Monthly Archives: February 2014

John’s Chili with Pork and Black Eyed Peas

On paper, I wasn’t sure how much I was going to like this John Makes a Stew a Week Winter (Working Title) dish (mostly because I’m kind of picky about chili). Turns out I didn’t need to worry – probably the best chili ever made in our house. John halved a Michael Symon recipe (who has five pounds of pork cheeks?) and substituted pork shoulder (which in itself took me four grocery store stops), which the recipe encourages.

johnchili

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Scallops with Bacon, Spinach and Brussels Sprouts

I’ve been trying to have more improv cooking nights, where I buy an ingredient or two that sounds appealing and build a meal around it as I go. I did this tonight with scallops and brussels sprouts, and the results were really nice. The dish isn’t anything special or fancy (well, beyond how expensive the awesome scallops are at our fish place), but it’s satisfying; we had this with some rosemary white beans on the side.

scallopsbacon

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John’s Braised Chicken Thighs

This was kind of a random pick for John’s stew last week, but we really liked it. The flavor reminded me of smothered pork chops for some reason. The picture here’s a little weak – it’s my reheated leftovers.
braisedthighs

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Club Wraps

I may have a new favorite low-stress lunch option. I’m going low carb for the next two weeks leading into Mostly Meatless March. I just really need to get my weight under control (too many events and meals out lately). Didn’t have much in the fridge for lunch beyond rice, so I hit up the grocery store and this idea came to mind.

Club sandwiches are one of those foods I just crave every once in awhile (lately I’ve been having them on rye – yum!). Is the bread necessary to satiate the craving? These aren’t much to look at, but they did the trick, and were really easy and WW-friendly. I think I am going to make a turkey breast next week for dinner, and I bet these would be great with fresh turkey, too.

 
clubwraps

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John’s Pork and Green Chile Stew

John’s been getting more experimental with his stews, since he’s largely run out of John Classics at this point (though I’m still waiting on my Carbonnade, dammit). He tried out this one from Food & Wine and it was just great. Though we ate too much of it and didn’t have nearly as many leftovers as I would have liked.

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Dishes I Like to Make for a Crowd

I made some banh mi on Saturday to serve during one of my game nights, and it got me thinking about what dishes I like making for groups of people. I could be smarter about remembering reliable recipes for entertaining (often I try something new), but these ones have served me well.

Turkey Meatball Banh Mi

Create-Your-Own-Cobb (and other salad variations)

Scallops Provencal (mostly for nicer occasions/holidays)

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Any take on fajitas

Marinated chicken thighs (these spicy ones and these Vietnamese ones in particular)

Chicken with white beans

Pumpkin chili (a Halloween tradition)

Pork nachos

Roast vegetable sandwiches

Broccoli pasta

Honey wine chicken thighs

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Slow Cooker Stroganoff

This was a smart technique for stroganoff – make a chuck roast in a slow cooker and use that as a base. I added dill and mushrooms to the recipe, as it doesn’t seem like stroganoff to me without those ingredients. It was a big hit at Dena’s Olympic watching party.

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Filed under beef dishes, crock pot