Thursday, January 27, 2011

Brined Chicken Breasts with a Mandarin Glaze

This recipe definitely happened by accident. Well sometimes mistakes can turn into delightful surprises.

I took some chicken breasts out of the freezer after work to thaw and cook for dinner. When I go to start making my meal, I discover that they're still frozen! I don't really remember what I ended up actually eating for dinner that night, but I figured I'd make the most of my situation and have something wonderful for the next night. So... I put the semi-frozen chicken breasts in a pot of water along with salt, coriander seeds, bay leaves, and red pepper flakes, and stored it in the refrigerator until the next day.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Season with garlic salt, pepper, and parsley, and place in the oven. In a saucepan, combine 2 tbsp of mandarin orange preserves, 1 tbsp brown mustard, 2 tbsp brown sugar, and 2 tbsp ketchup. After 20 minutes of baking, baste every ~10 minutes until done (about 45-50 minutes of cooking time total).

I served it with brown rice and fried corn. For the corn, I sauteed the kernels in 2 tbsp of butter and seasoned it with salt, pepper, chili powder and paprika.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Pan Seared Pork Chops with Spinach and Black Eyed Peas

This is a meal rooted in the south with a different spin on it. Although I have never actually live in the south, I consider myself somewhat of a southern gentleman by association. Both sides of my family have their roots below the Mason-Dixon line and as they migrated northward they brought along a lot of their recipes with them. A more "classic" version would likely entail breading and frying the pork, substituting the greens for something along the lines of a collard, kale, or mustard variety, and starting with dry beans that are cooked with a pork product of some sort, such as ham hock, salt pork, bacon, etc. (After all - pork is king.) I hope you enjoy my iteration of this meal.

  • pork chops
  • olive oil
  • seasoned salt
  • garlic salt
  • dried parsley
  • 1 can of black eyed peas
  • 1 box of frozen spinach (thawed)
  • Hungarian (hot) paprika
  • hot sauce
  • salt and pepper
Season the pork chops with seasoned salt, garlic salt, pepper and parsley. Drizzle a hot skillet with olive oil and cook the pork chops. Once they are finished cooking, remove them from the pan and let them rest. Next, add a can of drained black eyed peas and allow them to heat through for a couple of minutes. Then toss either fresh or frozen spinach that has been thawed into the pan with the beans and season with salt, pepper, Hungarian (hot) paprika, and a few dashes of hot sauce. Continue to heat the entire mixture in the pan for a few more minutes and then serve.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Vegetable and White Bean Soup

A nice soup can go a long way. And a simple one is the extra cherry on top. For this tasty bowl I took the leftover chicken sauce/broth from my dinner party meal (you can use whatever stock you may have in your cupboard) and added some frozen mixed vegetables along with a can of cannellini beans. Then taste and adjust as needed with some salt and pepper, and then you have a quick meal in almost no time.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Like I said, I love a good burger...

...and here's another one!
Plus it comes with some fried potatoes, the best condiment ever (ranch!), and a seasonal Blue Moon. The burger is cooked simply in a skillet sprinkled with pepper, seasoned salt, and garlic salt. And the potatoes were left overs from the dinner party (see two posts below) that I cut a little smaller and then fried in some canola oil.