Carne Asada

One of the places Jeremiah and I eat out at a lot is Chipotle. On more than one occasion, we have tried to make our own at home. I also was telling Jeremiah about these amazing black beans and rice I had eaten at the Culinary Center of Kansas City. I was convinced they used chicken broth and I could try to replicate the flavor at home.

This was our attempt last week and trying to replicate both these tasty dishes. Although we thought the Carne Asada had really good flavor, making it along with rice, beans, guacamole, and Pico from scratch made quite a mess to clean-up. Sometimes, it’s just easier to go out and stand in line.

FullSizeRender (6)Carne Asade by Show Me the Yummy
2 lb. flank steak
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 T. olive oil
¼ c. orange juice
¼ c. lime juice
¼ c. lemon juice
¼ c. soy sauce
2 T. white vinegar

In a small bowl, mix spices. Then, stir in oil. Rub half of mixture on each side of the steak. Mix together remaining ingredients. Spray Crockpot with nonstick spray. Pour in half of juice mixture. Place in steak and pour over with remaining juice. Cook on low for six hours.

Black Beans by Amber Bourek
8 oz. dry black beans
1 c. low sodium chicken stock
water
½ diced yellow onion
2 crushed garlic cloves
salt
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder

Rise black beans. For beans in sprayed Crockpot. Cover with 1 cup of chicken stock and enough water to cover by two inches. Add in onion, garlic, and seasonings. Cook on high for six – seven hours.

Note:

I put together a few recipes to make this dish. I cooked them for 4 hours. They were still a little hard so I kept cooking them. My husband thinks we should have soaked the beans for 24 hours and then they would have cooked in 3 ½ to 4 hours.

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No Fuss Chicken Dinner

Who doesn’t love a simple four ingredient recipe? This Crockpot recipe only takes about 5 minutes of your time to make.

Lemon ChickenCrockpot Lemon Chicken from Pinterest
3-4 T. butter
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 package of Italian seasoning
lemon juice

Cube butter and place on the bottom of a Crockpot. Top with chicken breast. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning. Drizzle with lemon juice. Bake on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.

Herb-Roasted Pork Chops

One of the best cooks I ever dated was D. His parents owned a restaurant and he taught me a lot about seasoning. Pork chops were his favorite food. He used to put flour, seasoning salt, garlic, and black pepper in a plastic store bag and coat the pork chops. The other day, I decided to do something a little different with my pork chops and ran across this diabetic friendly recipe. I hope you enjoy this refreshing pork recipe. It reminded me a little of my Bacon-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin recipe – minus the bacon. I think it would taste great with a scampi pasta side dish.

Lemon Herb Pork ChopHerb-Roasted Pork Chop by Mr. Food
3 T.  lemon juice
3 scallions, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed
1/4 tsp. black pepper
4 pork chops

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking dish with non-stick spray. Mix tops in another bowl, placing meat inside, and coating both sides. Place in baking dish and cook for 20 minutes. Serves four.

Nutritional Facts Per Serving: 177 calories (64 calories from fat), 7 g. fat (3 g. saturated fat), 71 mg. cholesterol, 58 mg. sodium, 2 g. carbs, 0 g. fiber, 1 g. sugar, and 25 g. protein.

Notes:

  • I used a boneless pork loin chop.
  • I used chopped garlic in a jar.

Artichoke Crab Spread

When my sister and I went to Denver a few years ago, it was snowing pretty hard when we came back from the Independent Film Festival. We decided to grab dinner downstairs in the hotel instead of trekking back out. We had this great warm artichoke and crab dip. I was so excited when I saw a recipe for something similar in a Pillsbury email a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as good as the one they made at the Denver City Center Marriott m.i. greatroom. That said, I think this recipe is great for an holiday get together you are hosting.

Artichoke Crab SpreadArtichoke-Crab Spread
1 can (14 oz.) artichoke heart quarters (drained and chopped)
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese
4 medium green onions, diced
1 c. shredded imitation crabmeat (4 oz.)
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
4 tsp. lemon juice
French baguette bread

Spray a mini-cockpot with non-stick spray. Put in all ingredients except bread. Cook for an hour on low, stirring occasionally. Serve warm on bread.

Pineapple Plantation

My junior year of high school, I was lucky enough to take my first plane ride to Hawaii. My family didn’t ever really go on vacation so this was HUGE! My Grandma and Grandpa Fletcher had taken many trips over the years for free based on points earned from selling fertilizer. (But just to be clear, they always paid taxes on these trips.) That trip to Hawaii was probably my grandparents’ fifth or sixth voyage to Hawaii. It was February and my mother didn’t trust her 16 year old to stay home alone and my sister was going on her college choir tour.

The trip was an amazing opportunity. We stayed on the BigIsland – Hawaii. Grandpa got us a rental car so we were able to explore the island. It was my first time seeing the ocean which was this amazing shade of crystal clear blue. Grandpa and I flew in a helicopter over the an active volcano and you could feel the heat. I got to walk across the black sands beach which is made from the volcano ash coming from up from the ocean. We also participated in a luau just outside our hotel. Then, my mother and I flew over to Oahu for a day trip. We saw places like Pearl Harbor and a famous beach on Waikiki where they filmed a lot of movies.

One of the most interesting places we visited during that day trip was the Dole Pineapple Plantation. I had no idea how long and difficult the process is to grow pineapples. I believe they told us it takes two years. And if you have ever cut a real pineapple, you know what a prickly mess they can be. But I developed a new found appreciation for the fruit and have no issues paying the price for a fresh pineapple. That said, I did learn on the History Channel that the small or weird looking ones are supposed to be sold but canned for their imperfection. Just remember that the next time you buy an unusual one on sale at the grocery store for $1.99.

Today’s recipe also comes from Price Chopper’s produce recipe rack. You might not think this is much of a recipe but I thought it was something a little different than just eating the pineapple cold and raw. The lemon juice adds just a bit of a tang.

Pineapple Skewers with Lemon Yogurt
1 fresh pineapple, cored and sliced
3 T. of fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. lemon zest
1 (6 oz.) container of low fat vanilla yogurt
toasted coconut or granola (optional)
Skewers (Metal or wooden soak water for 30 minutes)

Cut pineapple and thread on skewers. Grill over a medium heat basting with 2 T. of lemon juice, turning occasionally. In the meantime, combine yogurt, remaining lemon juice, and zest. Top with coconut if desired. Serve while pineapple is still warm.

Nutrition Facts: 65 calories, 1 g. fat, 0 saturated fat, 0 cholesterol, 20 mg sodium, 160 mg potassium, 14 carbs, 1 g. fiber, 2 g. protein

Notes:

  • I did not have an skewers so I made the pineapple just laying it on my stove top grill. It worked just fine.
  • I made it without coconut. I substituted Honey Nut Cheerios for the crunch.
  • If you like fresh pineapple, purchase a pineapple de-corer. All you have to do is cut off the top and start twisting it down the pineapple. I keeps the juice inside the pineapple.
  • Looking to mix it up, maybe try grilling some strawberries with your pineapple.
  • Consider purchasing Yoplait yogurt right now. For every pink lid redeemed online and mailed it, your local Komen Affiliate will receive $.20 per yogurt lid redeemed. It’s an easy way to help provide dollars to fund breast cancer education, screening, and treatment in your community.