Tag Archives: rice

Glazed-Bacon Wrapped Hawaiian Pork

A few months back our family went to a local restaurant here in Texas and my husband had this fun appetizer with ‘sweet-heat’ ingredients.  After I helped myself to a sample bite of his meal, I knew I had to recreate and tweak it into dinner form…and I have to say, it’s not too shabby!

You have sweet and savory flavors from the honey glaze, bacon and pork tenderloin and a wonderful FRESHNESS from the pineapple..lets also not forget the heat of the jalapeno and pepper jack cheese.  Now you can absolutely use a plain jack cheese and seed the jalapeno, but when you roast hot peppers the heat actually subsides a bit..so pick your heat level, but I could even do hotter! (Duh)

These flavors together remind me of the Hawaiin rice, veggie and meat bowls I used to get when living along the coast of San Diego.  So naturally I paired the main dish with a heaping of rice and drizzled the juices overtop.  It’s quite the pairing!

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 pckg bacon
  • 1 pork tenderloin 
  • Pineapple, fresh preferred
  • Jalapeño, sliced in half lengthwise (I prefer to keep the seeds in)
  • Monterey Jack or pepper jack cheese

Glaze

  • 4 Tbsp Honey
  • 3 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Chili sauce
  • 2 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt & pepper  

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil and a rack overtop.

In a small bowl whisk the honey, balsamic vinegar, chili sauce, garlic, EVOO and a pinch of salt & pepper together.  Set aside. *Taste the glaze to tweak any ingredient to your taste. 

  Now lay the bacon stips, touching, on top of the wire racked baking sheet. 

 Next, butterfly the pork tenderloin and stuff with the pineapple, jalapeños and cheese.  *To make it fit a bit better, I’ll get pepper jack string cheese or cut a block into strips and stuff into the jalapeño before putting into the pork.  Shredded cheese could be used as well.  Season with another pinch of salt and pepper.

Transfer the stuffed pork onto the layed out bacon strips.  Coat a good amount  (about 1/2) of the prepared glaze allllll over the pork.  Wrap up the entire stuffed tenderloin with the bacon.  *If needed, you can use toothpicks to secure, just remember to remove before eating! 

 After the pork has been fully wrapped in delicious bacon, coat the entire thing with the rest of the glaze. 

 Place into your oven, uncovered for 45-60 minutes (meat temperature at least 145degrees and bacon done.  *About halfway through check on the bacon.  Depending you may need to lightly tent the wrapped tenderloin with foil.  Though we like ours more on the crisp side.  To each their own! 

 Remove the cooked tenderloin from the oven, lightly tent with foil, and let rest for about 5 minutes.  Carve into 1-2″ slices and serve over rice.  Spoon any drippings over the pork and rice.  Enjoy!! 

 


Creole Gulf Shrimp

What do you make when you have an extra bag of frozen shrimp in the freezer and a few pantry staples?  Well let me happily tell you, because this creole seafood dish is a winner!  Another plus of this meal is that it’s ready in mere minutes and you can have a gourmet dinner for your family without even leaving your home!

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 1/2 lb large/extra large shrimp, peeled & deveined 
  • 1/4 cup onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 stick butter, unsalted & softened
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbsp cajun/creole seasoning
  • Dash of Tabasco sauce 
  • Pinch each of ground pepper & kosher salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Garnish

  • Rice
  • Parsley
  • Lemon wedges
  • Crusty Bread (for dipping)  

Start this fun and delicious meal by peeling the shell off of the shrimp *I personally like to leave the tail on, looks ‘pretty’, but up to you. 

 In a large bowl, combine the minced garlic, cajun seasoning and the salt & pepper.  Add the shrimp to the seasoning blend and toss to coat. 

   In a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the extra virgin olive oil to medium-high heat.  Add the seasoned shrimp to the hot oil and cook till pink *about 2 minutes.  Remove the shrimp to a plate and set aside. 

   In that same sauté pan, add in the diced onion along the white wine, worcestershire sauce, lemon juice and tabasco sauce and cook till the onions are translucent. 

   Follow that with the softened butter and stir till combined.  

 

 Finally, add the shrimp back to pan and coat in the sauce. This creamy cajun inspired sauce would be good on a shoe…but luckily I had a baguette ready to go! Tear off a nice hunk and sop up that garlicky, buttery flavor! 

  

Before baking, I brushed a bit of melted butter overtop and sprinkled with some creole seasoning!

 
I like to serve ours spooned over rice with a bit of extra sauce to dip that warm baguette into!  Enjoy this cajun delight! 
 

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry

I must really love my husband, because besides sushi I am not big on Asian cuisine…at all.  I know, I know..I’m “crazy”, “nuts”, “a weirdo”..I’ve heard it all.  Quite frankly, just feed me tacos and champagne for the rest of my days and I’d be happy as a clam!

That being said, every now and then I’ll surprise my dear love with an Asian inspired meal…and it’s also quite possible that I just wanted a sake bomb, but who knows?? 😉

So below is a take on a restaurant favorite that I tried and tweaked and I have to say….I wasn’t sure if I was in my own kitchen or Little China down the street, it was that good.  I suppose that may also of had to do with the sake bombs 😉 

The Starting Lineup

Marinade (1hr)

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp red pepper flake (optional, if you like a bit of heat–not recommended for lil kiddos)
  • 1 1/2 lbs flank steak, sliced into thin strips

Sauce

  • 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce (make sure to NOT use regular soy sauce…it will be waayyy too salty)
  • 2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1-2 tsp fresh ginger, grated or finely minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 2 Tbsp sherry
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1-2 heads broccoli, crowns cut off

Garnish/Sides (optional)

  • Rice (white or fried)
  • Scallions
  • Sriracha sauce  

Let’s begin!  Starting with the marinade, have a medium size bowl ready and whisk together all of the above “marinade” ingredients (baking soda, sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce, water and vegetable oil).  

Next add in the thinly sliced steak and toss with tongs to coat.  Cover the bowl with saran wrap and keep in the refridgerator for 45-60 minutes.  This will really tenderize that ‘tough’ flank steak like you wouldn’t believe!  *Take the steak out of the refridgerator about 15 minutes prior to cooking. 

  

Yes…I know, it looks really appetizing doesn’t it?? Sorry to my vegetarian friends. Kind of.

 

Alrighty..now while the meat is tenderizing away in the fridge, all we have left to do is the sauce and prepping of the broccoli.  I first cut the crowns of the broccoli off their stalks and rinse them in a collander and allow to dry.  *If still a bit wet when time to cook, just pat dry with a paper towel/kitchen towel.  You really don’t want water added to hot oil..at all!  *You can also keep the stalks and use in soup broths, chop into a chicken alfredo sauce, etc.. 

   Next for the sauce (glaze), in a small bowl combine the ‘sauce’ ingredients (soy sauce, dark brown sugar, ginger, garlic, flour, sherry, vegetable oil).  Cover and set aside. 

   

    I’m pretty sure that by now the steak should be about ready to cook!  Sooo in a large pan, heat 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil to medium-high heat.  Add in the broccoli and cook for about 3-4 minutes while stirring often.  *If they turn a bit brown/crisp on the edges, that is ok!.  Remove the par cooked broccoli to a plate and set aside. 

   In that same pan, carefully add in another Tbsp of vegetable oil and then once hot toss in the marinated steak and 1/2 of the prepared sauce.  Sauté togther for about 4 minutes.  Finally add the broccoli back in with the remaining sauce and saute all together for another 1-2 minutes. 

       I like to serve our Beef & Broccoli over rice and garnish with a bit of scallions and sriracha (<- for the adults), alongside a few appetizers of pot stickers and egg rolls!  Let me tell you…my lil boys ate that steak right up!  A perfect sweet & salty flavor! 

 

Southwest Sausage Skillet (one pot meal)

Do you crave a bit of a ‘kick ‘to the flavor of your dinner?  Possible something that could stretch into leftovers all while being easyand FAST to prepare??  Whelp…here you go my friend!  It has a bit of heat from the spices and garnishes, savory from the sausage and broth and that rice fills everyone up!

This quick dinner is awesome since most of the ingredients may already be on hand, no store run needed (excellent)….and if not for dinner, this is also a great side dish for any pot luck party!

Plus, feel free to make this YOUR own!  If you like different veggies, add them!  If you want to add in a can of green chilies, please do!! (That’d be great in this by the way! ;))

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 lb pork sausage
  • 2 cups instant rice 
  • 2 cups chicken broth (or water)
  • 1 can Bush’s Grillin Beans (Black Bean Fiesta)
  • 1 can Rotel diced tomatoes 
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • EVOO
  • Salt & ground pepper

Spices (optional)

  • 1/2 tsp each chili powder, cumin, coriander (to taste)

Garnish (optional)

  • Sour cream
  • Jalapeno slices
  • Salsa
  • Avocado slices
  • Cilantro 

In a large skillet, heat about 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil to medium heat.  Once that’s ready, add in the red onion and bell peppers (with a pich of salt) and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often.  Step one is done!

   Next, add in the pound of sausage (another pinch of salt & pepper) to the same skillet as the sweated vegetables and cook completely.  Raw sausage is rather gross ;).   *Here is where you can kick it up with the optional spices.  If you choose not too (and that’s ok ;), don’t fret because the beans and tomatoes both have lots of flavor!

   After the sausage has cooked through, pour both the canned beans and tomatoes in the SAME skillet still and stir together.

 Finally, pour in the uncooked INSTANT rice and chicken broth (or water).  Stir, bring to a low boil, stir, cover and set to low/simmer.  The rice will only take about 5-10 minutes to soften.  *If you’re feeding a large crowd/family, add in one extra cup of rice and an extra cup of broth/water.

     After the 5-10 minutes is up, layer that shredded cheddar cheese right on top, re-cover and remove from heat.  After just a couple of minutes it will have melted and be ready to serve!!

     Spoon the cheesy, rice & sausage skillet meal onto a plate and garnish with your favorite southwestern toppings!!  Enjoy!

 

Creamy Poblano Rice

I have a deep affection to the poblano pepper.  Yes, I am 100% more of a spice girl, but these richly colored and medium heat peppers are so versatile that everyone can enjoy them.  (My three year old ate two full helpings of this dish it’s flavorful, not hot).

Everyone I know grew up eating the traditional orange-y ‘Spanish rice’ with their tacos…why didn’t we ever change up the flavor??  Ok, I know in my childhood home it was because rice-a-roni didn’t make it, but still!

That being said, this recipe takes about 30 minutes to make and boxed rice takes about the same…so give it a try!

*and if your really not into making homemade rice, at least make the creamy poblano purée and add it to some cooked, instant rice.  Done! ☺️👌

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 3 poblanos, seeded and roughly chopped 
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime, the other half for garnish
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1tsp kosher salt
  • Canola oil  

Like usual, we start by prepping our produce.  This always makes everything go smoothly and quickly!  Rinse and cut each as instructed. 

     In a skillet, add together your chicken stock and the poblano peppers.  Bring to a low boil and semi cover.  Allow the peppers to soften for about 10-12 minutes. 

 

We’ll now add in just 1/2 of the heavy cream, cilantro, lime juice and salt.   From here you can either use an immersion blender (straight into the pan) OR pour this mix into a blender or food processor.  Blend till smooth, a little chunky is ok 🙂  Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

  

 

Next…in the same skillet, quickly wipe clean with a paper towel.  Add in a Tbsp of canola oil on medium heat.  

Now goes in the rice and chopped onion.  Stir around until the rice takes on a white appearance. (About 5 minutes).  Add in the minced garlic and cook for 1 more minute. 

 

The last step has arrived (pretty easy so far right?),  pour your creamy poblano mix into the rice and coat.  *here is where I’ll add the other 1/2 cup heavy cream and if needed another 1/2 cup chicken stock.  

Turn heat down to medium-low, cover and allow to simmer for about 15-20 minutes till tender, but still with a chew.  Mushy rice is yuck.  You can stir it once or twice, but try to keep that steam heat in with the lid on. 

 

All done!!  Serve along side a mexican inspired dish, chicken, pork or fish with a lime wedge garnish!  Enjoy! 

 

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