Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fruity Meat? Pork Chops with Raspberry Sauce

I love all the different possibilities when you combine fruit and meat for the main course for dinner: Mango Chicken, Apple Pork, Ham with Pineapple, etc! So far I am yet to really find one my family is 100% on board with (I would settle for 70% though since I know pleasing them all in one meal only happens on Saturday morning breakfasts and Thanksgiving). So, came across a new one that I thought I would try. Seems to have good reviews and I am thinking the sauce is better than mushy cooked fruit, since my 6yr old's complaint is usually about the texture.

Pork Chops with Raspberry Sauce
INGREDIENTS (Serves 4 - Or in our cast 2 adults and 3 small kids)

* 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
* 1/2 teaspoon dried sage, crushed
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/4 teaspoon pepper
* 4 (4 ounce) boneless pork loin chops
* 1 tablespoon butter
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1/4 cup seedless raspberry jam
* 2 tablespoons orange juice
* 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
* 4 sprigs fresh thyme (optional)


1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees F (95 degrees C). In a small bowl, combine crushed thyme, sage, salt, and pepper. Rub evenly over pork chops.
2. Melt butter and olive oil in a nonstick skillet. Cook pork chops for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, turning once. Remove from skillet and keep warm in preheated oven.
3. In the skillet, combine raspberry jam, orange juice, and vinegar. Bring to a boil, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until sauce is reduced to desired consistency (sauce will thicken as it cools). Spoon sauce in a pool onto a serving plate, and top with pork chops. Garnish with sprigs of thyme.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Recyled Storage

If you've changed as many diapers as I have, you have a few extra of those plastic baby wipes boxes sitting around. I always feel bad throwing them away so they've been stacking up and filling up with the junk and clutter that seems to collect. I finally decided it was time to tackle my 'office' shelf clutter problem.

How I Did It:
Step 1: Remove lids and spray paint black
Step 2: Glue on some autumn leaves the kids found
Step 3: Divide & Conquer - this means each box if designated for a type of clutter: rouge CDs and DVDs, Office Supplies, Notecards and Business Cards, Cords & Headphones, etc
Step 4: Add Cheap Halloween Decorations for a little color and fun

The result is hidden clutter and recycled junk disguised as something else :) I still hate this shelf, but it' a little better and now the kids get to have the Desk Apprentice for their toys which is lot's of fun for them.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Fall Means Yummy Foods

I think sometime in June or July I decided I wasn't 'cooking' anymore. But now that it's fall again I feel inspired to make some warm cozy meals. Here is one of my favorite semi-homemade dishes that makes a great lunch with leftovers.

Easy Chicken Noodle Soup
3/4 lb chicken
1 can Chicken Broth
1 Package Buitoni Linguine Noodles
10-12 Leaves Chopped Basil
2-3 Cloves Pressed Garlic
Mediterranean Spiced Sea Salt
Pepper and Salt or Garlic Salt to Taste

Slightly sear the chicken in a pan with some oil and spiced sea salt.
Add 1 cup of water and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
In a medium pot add chicken broth, 2 cans water and chicken with the 'juice' from the pan.
Add the linguine, basil, garlic and seasoning
Stir, cover and bring to a boil (3-5 minutes)

DONE! And even the kids like it.