Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Cheese Steak Pasta Casserole


A couple of years ago we went to surprise our son in Salem Massachusetts on Father's Day. It was his fiancees idea to surprise him. He was over the moon happy to see us and we all ventured to downtown Salem to have Father's Day brunch at Tavern In The Square Restaurant. We sat outside in the lovely sunshine enjoying one another company, sipping on some refreshments and checking out the menu.

One dish popped out to me as I am a lover of macaroni and cheese. What popped out at me was their Steak and Schroom Macaroni and Cheese. It was delicious and I had no problem devouring it. Well that dish has stayed with me for a while and I've wanted to recreate it ever since. But, my husband isn't as big a fan of mushrooms as I am so I recreated a pasta dish using caramelized onion and steak in a cheesy sauce with pasta which was our dinner last evening.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Braised Short Ribs with Balsamic Sauce


Tangy, sweet, beefy and smooth, the balsamic sauce takes these short ribs up another level in the taste department.

I am embracing this Sunday and doing what I love the most. That's being in my kitchen fussing over tonight's dinner. When the kids were young and still here in the nest and I was a full-time working mother, during the cold months I would menu plan for the week and spend my Sunday's cooking meals for the week. My kids are all grown and have left the nest but I still get great pleasure spending Sunday's in my kitchen.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Paprikash Pork Chops


 A well balanced sauce and succulent pork chops combine for a magnificent weeknight meal. Uncomplicated, simple and a meal that is ready in under an hour, Paprikash Pork Chops will become a family favorite in your home.

The last of our one dollar per pound pork chops have come out of the freezer and we are having one more pork chop dinner this week. The other day I made pork chops with apricot sauce which tasted exquisite and I was thinking whether we should take these pork chops and make our standard go to  braised pork chops with onions or do something different.

As I began to take notice of what was available in the pantry and refrigerator it struck me. Paprikash. Now typically it's chicken paprikash but I thought that pork would also be lovely swimming in the beautiful sauce that is created when you make it with chicken. Pork pairs well with peppers, with tomatoes and with sour cream. Therefore, what's not to love?

And, I must give props to the sauce. The sauce is incredibly delicious. I could eat it by itself over egg noodles and be totally satisfied. There's a subtle flavor from the pork in the background along with the loveliness of the peppers, tomato and onion. The sour cream/chicken broth combination perks up the sauce tremendously. So if you have someone in your family that won't eat meat, they can at least feast on the egg noodles topped with this sauce.

  • 4 bone-in pork chops
  • 1 green bell pepper - cut into strips
  • 1 large onion - diced
  • 1 large tomato - peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. paprika
  • 1/4 cup flour or cornstarch
  • cayenne pepper to taste
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • granulated garlic to taste
  • onion powder to taste
  1. Season both sides of the pork with salt, black pepper, onion powder and granulated garlic to taste.
  2. In a large dutch oven over high heat, melt the butter and olive oil and add in the pork chops.
  3. Brown them well (about 2 minutes) and flip them over and brown the other side for 2 more minutes. Remove the pork chops and place on a platter.
  4. In the same dutch oven, add in the onions, turning the heat down to medium low and cook until they become translucent, stirring and scraping to get up all of the good bits from the bottom of the pan.
  5. Next, de-glaze the pan with the chicken broth and add in the bell pepper, tomato, paprika and cayenne pepper and salt and pepper to taste. Give a good stir.
  6. Add the chops back to the pan and lid it. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Again, remove the pork chops to a platter.
  7. Add the flour or cornstarch into the sour cream, stirring to combine well then whisk this mixture into the sauce. At this point you could elect to use a hand held food blender or regular blender and puree the sauce. What I did was to use a spider and dig out some of the pepper, onion and tomato and put them in a bowl. Then I used the hand held blender to puree the rest of the sauce after adding in the sour cream mixture than added the whole pepper strips, etcetera back to the pan.
  8. Add the pork chops back in and cook for a few minutes to warm the chops in the sauce.
These are the dinners that I referenced at the top of the post. I hope that you also take time to check these out.

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