Sunday, September 25, 2011

You Know You're An Adult When...

... purchasing new cookware and appliances is super-exciting!

After doing some deep soul searching (and receiving my new Cooking Light chock full of recipes) I decided I was in dire need of a real, honest-to-goodness Dutch oven. So off I went to Crate & Barrel, where I picked up a fabulous new red Mario Batali 6-quart dutch oven.

Another stellar pic: Dutch oven in action
And, feeling flush with excitement, I also picked up a new blender, which I have every intention of using very soon. I have dreams of pesto and soup and smoothies running through my head, peeps. (I vow to you: This will not be repeated:

And while cookware and appliances may not be as thrilling as a hot new pair of shoes or fabu bag (coming my way as soon as I hit the mall), this blog is about my cooking, not about my super-materialistic tendencies, so we'll go with it.

Soy and Cola-Braised Pork Shoulder
Source: Cooking Light, October 2011

  • 1 tbsp dark sesame oil
  • 1 (3.5 lbs) bone-in pork shoulder, trimmed
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt (skip)
  • 1 tbsp minced peeled fresh ginger (used refrigerated)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups cola (such as Coca-Cola)
  • 1/2 c. hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 c. rice vinegar (I use sodium-free)
  • 1/4 c. low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 c. sliced green onions (skipped -didn't feel like it)
  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees
  • Heat a Dutch oven (wheee!) over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan. Sprinkle pork evenly with salt. Add pork to pan; saute for 8 minutes, turning to brown all sides. Remove pork. Add ginger and garlic, saute; saute for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in cola and the next 3 ingredients (through soy sauce); bring to a boil.
  • Return pork to pan; bake for 1 hour and 50 minutes or until tender, turning occasionally. Remove pork from pan and let stand for 10 minutes. Shred pork with 2 forks. Skim fat from cooking liquid.
  • Place pan over medium-high heat; bring cooking liquid to a boil. Cook 15 minutes or until reduced to about 2 cups, stirring occasionally. Combine pork and 3/4 c. sauce in a bowl, toss to coat. Top with onions. Serve pork with remaining 1-1/4 c. sauce.
  •  Note: You can serve this on a bun, roll, in tortillas or just on its own.
Yield: 10 servings (3 oz. pork, 2 tbsp sauce)
Per serving: 316 calories; 18.3g fat (6.4 sat, 8.2 mono, 2.8g poly); protein: 24.3g; carb: 12.8g; fiber: 0.7g; chol: 91mg; sodium: 574mg; calc: 39mg

We also had:
Corn Bake
Source: Heart Healthy Living (not sure of date; FYI: This magazine is no longer published)

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large red sweet pepper, chopped
  • 1-15.25oz can no-salt added whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1-14.75oz can no-salt added cream-style corn
  • 1-8.5oz package corn muffin mix
  • 1/3 c. refrigerated egg substitute
  • 1-8oz carton light sour cream
  • 1/2 c. reduced fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese (2oz)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a large skillet with nonstick cooking spray, heat over medium heat. Cook onion and red pepper in hot skillet for about 8 minutes or until tender. Cool slightly. Lightly coat a 2-quart baking rectangular baking dish with cooking spray, set aside.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine whole corn, cream-style corn, corn muffin mix and egg substitute. Stir in cooled veggies. Transfer mixture to prepared dish.
  • In a small bowl, combine sour cream and cheese. Spoon in small mounds over corn mixture. Bake for about 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Yield: 16 servings (1/3 c. per serving)
Per serving: 134 calories; 4 g total fat (2g sat); 7mg chol; 155mg sodium; 22g carb; 1g fiber; 4g protein

The kid gagged his way through tiny two bites of the corn bake - which was super endearing, btw - but honestly, I thought it was delish (and might have had a teeny bit more than one serving), as did the hubs. We all liked the pork shoulder, although shredding it was kind of a hassle. The boys ate theirs on buns with some cheese, I went plain (so I could have more corn bake). And no, the thrill of my new Dutch oven hasn't totally worn off yet.

Three Forks

Does the corn bake really look gag-worthy?

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