main dishes · recipes

Grilled pork chops with bacon and mushrooms

A friend of ours shared this recipe with us a while back and I finally got a chance to make it. It is a fantastic way to cook pork chops if you you are looking for something different.

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 to 4 bone in pork chops
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp cracked pepper
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp oregano
  • 1 Tbsp sea salt
  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups baby bella mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 cups shallots chopped
  • 1/4 cups of white wine
  • 1 1/2 cups of spinach
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. lather pork cops with Dijon mustard and season with black pepper, garlic powder, dried oregano and sea salt. add chops to skillet and let cook for 8 minutes per side.
  2. while chops are cooking, add bacon to wok and cook for about 5 minutes per side.
  3. when chops are halfway done, add mushrooms and shallots to wok and cook for 2 minutes. finally add white wine and spinach to wok and let simmer another 5 minutes.
  4. stir occasionally and finish with lemon juice on top.
  5. once chops are done, add mushroom sauce on top of meat and enjoy.

just as a side note I just barely sprinkled garlic powder on ours because my hubby doesn’t love garlic and they were still fantastic.

main dishes · recipes

Instant Pot Best Ever Beef Stroganoff

Well I have always been a fan of stroganoff, but my hubby is a take it or leave it kinda guy. I have tried a lot of different recipes throughout the years and think I have found the perfect one. And I can honestly say I hate stew, so this is a great way to use it up any stew meat we have around as well.

I found the recipe here: https://pressureluckcooking.com/recipe/instant-pot-beef-stroganoff/ 

INGREDIENTS

  • 12 oz package of wide ribbon-like egg noodles, boiled separately according to package (I find using half the package is enough but feel free to use it all)
  • 1.5 to 2 lbs of beef stew meat
  • Kosher salt, a few generous shakes for seasoning the meat
  • Black pepper, a few generous shakes for seasoning the meat
  • 2 tbsp of salted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 16 oz of cremini and button mushroom mixture sliced
  • 1 tbsp of crushed garlic
  • 1/4 cup of a dry white wine
  • 1 tbsp of dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp of seasoned salt
  • 1.5 cups of beef broth (I use 2 tsp of Beef Better Than Bouillon + 1.5 cups of water)
  • 1 tsp of dried thyme
  • 2 tbsp of cornstarch + 2 tbsp of water
  • 1 packet of dry onion dip/soup mix
  • 1 cup (8 oz) of sour cream
  • 5.2 oz of Boursin Garlic & Herb (SECRET INGREDIENT! If you can’t find the Boursin which is usually located in the deli section of your supermarket near the fancy cheeses and cured meats, use 5 oz of a brick of cream cheese )

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Cook the egg noodles on the stovetop according to package instructions while the meat’s cooking and strain and set aside (Note: you can also do this during Step 7 while the Stroganoff is pressure cooking, but just make sure you do it separately on the stove and don’t add the noodles directly into the pot while pressure cooking or they will absorb too much of the liquid and will become mushy)
  2. Season the meat with the kosher salt & pepper (about 1-2 tsp of each should be fine) and rub it in well
  3. Add the butter to the Instant Pot and hit “Sauté” and adjust so it’s on the “More” or “High” setting. After about 3 minutes (and once the butter’s melted), add in the meat and sear on all sides so it’s lightly browned (about 2-3 minutes total; the meat shouldn’t be fully cooked at all). Remove the meat with a slotted spoon and set aside in a bowl for the time being
  4. Now, add the onion to the pot with the already heated oil and butter and let cook for 2 minutes and then add the mushrooms and let cook for 3 minutes more. Then, add in the garlic and cook for another minute
  5. Next, add in the white wine and stir for a minute followed by the dijon mustard and seasoned salt, stir well and deglaze (scrape) the bottom of the pot so nothing’s stuck to it
  6. Lastly, add in the beef broth and thyme and stir well followed by adding back in the browned beef
  7. Secure the lid, hit the “Keep Warm/Cancel” button followed by the “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button High Pressure for 12 minutes. Allow a 10 minute natural release (meaning you do nothing for 10 minutes when done and the timer count up to either “00:10” or “L0:10”) followed by a quick release.
  8. When the lid comes off, hit the “Keep Warm/Cancel” button and then hit “Sauté” again and adjust so it’s on the “More” or “High” setting. Bring the pot to a bubble and add in the cornstarch slurry and stir immediately. Then, add in the onion mix packet and let bubble for a minute and then turn the pot to “Keep Warm” so that the bubbles die down
  9. Once the bubbles have mostly subsided, add in the sour cream and Boursin. Stir well until they are both totally melded into the sauce and it will be ready!
  10. Place some noodles in individual bowls and then follow with some the beef and plenty of sauce
  11. Enjoy!

again, I found the recipe here https://pressureluckcooking.com/recipe/instant-pot-beef-stroganoff/, and he isn’t wrong, it is the best stroganoff EVER!!

main dishes · recipes

INSTANT POT TOMATO BASIL SOUP

As usual I have searched the internet to look for sites that have recipes that look like our family would like, and I have found a winner again with this one. I found it here:
https://www.skinnytaste.com/instant-pot-tomato-basil-soup/#l0KVJaxOCVizBLCK.99

This soup is amazing on its own, or enjoyed with a grilled cheese sandwich (who doesn’t love grilled cheese and tomatoe soup)

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup finely diced celery
  • 1 cup finely diced carrots
  • 1 cup finely diced onions
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose or gluten-free flour
  • 3 1/2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth (or vegetable for vegetarians)
  • 1 3/4 cups reduced fat (2%) milk
  • 28 oz can San Marzano whole plum tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Parmesan or Romano cheese rind (optional)
  • 1/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
  • fresh black pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Use the saute button on the Instant Pot, then add the oil and butter, when melted add the celery, carrots and onions; cook 5 to 6 minutes, or until tender.
  2. Add the flour, stir and cook 1 to 2 minutes. Add the broth, milk, and pour the juice of the tomatoes into the Instant Pot, then roughly crush the tomatoes with your hands; add to the pot. Add the thyme, basil, and bay leaves and parmesan rind if using.
  3. Cover and cook high pressure 30 minutes. Quick or natural release, remove the cheese rind and herbs then blend the soup using an immersion blender until smooth (or you can carefully do this in small batches in the blender).
  4. Add the 1/3 cup grated Pecorino cheese, salt and pepper, adjusting to taste.
  5. To serve, ladle into bowls, top each with basil and 1 teaspoon parmesan

again I found this recipe here: https://www.skinnytaste.com/instant-pot-tomato-basil-soup/#l0KVJaxOCVizBLCK.99

main dishes · recipes

Instant pot creamy mushroom wild rice soup

I finally joined the instant pot craze a few months ago. I can’t say enough good things about it. My husband and I haven’t had anything out of it we didn’t like yet.

I have spent a lot of time finding and then tweaking recipes and figured I’d start to share some of them with all of you.

Ingredients:

for the instant pot:

  • 5 med carrots chopped
  • 5 stalks celery chopped
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 cup uncooked wild rice
  • 4 oz cremini mushrooms chopped
  • 4 oz white button mushrooms chopped
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 raw chicken breasts

for stovetop:

  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk

Instructions:

Instant pot:

put all ingredients in the first list into the instant pot. cook for 45min manual, high pressure. quick release

stovetop:

when the soup is done, melt the butter in a saucepan. whisk in the flour. let cook for a bit, add salt and pepper. slowly add milk a little at a time until you have a smooth thickened sauce.

take out chicken breasts and shred

add the chicken back into the instant pot.

mix the creamy sauce into the soup mixture in the instant pot.

I found the original recipe here: https://pinchofyum.com/instant-pot-wild-rice-soup

I just tweaked it a little bit, my husband isn’t a huge fan of garlic, so I really reduced that…

main dishes · recipes

Pork tenderloin stuffed with sundried tomatoes and cream cheese

I have tried many different versions of stuffed pork tenderloins throughout the years and I think I finally came up with the perfect combination.

Ingredients :

1 medium Pork tenderloin

2-3 Tbsp sundried tomatoes packed in oil

1-2 tsp dried thyme

1/4 onion chopped

5-6 button mushrooms sliced

3 cloves garlic minced

4oz cream cheese

1 cup bread crumbs (or 2 slices of bread put through a food processor)

1 package bacon

Directions :

Slice the mushrooms and add to a frying pan with the onions, garlic, thyme (salt & pepper to taste) and sundried tomatoes (with some of the oil). Saute until partially cooked (you want the mushrooms to release more mositure into the pork when it is cooking).

Add the cream cheese and stir until melted, then add the breadcrumbs. Mix well and set aside to cool.

Made a slit in the top of the tenderloin and then make a pocket that goes as far into the ends as you can. Or you can butterfly it and make it into a jelly roll style wrap.

Once the filling mixture is cooled, stuff the pork with it. And then make a basket weave with your bacon and roll it around the pork tenderloin. I use a cookie sheet and parchment paper to make rolling it easier and then this time I left it rolled in the parchment paper and put it in the oven at 350 for about 1/2 hour, then I unwrapped it and left it for about another half hour for the bacon to crisp up.

It turned out so moist.

Definitely worth trying if you like sundried tomatoes…

main dishes · recipes

Chocolate Chili

I found this recipe yesterday and tried it out tonight. I made 1/2 because I didn’t want to waste 2lbs of ground beef in case it wasn’t good. But I can honestly say this is the best chili recipe I have ever tried. I’m generally just “okay” with chili. It’s something my husband loves, so I make it more often that I would like to keep him happy. I eat it once and then he gets all the leftovers. However with this recipe I will be happy to eat it the next day.

Ingredients:

2 pounds ground beef
2 onions, chopped
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cloves garlic,minced
2 jalapeno peppers chopped up
Two 15-ounce cans brown beans in tomatoe sauce, undrained
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Two 15-ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
One 15-ounce can diced tomatoes (I used chili style ones, they have some extra spice in them)
4 cups tomato sauce (I used the red hot chili one)
2 cups beef broth
Optional garnishes: Sour cream, shredded cheese, minced chives

In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the ground beef and cook for 2 minutes. Next, add the onions, chili powder and cumin, and stir together. Add the cocoa, garlic and jalapenos, mix together and cook for 2 minutes. Next, add in the brown beans, cayenne pepper and oregano, and cook for another minute. Add the black beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and broth, cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
Garnish with sour cream, shredded cheese and chives if desired.

I found this recipe here: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/chocolate-chili-recipe-1972465

and just tweaked it a bit.

main dishes · recipes

Chocolate Chili

I found this recipe yesterday and tried it out tonight. I made 1/2 because I didn’t want to waste 2lbs of ground beef in case it wasn’t good. But I can honestly say this is the best chili recipe I have ever tried. I’m generally just “okay” with chili. It’s something my husband loves, so I make it more often that I would like to keep him happy. I eat it once and then he gets all the leftovers. However with this recipe I will be happy to eat it the next day.

Ingredients:

2 pounds ground beef
2 onions, chopped
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cloves garlic,minced
2 jalapeno peppers chopped up
Two 15-ounce cans brown beans in tomatoe sauce, undrained
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Two 15-ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
One 15-ounce can diced tomatoes (I used chili style ones, they have some extra spice in them)
4 cups tomato sauce (I used the red hot chili one)
2 cups beef broth
Optional garnishes: Sour cream, shredded cheese, minced chives

In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the ground beef and cook for 2 minutes. Next, add the onions, chili powder and cumin, and stir together. Add the cocoa, garlic and jalapenos, mix together and cook for 2 minutes. Next, add in the brown beans, cayenne pepper and oregano, and cook for another minute. Add the black beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and broth, cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
Garnish with sour cream, shredded cheese and chives if desired.

I found this recipe here: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/chocolate-chili-recipe-1972465

and just tweaked it a bit.

main dishes · recipes

Spaghetti sauce

This an old recipe that I found in an Italian cookbook that I have tweaked over the years and is now something I think is fantastic.

Ingredients:

1 lb ground beef
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped green pepper (I have used other colors of peppers and it turns out well)
1 clove garlic minced
2 10 3/4ox can of tomato soup
16 oz tomatoe sauce
1 can mushrooms
2 bay leafs (I have made without and it’s fine)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp basil
1/4 tsp rosemary
1/4 tsp thyme
pepper to taste

Directions:

Brown meat and drain excess fat. Add in all vegetables and saute until softened. Add rest of ingredients and simmer for 30min.

Serve over cooked spaghetti, spaghetti squash or quinoa.

main dishes · recipes

Greek pizza with spinach, sundried tomatoes and olives

This is a fantastic switch from our normal pepperoni and ham pizza. It is meatless as is, but it is also great with shredded chicken added to it. I add it in the first step when I do decide to add it.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup mayonnaise
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup crumbled feta cheese, divided
1 (12 inch) pre-baked Italian pizza crust
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon oil from the sun-dried tomatoes
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 cups baby spinach leaves
1/2 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced

Directions:

Adjust oven rack to lowest position, and heat oven to 450 degrees. Mix mayonnaise, garlic and 1/2 cup feta in a small bowl. Place pizza crust on a cookie sheet; spread mayonnaise mixture over pizza, then top with tomatoes, olives and oregano (and chicken if using). Bake until heated through and crisp, about 10 minutes.
Toss spinach and onion with the 1 Tbsp. sun-dried tomato oil. Top hot pizza with spinach mixture and remaining 1/2 cup feta cheese. Return to oven and bake until cheese melts, about 2 minutes longer. Cut into 6 slices and serve.

main dishes · recipes

Pasta with shrimp and sundried tomatoes 

This is the compilation of a few recipes we have tried throughout the years. We finally have something that we think is just right. This makes enough for 2 of us for 1 meal and 1 lunch the next day (adjust according to the amount of servings you want). I would count it as 4 normal sized servings.  

Ingredients:

10-15 shrimp (more if you like) chopped into bite sized pieces

1 chicken breast chopped up

1 tsp oregano 

1 tsp red hot pepper flakes

1 8oz pckg fresh spinach

1 cup chopped button mushrooms

1 medium onion chopped

1 garlic clove minced

1 cup dried sundried tomatoes 

1 cup feta cheese crumbled

1 cup Parmesan cheese

4 servings of pasta (we usually use spaghetti) 

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Saute shrimp, chicken, onions, mushrooms, garlic and sundried tomatoes in a drizzle of olive oil or butter. Add in spices as you are sautĂ©ing the rest. Once shrimp and chicken are almost cooked add in the package of spinach. Cover and let wilt down. 

Once the spinach is wilted add the cooked pasta (undercook pasta by 1-2 min) with a bit of the pasta water. Add in most of the crumbled feta cheese & Parmesan cheese (reserve some for garnish). Let the flavours meld while mixing and cooking for a couple of minutes. Serve with remaining cheese.