Saturday, June 26, 2010

Spicy Pulled Pork

I looked all over for pork shoulder and couldn't find it pre-packaged. James discovered for me that pork butt and pork shoulder are interchangeable (one and the same?), so I looked for pork butt. Finally I asked the butcher at the meat counter and he wandered back to the fridge, took out a giant cut of meat, and sliced me off a 5.9 lb. pork butt/shoulder.

I evidently need a larger food processor if I want to cook anything else for a crowd. I made this for our dinner for 8 (church) group last night, and I was worried I wouldn't have enough room for all the ingredients in my 2 cup food chopper. It worked, barely, and I made a mess pouring it out as it was sloshing out the top and dripping through the middle.

The pork was really tender after 6 hours in the oven and stayed moist. I'm still letting my dutch oven soak, so hopefully all the blackened juices and spices will come off alright. Everyone seemed to enjoy the meat and voiced their appreciation for the meal. I thought it was good, though the flavor didn't seem that strong. The limes were a nice touch. Even with 6 other people dining with us, we still have a lot left over. It's a great dish for a crowd and good with pico de gallo, tortillas, and guacamole.

Sour Cream Pancakes and Breakfast Bowls

A couple of weeks ago I decided, on Sunday morning, that I had enough time to make breakfast. Unfortunately, I miscalculated and we ran out the door for church before the breakfast bowls were cool enough to eat. James was disappointed since the sausage-bacon-egg-cheese dish sounded very promising.

Later in the week, I bought English muffins and served the breakfast "bowls" McMuffin style - a very thick egg McMuffin. James approved, though he was certain they would have tasted better fresh. Sorry, no pictures.

Today being Saturday I have plenty of time for breakfast! And yet these pancakes were fast and easy to make - I should have made these Sunday and the breakfast bowls on a Saturday. The pancakes were very simple, and since I am used to making pancakes I had almost all the ingredients assembled before re-reading the recipe. I was surprised to note that there was no milk, but I suppose the sour cream replaces that.

We decided that they have a strange spongy texture, a little dense for my tastes. I prefer my pancakes light and fluffy, more airy. Also, the recipe says that it makes 12 4-inch pancakes, so I halved the recipe. My pancakes must be bigger in diameter since the batter only produced 3 1/2 (small one) pancakes. At least that was enough for James and me. They were good, but not amazing, and they're not replacing my regular pancake recipe.


This meatloaf was nothing spectacular, in my opinion, and sub-par in James'. He said it tasted like I added a cup of sugar to ketchup for the sauce. I said that wasn't far from the truth. He asked that since it was PW Meatloaf did that mean it was half beef and half sausage? No, but that's not a bad idea...

Never having used actual bread slices, I wondered at the quality difference between packaged bread crumbs and bread slices. I didn't notice any difference in flavor, taste, texture, and it's easier for me to use bread crumbs. I lined a broiler pan with foil, as she suggests, but still had to scrub the top rack part. I suppose it does drain nicely so you don't have to pour out the grease as I usually do when cooking meatloaf in a metal or glass loaf pan.

Overall, we will stick with our old favorite meatloaf recipes. Sorry, PW.

Angel Sugar Cookies

These were delicious, definitely melt-in-your-mouth and fall-apart-in-your-hand goodness. I haven't made a lot of sugar cookies and the ones I usually make are the sturdy, thick kind good for loading up with icing and sprinkles to decorate for Christmas. These were completely the opposite. PW says they don't travel well, so plan on eating them at home. We ate a lot at home, but the recipe made plenty to share. So I layered them between wax paper sheets in a casserole dish and toted them to Bible study and school.
Not for lack of popularity but more because I was trying to savor them, we had leftovers a couple days later. Unfortunately, they didn't keep their fall-apart goodness and were a bit stale. They are best served fresh!

Chicken Pot Pie

I had to change up this recipe just because James doesn't eat peas. He says it's his dad's fault. His dad never liked peas and never ate them, so, as a boy, he decided that if his dad didn't have to eat them, he didn't either. He would pick every single one out if I put them in something. So I just use broccoli in my chicken pot pies.

My mixture was too soupy and I had to scoop out a lot of liquid for it to be the consistency I wanted in the dish. Not sure what went wrong there, but the crust was great. I usually put a whole crust on chicken pot pie (line the bottom then put a crust on top). We really liked the fluffy pie crust and the new ratio of chicken filling to crust.

Marmalade Muffins

So I'm glad we're going to start a more heath-conscious cookbook but sad to say good-bye to PW so soon. I bought the cookbook late, I suppose, and I haven't been consistent in blogging. But I've really enjoyed the recipes in this book, and I hope y'all don't mind seeing some more of them as I catch up on posting.

Looking through previous posts I realized I never wrote about these tasty muffins. I made them for a brunch at school and hardly got to taste them since they disappeared once I left them unattended in the conference room. I mistakenly didn't even save some for James and myself before I took the batch to school.

These were fun and easy, and I liked the glaze, though at first I had put them on a plate and drizzled them. When my first dozen or so had soggy stumps I decided it would be better to drizzle over the cooling rack. Much more balanced in glaze-y-ness.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Our Next Cookbook!

Well, the vote is in...from the comments left on the last post and from some phone conversations I had with a few of you it seems Ellie Krieger is the winner! We are gonna go with her book that had the most 5 star reviews on
It is titled:
"The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes For A Healthy Life"
It is the book where she has on an orange sweater on the front.
For some reason the Amazon link wont paste here in the post, but I will stick it in the comment section.

Let's give everyone a couple weeks to get their books, Amazon has it for 18.99 with free shipping on an order of $25 or more. It also has used ones starting at 9.99 plus shipping. has the books priced at $11.91 plus shipping. So, there are a few options out there. I was gonna try running my Half Price Books and seeing what their price is. Let me know if you have any questions.
And as usual, feel free to invite any friends or family members to cook through the book with us. If you know of any of our fellow bloggers that don't check the blog often please pass on this info so everyone is in the loop! --Carissa

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Our Next Cookbook???

I didn't hear from a majority of the group, but the ones that responded seem ready to jump into another book. So....what kind of ideas do you guys have? I liked Erin's idea of Ellie Krieger. She has two cookbooks out...check them out on Amazon when you get a chance and see what you think. One of them has over 2oo reviews. Robin Miller is another one that was mentioned. Cooking Light has many cookbooks out too... There is even a low-fat Betty Crocker! Anyway, there are alot of options out there, tell us your opinion! --Carissa