Thursday, January 28, 2016

TOMAHAWK PORK CHOPS WITH CHEDDAR CHEESE GRITS

Hominy grits are a southern favorite, although it is more often shorted to just 'grits'. Hominy is dried and ground white or yellow corn kernels from which the hull and germ have been removed.




2 thick tomahawk pork chops, trimmed of any excess fat
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 T avocado oil
½ cup onion, diced
½ fresh thyme or ¼ t dried thyme
1 T flour
½ cup Marsala or white wine
1 cup chicken broth

Grits
2 cups water
2 cups whole milk
1 t sea salt
1 cup stone ground white or yellow grits (not instant)
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
2 T unsalted butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Sprinkle both sides of chops with salt and pepper. 

Heat the oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.
Add the pork chops and brown on each side for about 3 minutes.
Remove and set aside on a plate. 
Pour out most of the grease from the skillet and add the onion and thyme. 
Sauté for about 5 minutes then mix in the flour and cook another 2 minutes. 
Add the wine and chicken broth.
Simmer until it thickens slightly. 
Place the browned chops and any liquid that has accumulated into the skillet.

Cover tightly with a oven-proof lid or aluminum foil and bake in oven for 20 minutes.
Center of pork chops should register 140 to 145 degrees F.

While chops are baking, in a medium saucepan, bring water, milk, and salt to a boil.
Gradually whisk in grits, reduce heat to the lowest setting, cover and simmer, about 15 to 18 minutes, stirring frequently.
Remove from heat, stir in cheddar cheese and butter. 


To serve, spoon grits onto 2 warm bowls or plates, add a pork chop and pour some of the gravy, through a strainer, onto each and serve.

Serves 2







Thursday, January 21, 2016

RYE BREAD

You will be surprised how easy this bread is to make—and no chemicals or preservatives added! This bread is also delicious toasted with cream cheese, smoked salmon, red onions, and capers    


1 ¾ cups warm water
1 T active dry yeast
2 T honey
2 cups bread flour
2 ½ cups dark rye flour
3 T dry potato flakes
2 t sea salt
2 T caraway seeds
3 T dill pickle juice

1 T melted butter

Pour warm water into the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with a dough hook.
Sprinkle in the yeast and let proof for 10 minutes.

Add the honey, bread flour, 1 cup of the rye flour, potato flakes, sea salt, caraway seeds, and pickle juice.

Turn on mixer and slowly mix while adding the rest of the rye flour, a little at a time.
Mix for about 3 to 4 minutes, then turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for a couple more minutes.

Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a pizza pan and set aside in a warm place to rise for 1 hour.

Shape dough into an oblong shape and place on a lightly oiled baking sheet.
Let rise another 20 to 30 minutes.

Remove dough and preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

With a very sharp knife, cut diagonal slits on top of dough.
Brush with melted butter and bake in oven for 40 minutes.

Remove from oven and place on a rack to cool.




Sunday, January 17, 2016

IZETTA'S OLD-FASHIONED POTATO SOUP

This classic potato soup is so comforting on a cold winter's night and takes just under 30 minutes to make. You can substitute the bacon for ham or leave it out.



6 strips thin bacon, diced

2 T unsalted butter
1 medium onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
3 stalks celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
8 cups chicken stock
2 T softened, unsalted butter
3 T all-purpose flour
2 cups whole milk or evaporated milk
1 T freeze-dried or minced fresh parsley
Pinch of dried thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cook bacon in a soup pot over medium heat until crisp.
Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a bowl and pour out most of the bacon grease.

Over medium heat, add the butter and sauté the onion, carrots, and celery for 5 minutes. 
Add the garlic and sauté another minute.
Add the potatoes and pour in the chicken stock.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes.

Stir the softened butter into the flour and spoon into the soup.
Let simmer another couple of minutes.
Add the milk, parsley, and thyme.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Ladle into warm soup bowls and garnish with some bacon.

Serves 4





Monday, January 11, 2016

GO BACK TO BED BEEF STEW

I chose the name for this hearty beef stew after hearing about the name of a recipe from the old cookbook, "The I Hate To Cook Book". My reason for naming this "Go Back To Bed Beef Stew" instead of "Stay Abed Stew" is, you have to get out of bed to put the stew together, and then you can go back to bed for hours.


2 ½ lbs stewing beef or chuck roast, cut into 1 ½ inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 T avocado oil
1 bag frozen pearl onions or 2 onions, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup red wine
2 T tomato paste
1 T Worcestershire sauce
Pinch of allspice
3 bay leaves
1 sprig fresh thyme or 1 t dried thyme
4 cups (1 qt) beef stock or broth

5 carrots, peeled and diagonally cut into 1 inch chunks
1 lb new potatoes, cut in half
3 T unsalted butter, softened
3 T all-purpose flour
1 cup frozen peas

Dry beef with paper towels, then generously season with salt and pepper. 
In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. 
Brown the beef in three batches then remove and set aside.

In the same pot, lower the heat to medium, add the onions and garlic and cook another minute.
Add the wine to deglaze the pot, stirring up all the brown bits sticking to the bottom of the pot.
Add the tomato paste, Worcestershire, allspice, bay leaves, thyme, and beef broth.

Return the meat to the pot, cover and place in a 250 degree F oven for 4 hours.

Remove from oven and stir in the carrots and potatoes. 
Place back in oven for another 2 hours. 
After 2 hours, place on top of stove over medium-low heat and remove lid.
In a small bowl stir the flour into the butter to make a smooth paste.
Add to the stew and stir in.
Stir in peas and cook for 5 minutes. 

Ladle into bowls and serve with hot rolls.

Serves 4