Pork

Giant pork & Potato Roll with Grainy Dijon

Giant pork & Potato Roll with Grainy Dijon

When my Mum and Sister came to visit a couple of weeks ago, they gave me an English cooking magazine that was full of gourmet christmas recipes which have gotten me SO excited for my all-time favorite season coming up. One of the recipes in there was for a pork roulade with sage and apples, and it looked so simple and delicious, I thought it would make a perfect fall-time week-night dinner. So I started making it, and realized, I had actually been following a recipe for samosas instead! I was already in the middle of sautéing some onion and potatoes when I realized, but instead of wasting them and starting from scratch, I decided to just “roll” with it, improvise, and see what I could come up with! Sometimes all it takes is making a little mistake to lead you back in the right direction.

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Spaghetti & Meatballs

Spaghetti & Meatballs

One of my ALL TIME favorite things to eat in the whole world is spaghetti and meatballs. I have pretty much been obsessed since I was knee high and called it bascetti! My problem has been that my husband doesn’t like spaghetti at all…. probably because I made it for him one too many times back in our newly wed days when that’s pretty much the only thing I knew how to make. So when he was out of town the other week on work I decided my kiddos and I would have a spaghetti and meatball party without him.

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Pork Tenderloin with Balsamic-Pomegranate Reduction

Pork Tenderloin with Balsamic-Pomegranate Reduction

Of all the tricky, challenging dishes I have cooked in the past, Pork Tenderloin has to be one of my greatest nemesis’! I have tried several different recipes in the past (including stuffed tenderloin, brines, and roasting) but I always mess it up by undercooking it, and then when I try to save it, the tenderloin gets all dry and tough. Then today I cooked the most PERFECT, moist, juicy tenderloin that I almost couldn’t believe it came from my kitchen! What’s even weirder is that it didn’t require brining or stuffing or anything complicated… just simply seasoning, browning and finishing off in the oven. The balsamic pomegranate sauce was also the perfect accompaniment! Its sweetness balanced out the saltiness of the pork so well, and it looked so beautiful and gourmet, even though it was completely effortless to make. I served the pork and the sauce with garlic mashed potatoes and candied carrots, and the meal was so delicious, that I actually caught myself “mmmm-ing” my way through it at the dinner table! It was just THAT good!! Probably one of my new favorite dishes–so here it is: {adapted loosely from WBNG}

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Prawn Gumbo with Chorizo

Prawn Gumbo with Chorizo

Gumbo has been appearing all over my favorite cooking sites since this season began, and has really peaked my curiosity. Until yesterday I had never tried Gumbo before in my life, and had no idea what the dish even consisted of–but what I did know was that it was a classic and popular American dish, and so of course, I had to try it and see what all the hype was about. The ingredients listed in a traditional cajun gumbo reminded me a lot of the Spanish Paella I recently made, so I did a little research. I found that “gumbo” is a metaphor for the “melting pot” of cultures found in southern louisiana (French, Italian, German, native Americans, African Slaves… and of course, Spanish) which kind of explains that a little bit. As a Geography major this really fascinates me! I’m going to have to go read up more about the history of the southern states just for fun after I post this recipe!

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Black Cherry, Mozzarella & Prosciutto Pizza with Arugula

Black Cherry, Mozzarella & Prosciutto Pizza with Arugula

Yesterday I invented my own pizza combination that was to die for delicious! I originally wanted to try making a fig, prosciutto and mozzarella pizza, which is so classic, and seems to be so popular (especially as figs are in season right now)… but they didn’t have any figs in my grocery store, which is why I decided to substitute black cherry preserves instead. What’s so amazing about this recipe, is how well the flavors all work together–the super sweet jam, the salty prosciutto, and the bitter arugula with a touch of pepper just gives a perfect combination with a lot going on… and it’s so versatile too, since ANY sweet jam would work just as well!

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