Saturday, September 3, 2011

Something Old, Lots of New and Go Bucks!

No - this is not our wedding anniversary (as if I would cook on that day anyway) nor are we renewing our vows. And for the record, I'm not sporting any blue.

The boys headed down to the Ohio State game so I decided (and was partially inspired by the Crock Pot Girls on Facebook - not following but a bunch of my friends are) to whip out the crock pot and some ribs I had laying around. Hence - the "old" - because I've used my crock pot countless times. After the first little snafu of burning everything in the pot, I've "mastered" the pot enough to not burn down our house.

The new is several things. One, when searching for a side, I was going to make healthier cheesy potatoes. But, seeing that it is 100 degrees today and I didn't feel like dealing with the oven in my un-air conditioned house, that recipe was re-filed and instead tried, for the first time, a pearl barley recipe. I have never cooked barley before, but according to Health magazine (where the recipe is sourced from), barley is a "food with benefit" because it is a great source of resistant starch, which is considered a type of dietary fiber and is good for intestinal health. (Not an expert - just based on my Internet research. May or may not be accurate.)

Another new is that I tried raw "Chi Zee" (whatever that means) raw kale chips today. Impulse buy at the grocery store. Um - delish peeps. Go for it. Just read the labels - there are some out there with a lot of sodium b/c of added flavors. I am going to look for a recipe to make them on my own - I know there are tons out there. I guess kale has a ton of health benefits - lowers cholesterol, can protect again cancer, fights inflammation, helps detox the body, etc.

Finally - the last new is that today officially marks the beginning of college football. I KNOW it actually started on Thursday, but with this being Ohio State's first game (super impressive, btw), it is MY beginning of the new season. I bleed scarlet and gray - GO BUCKS!

Best Asian-Style Ribs
Source: Crock-Pot Slow Cooker Recipe Card Collection (2007)

  • 2 full racks of baby back pork ribs, split into 3 sections
  • 6oz hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh ginger (didn't use fresh)
  • 1/2 c. maraschino cherries (weird, right?)
  • 1/2 c. rice wine vinegar
  • Water to cover
  • 4 green onions, chopped (skipped - didn't feel like it)
  • Combine all ingredients except onions. Cover. Cook on low for 6-7 hours or high for 3-3.5 hours. Sprinkle with onions before serving.
(I have no clue what the nutrionals are on this. Not healthy - sorry MV - didn't eat too much though)

Pearl Barley with Peas and Edamame
Source: Health magazine, March 2011

  • 1 c. pearl barley
  • 1 c. frozen shelled edamame
  • 1 c. frozen green peas
  • 1 c. fresh spinach
  • 2-1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1-1/2 tsp lemon zest (skip)
  • 1-1/2 tbsp fresh lemon juice (didn't use fresh)
  • 1/4 tsp salt (skip)
  • Place barley and 4c water in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook until water is nearly absorbed (25-30 minutes).
  • Stir in frozen edamame and peas; cook, uncovered, until barley absorbs all of remaining water (5-10 mins). Turn off heat.
  • Stir in spinach; set aside.
  • Combine Worcestershire sauce, lemon zest, lemon juice and salt in a small bow, whisking well. Pour over barley, stir to combine.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature.
Serving size: 1 cup
Per serving: Calories: 259; fat: 2g (sat: 0mg, mono: 0mg, poly: 0mg); cholesterol: 0mg; protein: 11g; carbs: 50g; sugars: 3g; fiber: 12g; iron: 3mg; sodium: 232mg; calcium: 57mg

The kid ate absolutely nothing. But, I base this more on the fact that he had a super-long day at Ohio Stadium, is therefore particularly pissy and tired right now, and less that he just didn't like the food. I was kind of worried about this side dish - I let it simmer for a little longer than in the directions, but it still seemed a little watery. But, once it hit the plate, it was actually quite good. I cut my serving in half because an entire cup seemed like a lot. Even the hubs, who doesn't like peas or spinach or really anything particularly healthy, enjoyed. The ribs were OK. The name of the recipe is def deceiving - they were certainly not the best Asian-style ribs I've ever had. I did taste that weird cherry ingredient, but they weren't overly sweet.

I actually had more than 2 ribs, but this photographed better

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