From Dish Erin:
It’s the holidays. Season of lengthy to-do lists, gluttony and stress. Oh, also joy. That, too. For some much needed downtime amidst the chaos, I locked myself in my apartment, put up a Christmas tree and focused on food. Oh and 2 buck Chuck. He’s never too far from me.
1 whole boneless pork loin roast
Salt & pepper
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon grainy mustard
dash of sherry or apple cider vinegar
handful of fresh rosemary, finely minced
handful of fresh thyme, finely minced
2 cloves garlic finely minced
dash of olive oil
Brussels sprouts, halved
Fingerling potatoes, halved (make sure all the pieces are roughly the same size)
A few thinly sliced onions
More olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Season the pork loin with salt and pepper. In a dutch oven or saute pan, heat some olive oil on high. When the pan is really hot, sear the pork on all sides until golden brown (about 4 minutes per side) to lock in the juices. Remove from heat.
Combine the next 8 ingredients in a small dish until it forms a nice paste. Coat the top and sides of the pork with the mustard paste and bake for about 50 minutes.
When the pork is about halfway cooked, saute some fingerling potatoes in a pan with olive oil (or bake them–I just didn’t have room in my oven!), some sliced onions and garlic, salt, pepper, and some of those leftover fresh herbs until tender. Ditto for brussels sprouts: coat with olive oil, salt, pepper, and saute in a pan with a lid for about 15-20 minutes. Throw a splash of Chuck Shaw wine in there. Why not?
When the pork is done, remove from the oven and let it stand for about 10 minutes. Then slice and serve with the sides.
Ho ho ho, ladies.
**Oven times and heat levels really vary, so check it at 45-50 minutes. The pork should register 160 degrees on a meat thermometer when done.
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From Dish Nicole:
Now that the cold weather has settled in for good this holiday season, I have been digging out all of my soup and stew recipes. There really is nothing better than coming home to a steaming bowl of soup after a long chilly day of running around the city. I could eat soup for just about every meal and it’s one of my favorites to cook up because it’s so easy to improvise with the ingredients. For this particular recipe I wanted a potato leek soup but without the “cream of”. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good “cream of” but after Thanksgiving I decided to try and lay off the sweets and the old “cream ofs” for a bit. This recipe I adapted to suit my needs and it doesn’t need a lot of ingredients to make it tasty, thanks to the leeks.
For the soup you will need:
-3 TBS olive oil
-2 large leeks
-2 large carrots diced
-3 stalks of celery diced
-1 medium white onion
-1 cup fresh dill
-a dozen small red potatoes washed and sliced with the skins
-48oz of Chicken or vegetable stock
-sea salt and pepper for taste
-shaved parmesan cheese to garnish
To start, dice up the leeks using all of the white and light green parts and soak in a bowl of cold water to clean. While the leeks are soaking, dice up the onion and set aside. Heat olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat and add the onions and leeks stirring with a wooden spoon until softened. Next, add the carrots and celery to the pot and cover until the vegetables soften. Add the stock to the pot and season with salt and pepper.
Once the stock starts to simmer throw in the potatoes and let simmer for about 20 minutes. Stir occasionally, add more salt and pepper if necessary. After the potatoes are cooked add the dill. Portion out your delish soup, garnish with parmesan and dig in. The best part of making big pot meals is that you have plenty of soup for you and a few friends, maybe even leftovers.
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From Dish Jodi:
An almost Christmas greeting to all our readers! I’m about to head to
Paris for the holidays and escape into a magical culinary dreamland
for a little while. The only plans so far are to, every day, whip out
our list of stores, restaurants, bars and cafes that all friends have
recommended and explore a city neither I nor my hubby have been to
before. (If you have any “must see” or “must eat” things, please
leave tips in the comments section!) Needless to say, some gorgeous
chocolates will certainly be devoured. Just like you wouldn’t try to
run a marathon without lots of training, I needed get my tastebuds in
shape for the Iron Man of Deliciousness we have ahead of us. Made
these super easy, super creamy truffles for a friend’s christmas party
this weekend…definitely a good warm up.
1 Cup Heavy Cream
1 Lb Good Chocolate – i use a mix of semi-sweet and bitter-sweet.
1 Tbsp Brewed Coffee or Espresso – I just use a bit of instant
espresso powder dissolved in warm water
1/2 tsp of Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp flavored liqueur, rum, etc. (optional)
Handful of finely chopped nuts (optional)
Cocoa Powder or Powdered Sugar (optional)
Finely chop the chocolate and put in a heat-proof bowl. In a small
saucepan, bring the heavy cream JUST to a boil, then pouring through a
sieve in case of any weird curdled parts, pour over the chocolate and
stir til it’s all melted and shiny. Add the coffee and Vanilla and any
liqueur if using. When it’s all combined, let cool completely til room
temperature and moldable. I will sometimes put in the fridge if my
kitchen is too warm.
Once cool, using spoons or your fingers (or, even better a tiny ice
cream scoop!) make tablespoon- (or so) sized balls, and roll them in the
chopped nuts to coat -
Or if no nuts, roll in cocoa powder or sugar.
Place on parchment til they harden up a bit and serve at room temp!
I like to play with lots of different combos…kahlua mixed in with
hazelnuts on the outside, Grand marnier and cocoa powder, cherry
liqueur and almonds outside. Have fun…it’s hard to screw up these
little smooth fudgy bites of awesomeness.
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