Monday, November 26, 2007

Vietnamese-Spiced Pork Chops

D made these the other night. Very good. The only thing is they tended to burn in the pan, so they came out rare and we had to microwave them to finish them off. However, they were still good. A sweet and hot mix... D used fresh ginger.

We had with Basmati Rice and Broccoli.

Vietnamese-Spiced Pork Chops

4 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut loin pork chops (about 1/2 inch thick)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons ground coriander
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 tablespoon bottled minced ginger
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
Cooking spray
Sliced green onions (optional)

Lightly score a diamond pattern on both sides of pork. Combine sugar and next 6 ingredients (sugar through garlic); rub evenly over pork.

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add pork; cook 4 minutes on each side or until done. Garnish with sliced green onions, if desired.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 pork chop)

CALORIES 199 (29% from fat); FAT 6.4g (sat 2.1g,mono 2.7g,poly 1g); PROTEIN 25.3g; CHOLESTEROL 62mg; CALCIUM 42mg; SODIUM 491mg; FIBER 1.1g; IRON 1.4mg; CARBOHYDRATE 9.2g

Cooking Light, OCTOBER 2003

Rudolph's Chocolate Truffle Cake

When Bro and I were little, my parents used to have a Christmas Party every year and get a Midnight Layer Cake from Bun Penny. I have not thought about that cake in many years until I made this. A picture will be coming...

It is a bit expensive as it required 6 bars of Ghiardelli Semi-sweet chocolate squares...but well worth it.

Rudolph's Chocolate Truffle Cake

8 (1-ounce) semisweet chocolate squares
2 1/2 cups milk
1 cup butter, softened
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Chocolate Truffle Filling, divided
10 (1-ounce) semisweet chocolate squares, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons whipping cream
1 to 2 (1-ounce) semisweet chocolate squares, finely grated

Stir together first 3 ingredients in a large heavy saucepan over low heat, and cook, stirring constantly, 8 to 10 minutes or until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat, and let mixture cool slightly (about 10 minutes).

Whisk together eggs and vanilla in a large bowl. Gradually whisk in melted chocolate mixture until blended and smooth.

Combine flour and next 3 ingredients; whisk into chocolate mixture until blended and smooth.

Pour batter into 3 greased and floured 9-inch round cakepans.

Bake at 325° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cake layers in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire racks.

Spread 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons Chocolate Truffle Filling evenly on top of 1 cake layer. Top with 1 cake layer; spread 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons Chocolate Truffle Filling evenly on top, reserving remaining 1/2 cup Chocolate Truffle Filling. Top with remaining cake layer.

Microwave coarsely chopped semisweet chocolate squares and cream in a 2-quart microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, stirring after 1 minute and then every 30 seconds until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth and slightly thickened. Let cool slightly (about 15 minutes).

Spread warm semisweet chocolate mixture over top and sides of cake. Chill cake 30 minutes or until chocolate glaze is firm. Pipe border using a rosette tip around bottom of cake with remaining 1/2 cup Chocolate Truffle Filling. Sprinkle finely grated semisweet chocolate evenly over top of cake.

Yield: Makes 12 servings (more like 20 servings)
12 servings = 22 points each
20 servings = 13 points each

Chocolate Truffle Filling

4 (1-ounce) semisweet chocolate squares
6 tablespoons butter
1/4 to 1/2 cup whipping cream, divided
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted

Microwave semisweet chocolate squares and 6 tablespoons butter in a large microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 1 1/2 to 2 minutes or until melted and smooth, stirring every 30 seconds. Stir in 1/4 cup whipping cream. Stir in 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, adding remaining 1/4 cup whipping cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary, until mixture is smooth and creamy. Let mixture cool completely.

Note: I didn't use the microwave...just a sauce pan.

Yield: Makes 1 3/4 cups

Friday, November 23, 2007

Baked French Toast Casserole with Maple Syrup

My friend Robin raved about this recipe and gave it to me. I made it...very easy. Robin had adapted it from Paula Deen but didn't use the 1800 sticks of butter that a Paula Deen recipe usually entails. Below is the adapted recipe...If you want the original go to Food Network.
Neither D nor I felt Syrup was necessary.

Baked French Toast Casserole with Maple Syrup
Makes 8 servings (big)

1 loaf French bread (13 to 16 ounces) (Kroger sells it pre-sliced in 1/2-inch slices)
5 large eggs
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
3/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Dash salt
Praline Topping, recipe follows
Maple syrup (didn't use)

Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1-inch each. (Use any extra bread for garlic toast or bread crumbs). Arrange slices in a generously buttered 9 by 13-inch flat baking dish in 2 rows, overlapping the slices. (I had 3 layers).

In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and beat with a rotary beater or whisk until blended but not too bubbly. Pour mixture over the bread slices, making sure all are covered evenly with the milk-egg mixture. Spoon some of the mixture in between the slices. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Spread Praline Topping evenly over the bread and bake for 40 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden. Serve with maple syrup.

Praline Topping:
1/4 pound (1 sticks) butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well. Makes enough for Baked French Toast Casserole.

Mac and Cheese

I saw Ina make this on Barefoot Contessa. It looked really good. So Doug made it for Thanksgiving, with a few adjustments. It was very cheesy. Leftovers are good, with a strong Gruyere taste. The thing I liked was there was no salt so I could add to my own liking.

For 12 servings, it equals 12 points each.

Mac and Cheese

Macaroni in the foreground
Photo by ALB

Kosher salt
Vegetable oil
1 pound elbow macaroni or cavatappi
1 quart milk
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
12 ounces Gruyere, grated (4 cups)
8 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated (2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 pound fresh tomatoes (4 small) ---we didn't use
1 1/2 cups fresh white bread crumbs (5 slices, crusts removed) --- we used Panko

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the macaroni and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.
Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't boil it. Melt 6 tablespoons of butter in a large (4-quart) pot and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cooked macaroni and stir well. Pour into a 3-quart baking dish.
Slice the tomatoes and arrange on top. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine them with the fresh bread crumbs, and sprinkle on the top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Meatball Sandwich

OK, I haven't tasted this or tried to make it. But Bro gave it to me with the review of " pretty much isnt lite anything but gd its so fn good."

Seeing as my brother has loved meatball sandwiches all my life, so I'm sure he has had bad, good and great ones, I'll take his word for it.

Perhaps I'll have it when I make my Rudolph cake...

Meatball Sandwich
Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes Ready In: 25 Minutes
Yields: 4 servings

1 pound ground beef
3/4 cup bread crumbs
2 teaspoons dried Italian
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh
2 tablespoons grated
Parmesan cheese
1 egg, beaten
1 French baguette
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 pinch salt, or to taste
1 (14 ounce) jar spaghetti
4 slices provolone cheese
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. In a medium bowl, gently mix by hand the ground beef, bread crumbs, Italian seasoning, garlic, parsley, Parmesan cheese, and egg. Shape into 12 meatballs, and place in a baking dish.
3. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cooked through. Meanwhile, cut the baguette in half lengthwise, and remove some of the bread from the inside to make a well for the meatballs. Brush with olive oil, and season with garlic powder and salt. Slip the baguette into the oven during the last 5 minutes of the meatball's time, or until lightly toasted.
4. While the bread toasts, warm the spaghetti sauce in a saucepan over medium heat. When the meatballs are done, use a slotted spoon to transfer them to the sauce. Spoon onto the baguette and top with slices of provolone cheese. Return to the oven for 2 to 3 minutes to melt the cheese. Cool slightly, cut into servings, and enjoy!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Wasabi and Panko-Crusted Pork with Gingered Soy Sauce

OK, I made this. Kroger doesn't sell wasabi paste, so I used wasabi powder. Also D always buys fresh ginger. So I used that.

Still not wasabi enough (this is the 2nd time having made it). I remembered about it after FFG reminded me of it. We had it with Basmati Rice which I also cannot make.

Wasabi and Panko-Crusted Pork with Gingered Soy Sauce

Photo by ALB

2/3 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) (I added 1/4 Tsp Wasabi Powder here)
1 large egg white, lightly beaten

4 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut loin pork chops (about 1/2 inch thick)
1 teaspoon peanut oil
Cooking spray
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon bottled ground fresh ginger (such as Spice World)
1/3 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons sake or dry sherry
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon wasabi paste (I added 2 tsp of time I will add 1 TBSP)
1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions

Place panko in a shallow dish. Place egg white in another shallow dish. Dip pork in egg white; dredge in panko.

Heat peanut oil in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat; add pork. Cook for 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove pork from pan; sprinkle with salt.

Reduce heat to medium. Add ginger to pan; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Combine broth and the next 4 ingredients (through wasabi) in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Add broth mixture to pan, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Stir in green onions. Spoon sauce over pork.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 pork chop and about 1 tablespoon sauce)

CALORIES 215 (28% from fat); FAT 6.8g (sat 2.1g,mono 2.9g,poly 0.8g); PROTEIN 24.5g; CHOLESTEROL 65mg; CALCIUM 15mg; SODIUM 454mg; FIBER 0.9g; IRON 1.1mg; CARBOHYDRATE 10.8g

Cooking Light, MARCH 2006

Tenderloin Sandwich

Every once in awhile you find one of those *duh* recipes. So that's what this one is. We had it with pierogies and salad. We were going to have fries, but the pierogies were there so ...

Again, Kroger didn't have tenderloin so we had flank, and D cooked accordingly.

Tenderloin Sandwich

Cook the lean tenderloin to medium-rare so the meat stays moist.
4 (4-ounce) beef tenderloin steaks, trimmed (1 inch thick) (we used flank)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cooking spray
4 (1 1/2-ounce) hamburger buns, split (we used wheat Kaiser rolls)
1/4 cup Dijon mustard (I used RF Mayo on mine)
4 romaine lettuce leaves
4 tomato slices
4 red onion slices (D caramelized a yellow onion and added mushrooms)
Sprinkle both sides of steaks with salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature 20 minutes.
Prepare grill.
Pat steaks dry with a paper towel. Place steaks on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Grill buns, cut sides down, 2 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove steak and bread from grill. Cover steak loosely with foil; let stand 5 minutes. Spread 1 1/2 teaspoons mustard over cut sides of buns. Place steaks on bottom halves of buns. Top each serving with 1 lettuce leaf, 1 tomato slice, 1 onion slice, and top half of bun.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 sandwich)

CALORIES 294 (26% from fat); FAT 8.6g (sat 3.3g,mono 3.4g,poly 0.4g); PROTEIN 28.6g; CHOLESTEROL 67mg; CALCIUM 81mg; SODIUM 741mg; FIBER 1.3g; IRON 3mg; CARBOHYDRATE 23.1g

Cooking Light, AUGUST 2006

Monday, November 12, 2007

Roadhouse Steaks with Ancho Chile Rub

We had this last night. We didn't use beef tenderloin because we shop at the Kroger which doesn't sell tenderloin and has no meat counter. So we subbed flank steak for it.

It took D about 2-3 minutes to prepare the rub. We had it with the CL suggestion of Peannutty Couscous and Broccoli. Now I didn't think the Couscous went with the steak. It was Asian meets Southwest. But both were good and I would have both again. Just not together.

Roadhouse Steaks with Ancho Chile Rub

1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 (4-ounce) beef tenderloin steaks, trimmed
Cooking spray
Prepare grill.
Combine first 8 ingredients in a small bowl. Rub spice mixture evenly over steaks; let stand 10 minutes.
Place steaks on a grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 steak)

CALORIES 177 (36% from fat); FAT 7.1g (sat 2.4g,mono 2.6g,poly 0.4g); PROTEIN 22.3g; CHOLESTEROL 59mg; CALCIUM 34mg; SODIUM 441mg; FIBER 1g; IRON 2.1mg; CARBOHYDRATE 3.9g

Cooking Light, MAY 2006

Peanutty Couscous

I made this last night. I adapted a Cooking Light Suggestion. Points are if you are following Weight Watchers. I put the recipe into the recipe builder to determine the points.

Peanutty Couscous

POINTS® Value: 4, POINTS Plus®: 5
Servings: 4


  • 1 1/2 cup fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup uncooked couscous
  • 3 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Jif Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 cup Green Onions
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Pour chicken broth into a medium saucepan and let it come to a boil. Add couscous, and cover. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, add the rest of the ingredients.

Add to the couscous and mix thoroughly.

Use low sodium soy sauce...seriously. I did not, because we didn't have any and I could tell in the morning, since my rings wouldn't fit.