Orange/Soy Marinated Pork Chops with Pineapple Mango Salsa

Between the previous pancetta and now the pork chops… I guess you could say I’m on a pig-kick, so I think I’m due for a break from the other white meat for awhile.

Billy mentioned pineapple salsa and it gave me the idea to make a pineapple mango salsa to pair with something a bit more bland. Since I was sick of cooking chicken breast I opted for pork chops (they were also on sale, win!)

They were out of this world!

No, but really… you’re oinkin’ for this recipe… so check it out after the jump…

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Tossed together a delicious wine & dine with my wonderful boyfriend on Friday evening. I picked up some fresh pancetta at the Italian deli in Chelsea Market to make pasta alla carbonara with the homemade ricotta I made the previous night.
What you’ll need:
4 ounces of pancetta, diced into chunks
1 small shallot, diced finely
1 clove of garlic, chopped finely
3/4 cup frozen peas
3 eggs
1/2 cup of ricotta (if you don’t have ricotta, use pecorino-romano or parmesan) 
Salt & pepper to taste
1lb pasta (of your choice), prepared per instructions (add salt to the water)
Before you start anything, prepare the pot/water for the pasta and begin heating to a boil. While that’s starting, in a large skillet over medium heat, cook the pancetta.
While the pancetta is cooking combine the egg with half the cheese, salt & pepper, whisk thoroughly.
Once the pancetta is cooked, remove from pan and drain on a paper towel (you don’t have to drain it but it was nice to rid the pancetta of the extra grease).
Add shallots to  the same skillet & saute until tender. Add garlic & saute for 30  seconds.
When the pasta has about a minute left for cooking, add the frozen peas  to the boiling pot (you will strain these with the pasta).
Remove skillet from heat and add the hot  pasta to the pan with the  shallots & garlic.
Add the egg mixture & stir thoroughly until  creamy (be careful not to over cook the eggs - you don’t want them to  scramble). Add pancetta, parsley and remaining cheese - taste & re-season if needed. Serve immediately. Enjoy.

(photo credit: my super awesome sous-chef)

Tossed together a delicious wine & dine with my wonderful boyfriend on Friday evening. I picked up some fresh pancetta at the Italian deli in Chelsea Market to make pasta alla carbonara with the homemade ricotta I made the previous night.

What you’ll need:

  • 4 ounces of pancetta, diced into chunks
  • 1 small shallot, diced finely
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped finely
  • 3/4 cup frozen peas
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of ricotta (if you don’t have ricotta, use pecorino-romano or parmesan)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1lb pasta (of your choice), prepared per instructions (add salt to the water)

Before you start anything, prepare the pot/water for the pasta and begin heating to a boil. While that’s starting, in a large skillet over medium heat, cook the pancetta.

While the pancetta is cooking combine the egg with half the cheese, salt & pepper, whisk thoroughly.

Once the pancetta is cooked, remove from pan and drain on a paper towel (you don’t have to drain it but it was nice to rid the pancetta of the extra grease).

Add shallots to the same skillet & saute until tender. Add garlic & saute for 30 seconds.

When the pasta has about a minute left for cooking, add the frozen peas to the boiling pot (you will strain these with the pasta).

Remove skillet from heat and add the hot pasta to the pan with the shallots & garlic.

Add the egg mixture & stir thoroughly until creamy (be careful not to over cook the eggs - you don’t want them to scramble). Add pancetta, parsley and remaining cheese - taste & re-season if needed. Serve immediately. Enjoy.

(photo credit: my super awesome sous-chef)

Creamy Homemade Ricotta

Apologies for the lack of cheesy photo - but I made homemade ricotta Thursday evening and it was delicious… and addicting. I’ll be making this a lot more often now, especially with chocolate and sugar for a dessert mousse.

I stumbled across the recipe over at Food52. Check it out below:

Makes 2 cups
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Add the ingredients to a 4-quart pot. Bring to a very gentle boil over medium heat. Meanwhile, line a sieve or fine mesh strainer with a few layers of cheesecloth and place it over a deep bowl or pot.

Once the curds begin to separate from the whey (you’ll see little specks of white bob to the surface), stir gently and set heat to the lowest setting (see NOTE). Cook for 2 more minutes, then remove pot from heat and set on an unlit back burner for at least 30 minutes, and up to one hour. (this will help the curds further develop).

Gently ladle the curds into the cheesecloth-lined strainer (this helps produce a fluffier, creamier curd, than pouring it into the strainer). When all the curds have been spooned into the bowl, pull the cheesecloth up the sides to loosely cover the ricotta in the strainer. Let sit for 10 minutes to drain (this will yield a very moist ricotta. If using for a cake recipe, you may want to let it drain longer for a drier consistency).

Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator for up to three days.

NOTE: I’ve learned it likes to be left alone to produce the highest yield, so resist the temptation to stir it frequently once the curds begin to separate from the whey. One stir is enough, and if you’re curious, you can dip the spoon in the pot once or twice to see how the curds are developing.

Blackberry Jam Almond Bars

Went to a lovely housewarming party this past weekend and decided to take a jab at these Blackberry Jam Almond Bars I stumbled upon over at 17 and Baking (Elissa is amazing if you haven’t checked out her blog yet). I think she yoinked the recipe from Sophistimom but, either way, I’m giving her the credit for posting the recipe and for the image above since I didn’t get a chance to snap a photo.

Anyway, they were super easy to make and came out delightful. The drizzle of frosting added that perfect bit of extra almond flavor which paired well with the tartness of the blackberry jam.

We be Jammin’

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Lemon/Tarragon salmon fillet with a side of brown rice, broccoli and butternut squash. 
I’m a huge fan of seafood, salmon being one of my favorite fish to devour. Tonight I decided to squeeze some lemon over the fillet and rub in a bit of black pepper and Tarragon - what the french call the “King of Herbs,” and for good reason! If you haven’t used it yet, it’s fantastic for chicken, eggs, fish and even cream-based dishes. No kitchen is complete without it.
Simply sauteed this sucker in a little bit of extra virgin olive oil (about 4-5 minutes on each side) while the rice boiled and the veggies steamed. The veggies were half-off at Stop ‘n Shop (yes they were frozen but who cares? They’re veggies!). The brown rice: Uncle Ben’s in those little 10 minute boil bags, leaving me some for lunch tomorrow!
Scrumptious and incredibly healthy.

Lemon/Tarragon salmon fillet with a side of brown rice, broccoli and butternut squash.

I’m a huge fan of seafood, salmon being one of my favorite fish to devour. Tonight I decided to squeeze some lemon over the fillet and rub in a bit of black pepper and Tarragon - what the french call the “King of Herbs,” and for good reason! If you haven’t used it yet, it’s fantastic for chicken, eggs, fish and even cream-based dishes. No kitchen is complete without it.

Simply sauteed this sucker in a little bit of extra virgin olive oil (about 4-5 minutes on each side) while the rice boiled and the veggies steamed. The veggies were half-off at Stop ‘n Shop (yes they were frozen but who cares? They’re veggies!). The brown rice: Uncle Ben’s in those little 10 minute boil bags, leaving me some for lunch tomorrow!

Scrumptious and incredibly healthy.