I don’t say this often but occasionally I reach my limit of overly healthy recipes. There I said it. But right when I’m about to cook something “bad” my inner voice comes out and reminds me of the Punta Cana vacation we are about to go on. There is a part of me that loves to eat healthy and then there is this other side that wants to eat bad because it’s the playoffs or enjoy the entire Chocolate Ganache Explosion at the steakhouse on Saturday night or have 10 well done wings at Buffalo Wild Wings just because it’s Sunday. Thankfully I am pretty strong willed and have learned how to reach a compromise with myself. The recipe I am about to share with you is a compromise between my love for bacon, bean soup and the want to make the two a less guilty combination.
Beans are a nutritional powerhouse. They are loaded with insoluble fiber, B vitamin, calcium and folate. They are cheap and versatile. In fact with so many fantastic recipes out there, varieties of beans quickly became a staple in my house. With all that said, I decided to make bean soup using some bacon but still keep the good in it.
I am very happy with the way this bean soup turned out. I am also very happy that I still have another day off tomorrow. I have lots of to do’s on my list as we are starting a mini bathroom remodel and will spend most of the day painting. I’ll be sure to post the before and after pictures soon.
- 1 lb dry navy white beans
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 5 uncured bacon slab pieces, cut into ¼ inch (i used Trader Joe’s brand)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 celery stalks, cubed
- 1 fresh thyme sprig, roughly chopped
- olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 5 cups water
- Bring 2 cups of water and beans to a boil, cook 3 minutes. Turn of the heat, set aside for 1 hour.
- Heat olive oil in a Dutch Oven and saute bacon until crispy.
- Once bacon is crispy, remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Discard ¾ of the fat, add onion, celery and garlic ,saute until translucent.
- Return bacon to the pot.
- Drain the beans and add to the onion bacon mixture.
- Top with water, add thyme and simmer on medium low until the beans are well cooked about 1 to 1½ hours.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste
- Add water if necessary to keep soupy consistency.
Woo hoo, Christmas is almost here. I am so excited. Can’t wait for Tuesday. I love spending the time with my loves on this special day, lounging around in pajamas all morning, watching the excitement on Briana’s face as she opens her presents and replaying The Christmas Story all day. Can’t wait to cook Christmas dinner, have the rest of the family come over and enjoy a few cocktails in between.
We have been eating very healthy lately. So to satisfy my meat and potatoes kinda husband I decided to cook something not so healthy this weekend. Let me tell you I am so glad I did. These ribs came out of this world delicious and we certainly enjoyed being a little naughty.
I browned the ribs under the broiler first.
Next I topped them with a braising liquid made with onions, celery, carrots, garlic, beer and soy sauce. And then let it do its thing in the oven for about 1 1/2 hours.
I served them with equally delicious Bacon Hasselback potatoes.
Merry Christmas to all of you and your families. One of the best things about this time of the year is creating wonderful memories with the ones we love.
- 6 country style short ribs
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 small carrot diced
- 1 small celery rib, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed
- ¼ tbsp red pepper flakes
- ¾ bottle light beer such as Coors Light or Bud Light
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- ½ cup low sodium chicken stock
- salt and pepper to taste
- In an oven safe dish arrange short ribs so they are not touching each other and cook about 8 minutes on each side under the broiler until golden brown.
- Meanwhile, sauté all the vegetables in a little olive oil until soft.
- Add beer, stock, red pepper flakes and soy sauce and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Transfer ribs to a deep baking dish, top with the vegetable mixture. Adjust seasonings if needed. And braise at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
- Turn the ribs and continue braising for 1 hour more.
My heart bleeds for the parents of the beautiful little children and families of all the teachers lost in a terrible tragedy in CT. This truly is one of the worst acts committed by human kind. No parent should ever experience such pain and no child should be taken at such a young age.
This weekend I focused on my family. As I stopped and looked at my baby girl and my husband I’d think to myself of how lucky I am to have the two of them in my life. This weekend we did what we do best, hang out, watch football, cook, relax, dance, listen to music and enjoy being a family. I have been trying to get into the spirit of Christmas ever since we came back from Mexico. This weekend has inspired me to enjoy this time once again. I have to add I absolutely love the holidays. I am a total Christmas junkie. Its good to be my normal self again.
I want to share a delicious recipe I made on Sunday for dinner – Acorn Squash stuffed with quinoa, pork and spinach. Light and flavorful.
I used leftover pork for this dish, however you can use sausage as well. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut an acorn squash in half and place into a baking dish. Season with salt, pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for 35 minutes.
Meanwhile sauté spinach in olive oil.
Add cooked quinoa, left over cooked pork (or sausage) and cook for 2 minutes.
Add a good amount of stuffing to each squash half. drizzle with a more olive oil and bake another 20 minutes.
Stuffed Acorn Squash
- 1 acorn squash, cleaned, cut in half, seeds removed
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1/2 cup leftover pork or cooked sausage
- 1 cup spinach
- salt & pepper to taste
- olive oil
- 1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- 2. Drizzle squash with a little olive oil, season with salt and pepper and roast cut side up about 30 minutes.
- 3. Meanwhile, sauté spinach until lightly wilted. Add cooked quinoa and pork. Heat through and generously fill each squash half.
- 4. Drizzle with a little more olive oil and bake about 15-20 minutes.
What’s a better way to get back into a swing of things after a tropical vacation then a comforting dish of something heart warming. That’s exactly what I did tonight. Returning to a 10 hour work day after 10 days of vacation is not a simple thing. Naturally for dinner I wanted to have something satisfying and that satisfaction came from a bowl of a spectacular chili. Here are my favorite healthier and lighter comfort meals.
There are simply no words for how much Hubby and I enjoy this fantastic Guinness Beer Chili. I have made numerous pots of chili in the past and this one is by far the best one. After years of perfecting the recipe, I finally made the perfect bowl of chili. Needless to say this will be the only one my husband will ever allow me to cook.
I love love love this Pozole. Over the years I have cooked and tried so many variations of this incredibly flavorful stew. There are so many ways to make one: authentic versions, restaurant versions, pork, chicken or even seafood which I tasted in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. All fantastic and unbelievably satisfying, this recipe is my compilation of tastes and experiences.
This Red Wine Braised Chicken is a very special recipe that brings childhood memories and what can be better than great childhood memories. My mom used to cook a dish like this when I was just a kid and this is my updated, more grown up version of this yumminess.
When I think of comfort I think of a pot pie. Don’t you? A chicken pot is a quintessential comfort dish. Add biscuits and you’re in foodie heaven. In this Chicken Pot Pie with Herb Biscuits I combined the two but lightened it up a little. The end result – MMM MM M!
Ok, I’ll give it to you. When you think of comfort, fish is usually not part of it. However, you have to trust me and try my Cod Baked with Chorizo and Cannellini Beans. First and foremost, I never imagined how good cod is with white wine and beans. Second, it is good for you. And last, it takes no effort and has become Kurt’s favorite dinner.
You know those nights when you need something cozy, yummy, simple, quick? Your answer lies in this Millet with Mushroom Gravy. Don’t like millet, then sauce it onto rice, top it over mashed potatoes or have it with noodles.
I’ll give you one moment to think about this – Sausage Hash with Baked Eggs. Breakfast, brunch, dinner? Sure no problem. Quick & easy? Sure no problem. Delicious? ABSOLUTELY.
Until I met my husband I have never even heard of this incredible stew. I am so saddened that I spend the first quarter of my life without ever tasting it. I remember the first time Kurt described it to me. I was new to Mexican cuisine and had no idea what he was talking about. We drove out to a local Mexican restaurant in hopes of tasting this incredible dish, but to my disappointment they did not have any. Determined I found the recipe on my IPhone, stopped at the grocery store and a few hours later I had a bowl of my first ever Pozole. It was so good, i was in love and it became a new staple in our house. Over the last few years as I really focused on learning to cook Mexican dishes it became more apparent to me that my Pozole was far from the real deal. And that’s when I discovered Roberto Santibanez’s Pozole. I changed some of the ingredients to make it a little easier to make. The best way you can understand what I’m talking about is to simply make this dish. Trust me!
Don’t be discouraged by the ingredients, they are actually quite simple to find. The prep work is worth it as well. Either pork or chicken works great as well. I would love to tell you to make a batch and freeze it, but I don’t know if thats possible. At least not in this house, never makes it – we eat it all.
Start with roasting tomatoes about 15-20 minutes in the oven.
While tomatoes roast, cut the stem off and discard the seeds from the dried guajillo chiles. You can find them in latin supermarkets or specialty stores. Then heat up a skillet and let the chiles toast a few minutes on each side.
Once toasted transfer to a bowl, top with hot water and cover with a plate. The hot water and the steam will rehydrate and soften the chile and the smell in the kitchen will be divine. Don’t worry guajillo chiles are not spicy and barely have any heat but they do have a nice smoky flavor with berry undertones.
Combine roasted tomatoes, guajillo chiles, onion and garlic in a blender. If you have time the onion slices and garlic can be charred for extra flavor. Add 1/4 cup chicken stock, vinegar and salt and blend together until very smooth. (It can even be strained at this point)
Heat up a Dutch oven or a heavy pot and cook the mixture for about 15 minutes on medium low heat until its slightly thicker. This is also the time to add cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. As you are simmering the sauce if need be add more chicken stock to keep it the same consistency. When the sauce is ready add pork chunks, remaining chicken broth, hominy, beans, oregano and cilantro. Simmer until pork if fully cooked, adjust salt if necessary and serve with avocado, lettuce, onion and lime.
I am not going to suggest any wines with this one. This is a deeply flavorful dish and requires a shot of tequila. Kurt and I collect tequila, especially in pretty bottles like these that we brought back from Mexico.
Check out Shine Supper Club to find other recipes of One-Pot Meals.
- 3 medium tomatoes
- 4 dried, guajillo chiles, stem cut and seeds discarded
- 1 large onion, sliced thick
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 1/2 lb pork or chicken
- 2 tbsp white vinegar
- 1 tbsp chili, preferably a chili mix
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp oregano
- 2 cloves
- 1 14oz can hominy, rinsed
- 1 14oz can kidney beans, rinsed
- fresh cilantro to taste
- salt and pepper to taste
- Avocado, lettuce, lime and onion - toppings
- 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut an x at the top of each tomato and roast about 15 min.
- 2. Toast guajillo chiles in a skillet about 3 min on each side and move to a bowl. Top with hot water, cover with a plate and let sit about 25 min.
- 3. In a blender, combine roasted tomatoes, drained chiles, vinegar, onion and garlic. Simmer the sauce about 15 minutes adding more chicken stock if necessary to keep the same consistency.
- 4. Season with cinnamon, nutmeg, chili powder, cloves and salt.
- 5. Add pork, hominy, beans and remaining chicken stock. Simmer until pork is fully cooked.
- 6. Serve with toppings: avocado, onion, lime and lettuce