamic vinegar and sugar together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large frying pan. Season pork chops with salt and pepper and then add to pan. Cook through, about 10 minutes. Remove to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

Deglaze the pan with the chicken stock and then add strawberry mixture to the pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low until heated through. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Top pork with strawberry balsamic sauce and serve.


What’s Baking: Spicy Black Bean Empanadas

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This month’s What’s Baking theme is puff pastry. I think most people think of dessert when they think of puff pastry – I know I do – but for some reason, I always end up making savory dishes when I buy a box. This go around was no exception. After browsing a lot of sweet recipes, I ran across this one and immediately started drooling.

I love street food in general. Anything you can eat on the go, I’m a big fan of. Empanadas are something I’ve enjoyed many times while we’re out but I never tried making them before. These were perfect.

I sized the recipe down so I was only using one box of puff pastry – this recipe made more than enough for the two of us for dinner plus leftovers – but if you’re making these for a crowd you may want to double this recipe.

Check out The Boys Made Me Do It later this month for a recap of the puff pastry dishes other bloggers made!

Spicy Black Bean Empanadas
(adapted from All Recipes)
Makes about 16 empanadas

1/4 lb. ground pork
1/2 red pepper, diced
2 green onions, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 c. tomato sauce
1/2 t. ground cumin
1/2 t. chili powder
1/8 t. crushed red pepper
3/4 c. shredded cheddar
1/2 c. black beans
2 T. fresh cilantro, chopped
1 package puff pastry, thawed
1 egg
1 T. water

In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, cook the pork until well browned. Add in the red pepper, green onions and garlic. Cook until tender. Add in the tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder and crushed red pepper. Stir to combine and reduce heat to low. Cook for 8 minutes and then stir in the cheese, black beans and cilantro. Set aside to cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 375F degrees.

Unroll the puff pastry onto a lightly floured surface and roll out into a 16×12″ rectangle. Cut out rounds using a 2 1/2″ biscuit cutter. Top half of each circle with 2 heaping teaspoons of black bean mixture. Brush the edges of the pastry with water and fold over. Seal with a fork.

Place the empanadas on a lined baking sheet and back for 18 minutes or until golden.