Cantalope, Tomato & Avocado Salad with Butter Garlic Baked Pork Chops

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Servings 4

Total Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Nutrition Information

Calories 192

Carbohydrate 22g

Protein 3g

Fat 13g

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoon(s) lime juice
  • 4 teaspoon(s) honey raw
  • 2 tablespoon(s) olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) sea salt coarse
  • 1 medium cantaloupe(s) quartered and seeded
  • 1 medium avocado(s)
  • 1 cup(s) tomato(es) cherry or grape, halved

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together lime juice, honey, oil and sea salt; set aside.
  2. Cut each cantaloupe quarter in half lengthwise. Run a knife between the flesh and the skin of the melon, discard skin. Slice each wedge lengthwise into 1/2 inch pieces.
  3. Cut each avocado in quarters lengthwise and then into 1/2 inch thick slices. Add cantaloupe, avocado, and grape tomatoes to bowl with dressing and toss to coat.

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Garlic Butter Baked Pork Chops (Super easy to make!!!)

Garlic Butter Baked Pork Chops are juicy, tender, and super-flavourful thanks to the amazing butter sauce. You need less than 20 minutes to make this recipe.

INGREDIENTS

2 medium-sized heritage breed pork chops

kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons grass-fed butter — melted (use ghee if you’re doing whole30)

1 tablespoon fresh thyme — chopped

2 cloves garlic — minced

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.

2. Season the pork chops with salt and pepper, and set aside.

3. In a small bowl, mix together the butter, thyme, and garlic. Set aside.

4. In a cast-iron skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat.

5. When the skillet is really hot, add the pork chops. Sear until golden, about 2 minutes per side.

6. Pour the garlic butter mixture over the pork chops.

7. Place the skillet in the oven, and cook until the pork chops reach an internal temperature of 145ºF, about 10-12 minutes. The time depends on the thickness of your pork chops.

8. Remove from the oven. Using a spoon, pour some of the butter sauce left in the skillet onto the pork chops before serving.

Cantalope, Tomato & Avocado Salad with Butter Garlic Baked Pork Chops

Shaved Mushroom & Celery Salad

salad

I found this recipe in America’s Test Kitchen Mediterranean Cookbook and since I had all the ingredients, decided to give it a try.  I added a little and left out a little.  I made notes below the recipe.

INGREDIENTS

  • ½ pound cremini or white button mushrooms, very thinly sliced
  • 4 celery stalks, from the heart of the celery, very thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon minced chives or tarragon
  •  Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice, or 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1/2 tablespoon (1 1/2 teaspoons) white wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 ounces shaved Parmesan

Toss together the mushrooms, celery, parsley, and chives, and season with salt and pepper. Mix together the lemon juice (or lemon juice and vinegar) and olive oil, and toss with the vegetables. Just before serving, toss again with the Parmesan.

Notes:

I used a little dried tarragon, as my chives are way out in the garden and probably frozen.  I did not use any vinegar as the recipe from the book did not call for any, but I did use EVOO (1/4 cup) and mixed it with the lemon juice, then added the very thinly (1/8 inch or less) mushrooms and thinly sliced celery to the mix and let it set for 10 minutes.

Since I had 2 ounces of grated regiano parmesano in the refrigerator I add that, then shaved the same for the top of the salad.  My garden is a little short of parsley this time of year, so I added baby arugula.

This would be a lovely salad to serve for dinner with friends, as it is a bit different, but delicious.  Hope you enjoy making it.

 

Shaved Mushroom & Celery Salad

NOTHING LIKE A RICH DINNER

Dinner tonight was simple, at least the salad was and easy.  When I was out and about I picked up what I needed to make a simple Mac & Cheese for my husband for dinner.  It is one of his favorites, but it cannot be too complex or out of the ordinary.  It has to taste like the Mac & Cheese he grew up eating (sort of)

I thought we were going to have a simple green salad, but realized the greens were now brown and throwaway-able. But I had corn from the night before, lots of avocados (bag from Costco), and cherry tomatoes.  My way of finding a recipe for what I have, is to put them all in a search and see what happens.  Well, it seems that a corn, avocado, cherry tomato salad is quite common.

Here is what I came up with and I was wonderfully delicious.

Ingredients:

2 Ears of left over corn – cut off kernels

1 Cup cut up cherry tomatoes of various colors.

2 Avocados, cut into 1/2 in cubes

2 TBS Champagne vinegar

1/4 Cup of your best EVOO ( Extra Virgin Olive Oil)

2 Tsp Dijon Mustard

3 cloves of garlic pushed through a garlic press.

A touch of pepper and tiny touch of salt

Mix it all together, put in a couple of pretty white bowls, so the colors show and enjoy.

 

I subscribe to about a dozen foodie newsletters and email lists, so get new ideas of what might be good every day.  Epicurious is one of the ones from which I receive daily ideas. This morning their Favorite Macaroni & Cheese Recipe arrived.  Since my husband is a big fan and this looked simple, we had it for dinner.

Serves 12
Cooking time = 40 minutes
Total Time = 1 hour

Ingredients

  1. For the topping:
    • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for baking dish
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 2 cups panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
    • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
    • 2 ounces finely grated Parmesan (about 1/2 cup)
    • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  2. For the macaroni and sauce:
    • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more
    • 1 pound dried elbow macaroni
    • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
    • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • 4 cups whole milk
    • 3/4 cup heavy cream
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons mustard powder
    • 16 ounces coarsely grated extra-sharp cheddar (about 6 cups)
    • 2 ounces grated Parmesan (about 1/2 cup)
  3. Special equipment:
    • 9- by 13-inch baking dish ( I used an oval Le Creuset baking dish)

Preparation

    1. Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in the middle of oven. Butter the baking dish.
  1. Make the topping:
    1. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat butter and oil until butter foam subsides. Add panko and garlic; cook, stirring, until crumbs are golden brown, 4–6 minutes. Transfer crumbs to a medium bowl, stir in Parmesan and salt, and set aside.
  2. Prepare the macaroni and sauce:
    1. Set a large, covered pot of salted water over high heat to boil. Add macaroni and cook until just al dente (avoid overcooking). Drain macaroni and set aside.
    2. In a large wide pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Sprinkle flour over butter, whisking to incorporate and make a roux. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until roux is light golden, about 4 minutes. Gradually pour in milk and cream, whisking constantly to incorporate and make a béchamel sauce. Raise heat to medium-high and bring sauce to a low boil, whisking constantly. Reduce to a simmer, whisking occasionally, and cook until béchamel sauce is thick and coats the back of a spoon, about 3 minutes more.
    3. Add 2 tsp. salt, pepper, and mustard powder. Add the cheeses in three batches, whisking until each addition is completely melted before adding more. Remove from heat.
    4. Add the drained macaroni to the pot with the cheese sauce and stir well to coat. Transfer macaroni mixture to the buttered baking dish and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle topping evenly over macaroni and bake until golden and bubbling, 18–22 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes before serving.

It was a hit, but boy it made a lot.  So I made labels; Mikie’s Mac & Cheese and put a lot in our extra freezer!  Happy cooking and hope you all had as glorious a day as we did in the Pacific Northwest.

 

NOTHING LIKE A RICH DINNER

Gnocchi Tonight

This afternoon about four, I decided Beet Gnocchi for dinner might be fun. I went with organic yellow beets, as the red seemed a little harsh with the sage.  The recipe is very straight forward and simple, but I would make a few changes.  I would add a little more flour, as the dough was VERY sticky.  I would make the individual gnocchi smaller next time too, to be prettier in the presentation.  I took the sage from the Butter Sauce, broke it up with my fingers and added to the top of each dish.  When I added a tiny bit of freshly grated Reggiano Parmesano it burst into lusciousness.  What a yummy dinner with a simple Arugula (had left over) and mixed greens said, dressed with Champagne vinegar and EVOO.  Not the most diet dinner, but surely was tasty.  Enjoy the recipe.

Beet Gnocchi with Brown Butter Sage Sauce

For the gnocchi
  • 1 lb. red beets (about 3 medium), trimmed ( I used yellow)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 11-oz. russet potato, whole and unpeeled
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 9 oz. (2 cups) all-purpose flour; more as needed
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
For the sauce
  • 4 oz. (8 Tbs.) unsalted butter
  • 10 large fresh sage leaves or 20 small leaves
  • Kosher salt
Make the dough

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350°F.

Put the beets in a baking dish, season lightly with salt and pepper, drizzle with the oil, and add 1/4 cup water to the dish. Cover with foil and roast until easily pierced with a skewer, 45 to 60 minutes. (Alternatively, roast the beets in a heavy-duty foil packet on a rimmed baking sheet.) When cool enough to handle, peel and cut the beets into chunks.

Cover the potato with about 1 inch of water in a saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil over medium-high heat, reduce to a gentle boil, and cook until easily pierced with a skewer, 35 to 40 minutes. Drain and let cool briefly. Peel the potato as soon as you can handle it. Pass the potato through a ricer into a large bowl, spreading it out to help any steam escape.

Combine the beets, egg, and yolk in a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Transfer to the bowl of still-warm potatoes. Add the flour, 1-1/2 tsp. salt, and the nutmeg, and mix gently with your fingers until the dough comes together; it will be sticky. Add more flour, 1 Tbs. at a time, until soft but not sticky.

Shape the gnocchi

Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment and dust well with flour. Lightly flour a work surface. Turn the dough out onto the flour and gently flatten it by hand or by lightly rolling with a rolling pin until about 3/4 inch thick. If the dough is sticky, lightly dust the top with flour, too.

With a floured bench scraper or a knife, cut the dough into strips from 1/2 to 3/4 inch wide. With your hands, roll and lengthen the strips until about 1/2 inch in diameter. Using the bench scraper, cut the logs into 1/2- to 1-inch pieces (size is up to you).

If you want to give the gnocchi ridges, use the side of your thumb to gently roll each piece down the length of a gnocchi board or the tines of a fork, while simultaneously pressing lightly on the dough. (A fork will produce gnocchi with more pronounced ridges than a gnocchi board.)

Arrange the gnocchi in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets, making sure they don’t touch. If not cooking the gnocchi right away, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 4 hours. Even better, freeze the gnocchi right on the baking sheet until hard. (Frozen gnocchi are easier to handle than fresh and hold their shape better.)

Make the sauce

Combine the butter and sage in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the milk solids turn golden brown and smell toasty, about 10 minutes. Remove the sage leaves. (If you like, reserve them to serve over the finished gnocchi; leave small ones whole, but crumble large ones.) Season the sauce lightly with salt, and keep warm.

Cook and serve the gnocchi

Have the sauce ready and warm on the stove. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Reduce the heat to just below the boil. Add the gnocchi and cook, stirring once, until they float to the surface, 1 to 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon or similar utensil to transfer them to a bowl as they cook.

Gently toss the gnocchi with enough sauce to coat well, garnish with the reserved sage leaves, if you like, and serve immediately.

Make Ahead Tips

You can freeze the shaped, uncooked gnocchi for up to 1 month. Once frozen rock solid on the baking sheets, transfer them to freezer bags and return to the freezer. Cook as directed without thawing.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : 1 portion of gnocchi plus 1 Tbs. sauce, Calories (kcal): 570, Fat Calories (kcal): 350, Fat (g): 40, Saturated Fat (g): 22, Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2, Monounsaturated Fat (g): 13, Cholesterol (mg): 150, Sodium (mg): 645, Carbohydrates (g): 46, Fiber (g): 3, Sugar (g): 4, Protein (g): 8

Gnocchi Tonight

Simple and simply Delish!

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French Onion Soup, with a little homemade Focaccia on the side for a light dinner.  I just didn’t photograph the pasta that followed and ruined the effect.

Love these little soup bowls as you can have just a little taste of soup for the first course.  I often do this when entertaining or just for the two of us at home.

When I make a simple soup, I make a lot and freeze it in Mason Jars.  (Just be sure to leave room at the top for freezing space) On nights I don’t feel like cooking.  [You know the one that you have spent all day in the garden], it is nice to know there is something simple and good in the freezer; and just add a salad and you have dinner in ten minutes.

In the summer there is always lots of lettuce growing in my garden, so that is the time of year I love salads the most.

This last month I added a herb garden in planters on my covered deck, so I can have fresh herbs at my disposal all year, without walking out in the rain to cut them. My husband installed a drip system, so I don’t even have to worry about watering them.  It is just nice!

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This summer we will install a translucent wall, so they get light and we have privacy. The only disadvantage of living on the beach, is the close proximity to other houses.  These little additions make fresh cooking so simple.

Simple and simply Delish!