Thursday, January 29, 2009

CEIMB - Sage Rubbed Pork Chops with Warm Apple Slaw

Well I am so excited because this week 's recipe was chosen by none other than moi! I feel like I just joined the CEIMB picking the recipe is a BIG DEAL! I picked the sage-rubbed pork chops with warm apple slaw because I have been eyeing the recipe just about every time I open up the cookbook. I had made a version of the pork chops before and thought they were fabulous, but I had never made the pork chops and the slaw together. And I must say...I was not disappointed. So, what did everyone think about the pork chops??? I can't wait to read and find out!

Overall, the pork chops were great. The slaw was good...but next time, I would probably go back to just making the pork chops....or maybe I could alter the slaw recipe a bit.
I did however, think that this recipe was really good and very easy to make. There are definitely a couple things I would change, but they are very minor things. Mostly, I wish I would have waited to add the apples until closer to the end so that they remained firm...and not completely disintegrated in the sauce. You think I would have thought about this when I was cooking on Sunday...but after making veggie soup and a ham and spinach quiche...apparently I was tired of cooking! Dare I say such thing on a cooking blog?!?! Please fellow bloggers, do not disown me. Or maybe I had been brainwashed by the cats...because they were much more interested in the pork than the slaw! I guess we will go with the former.
I hope everyone enjoyed this recipe! I sure did. Thanks for letting me be a part of the CEIMB blog! Its so much fun cooking with everyone each week!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

CEIMB - Chicken Cacciatore

This week's recipe of chicken cacciatore was chosen by Peggy of Pantry Revisited. Peggy and I work together so I was super excited about fixing a recipe that one of our own picked! Well after hearing that this recipe was a little bit bland as fixed per the recipe, I had to figure out a way to spice things up. So, instead of regular tomatoes, I used Rotel tomatoes. After all, Rotel tomatoes may be my favorite canned food item...ever.

The can of Rotel wasn't quite as large as the recipe called for, so I added a bit of tomato paste for some extra flavor. Also, I used baby bella mushrooms instead of white mushrooms. Otherwise, I essentially followed the recipe -- shocking, I know! Well, actually I slightly reduced the amount of red pepper flakes. I didn't want the chicken to be too spicy to eat!

While the rotel made the dish a little bit spicy, I thought it gave the cacciatore a great flavor. It definitely wasn't bland. Thanks Peggy for picking a GREAT, hearty recipe that was easy to make on a weeknight. I really like it, as did the cats, so I will definitely be making this recipe again.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

CEIMB - Beef Tenderloin with Rosemary and Chocolate

Let me start out by saying hands down this is the best CEIMB recipe that I have made so far! Seriously, I absolutely loved it. This week's recipe of Beef Tenderloin with Rosemary and Chocolate was chosen by Amanda of Beckett Bakes It.

I substituted filets for a whole beef tenderloin (mostly because that was all Publix had and I refuse to go to multiple grocery stores for a weeknight meal!) Also, I only put 1 tsp of the cocoa powder in the sauce instead of the called for 1 TBS. The sauce was already so good, so I didn't want to spoil it with the cocoa.

Overall, the recipe was very easy to make. I let my sauce cook for about an hour and a half and it had barely reduced, so it was probably a bit runnier than the recipe envisioned. Also, I followed the internal temperature guidelines in the recipe and it resulted in much closer to well done beef than medium rare. Good thing I had the sauce!

Thanks Amanda for choosing a GREAT recipe! I am so glad I made the recipe this week!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

CEIMB Fried Rice

You like fried rice? I like fried rice. This week's recipe was Tofo and Edamame Fried Rice chosen by Running with Food. I made a few substitutions with the recipe. I substituted chicken for the tofu. Also, I left out the corn and added carrots instead. I thought the fried rice tasted great--but I managed to cook my rice too long.

After all the traveling over the last week I still haven't really got my head back on strait. So, I completely missed the part of the recipe that said to cook the edamame according to package directions. Of course I realized this only after I added the edamame to the pan full of browning garlic, ginger, green onions, etc. So, to make sure the edamame actually got cooked, I dumped the rice on top of it and let it steam for a few minutes. This worked to get the edamame cooked, but resulted in somewhat mushy rice. Maybe the rice would have been mushy anyways...who knows. I'm not really a fan of rice so I rarely cook it. Maybe brown rice is always a bit mushy??? Thoughts?

Thanks for picking a great recipe that was really easy to make on a weeknight!

Oh, and I almost forgot. The answers to the questions from last week and new questions.

Question No. 1 - Biscotti (I thought this one was a dead giveaway since we made biscotti last week!)
Question No. 2 - Cornstarch
Question No. 3 - 3 Tablespoons

New Questions.
Question No. 4 - What "pizza herb" has a peppery flavor and a hint of pine?

Question No. 5 - What course follows the salad course and is served before the dessert in European-style dining?

Question No. 6 - What category of nutrient has the most calories per gram - fat carbohydrate, protein or alcohol?

Fried Rice

Seeing as how I have spent the last week on the road, I am a little bit behind on my cooking. I am going to make the fried rice tonight and will post about it later. I've heard its supper yummy so I am looking forward to trying it out!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

CEIMB - Chocolate Cherry-Almond Biscotti

The recipe this week was chosen by Enjoying my Favorite Things. I love love biscotti, but have never made it before so I was really excited about the recipe. Plus, having fallen into a super big black hole (aka work and Christmas whatnots) and having been MIA over the last few weeks, I was excited to jump back into the blogging world.

The recipe was really easy to make. My only issue was that I used extra virgin olive oil since it was all I had in the pantry. However, the strong olive oil taste really comes through in the finished biscotti. Otherwise, no major catastrophes on this recipe. In fact, I am sitting here enjoying some biscotti and coffee while I type.

Thanks to Enjoying My Favorite Foods for picking a great recipe!

Also, one of my super cool friends gave me a game for Christmas called "Foodie Fight"! Its essentially trivial pursuit for food lovers! Seeing as how there aren't too many people in my life that love all things related to cooking, baking and food - I figured I would get a little game going on the blog! So for fun each week I will post some questions, we can have a virtual food fight and perhaps we will learn a little too.

Question No. 1. (well start with a gimme)
What dipping cookies are traditionally served with Italian vin santo (holy wine)?
Question No. 2
What thickener will actually thin under conditions of too much heat, vigorous stirring, or a too-long cooking time?
Question No. 3
How much juice will a medium lemon yield - about 2 tablespoons, 3 tablespoons or 1/4 cup?

Happy New Year everyone!