Golden Crispy Pork Chops {+A Crazy 2 Months}

Holy cow, how is February almost over?! I feel like life has been a whirlwind over the past two months.  This is the first weekend since Christmas that we have NO plans and it feels amazing.  Between guests in town, work commitments, and traveling for various events – husband and I are feeling a little worn out.

We spent the morning brunching at a local spot, Sleepy Bee Cafe (highly recommended!) and then took the pups on a long walk.  I cannot believe this weather, it is 65 degrees in February! I know that this is just a tease, but I’ll take it! I think everyone is feeling a little sleepy with full bellies and tired legs.

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I’m sharing this not-so-healthy but delicious recipe with you today. I usually bake Pork Chops in the oven, but I decided to switch it up for a little much needed comfort meal. These crispy pork chops turned out great and didn’t take long to make.

Enjoy!

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Ingredients: 

  • 4 boneless Pork Chops  (1/4 – 1/2 inch thickness)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup Italian flavored breadcrumb OR panko
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 3 tablespoons butter

Instructions: 

1.Whisk eggs, salt and pepper in a deep dish plate.  Mix together bread crumb and flour in a separate deep dish plate.

2.Start by dipping the chops completely in the egg mixture.

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3.Coat pork chops in breadcrumb-flour mixture and pat to adhere breadcrumb to pork chops.

4. Heat 3 tablespoons of butter in large skillet over medium heat.  Place pork chops in skillet and cook for approximately 6 -7 minutes per side, until golden brown.  Once fully cooked, transfer to a plate.  Serve with desired sides.

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Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

I  needed to bake and I wanted to make something simple.  What’s more simple than chocolate chip cookies?  This is a great recipe and the cookies turned out delicious 🙂

This recipe is from allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup light margarine, melted (original recipe called for unsalted butter)
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Instructions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy.
  4. Mix in the sifted ingredients until just blended.
  5. Stir in the chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon. (or rubber spatula…)
  6. Drop tablespoon fulls of cookie dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about 3 inches apart.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Chocolate PB Oatmeal

I recently discovered a new blog, Katshealthcorner and found an oatmeal recipe on there that I just had to try! I’m pretty much obsessed with any chocolate-peanut butter combination and this chocolate PB oatmeal, was no exception. It’s a simple recipe and something I will be making again!

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 2/3 cup water
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon splenda
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 tablespoon cocoa pepper
  • Spoonful of peanut butter
  • Extra chocolate chips for topping
Instructions:
1.  Put oats in to bowl.  Add water, salt, splenda (if you like your oatmeal on the sweeter side), and vanilla.
2. Cook your oats on either the stove top or in the microwave.  (I was in a hurry so I put mine in the microwave for a bout 1 min, 10 seconds).
3. After they are done, separate evenly in to separate bowls.  In one bowl add cinnamon and in other bowl add cocoa.
4.  Now, in the bowl you will be eating out of, combine cinnamon and cocoa oatmeal.  Keeping them on separate sides of the bowl.  (On the original recipe, she made a pretty swirl with the two).
5. Melt a spoonful of peanut butter (about 20 seconds in microwave) and spread over the cinnamon side of the oatmeal.
7.  Top with as many chocolate chips (I used dark chocolate chunks) as you’d like and enjoy!!

Bow Tie Pasta with Italian Sausage

So I have a confession to make.  You see, Mina hates sausage in his pasta. I was tired of doing pasta with a simple meat sauce…so I decided to try to be sneaky by taking the sausage out of it’s casing and I treated it like ground beef to make a pasta sauce.  So when I came to serve dinner, I didn’t mention that there could possibly be sausage in the pasta… just to see if perhaps he would give it another chance. Sneaky sneaky, I know. And  well, I failed. I suppose it was a worth a try though!  He noticed the sausage and wasn’t a fan. On a more positive note, I liked it and so did a friend who was having dinner with us!   So, if you’re a fan of sausage then I think this recipe is worth trying!

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound spicy or sweet Italian sausage (I used spicy)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomatoes, diced
  • 3/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried leaf oregano, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon dried leaf basil, crumbled
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 ounces bow-tie shaped pasta, or farfalle
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions:
1. Remove Italian sausage from casing.
2. Heat olive oil and brown garlic, onion, and sausage.  Drain excess fat.
3. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, oregano, basil, salt and pepper.
4.  Cover and put on low, allowing it to simmer for about 20 minutes.
5.  Cook pasta and drain water. Mix sauce and cooked pasta together.  Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
I ran out of lettuce for a traditional salad, so on the side I made a cucumber, tomato (I had red and yellow tomatoes), feta cheese, and dried cranberry salad.  I seasoned it with some olive oil, salt, pepper, and some parsley.  It was delicious!

Fresh Peach Muffins

I think breakfast might be my favorite meal of the day.  But I typically don’t get the chance to really enjoy breakfast as classes start most mornings by 7:30.  So, I try to make muffins or other quick, on the go breakfast type items at the beginning of the week.  Today I made peach muffins since I had a couple of really ripe peaches. I found a recipe on allrecipes.com but I as usual I couldn’t help but tweak it a bit.  Before peaches are completely out of season, I definitely think these are a must-try!

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup light margarine
  • 3/4 cup sugar (or Splenda)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup yogurt (I had peach greek yogurt, so I used that)*
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda*
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped fresh peaches (Be sure to remove peel from peaches)
*You can substitute the yogurt for sour cream, in which case you wouldn’t need to add the baking soda
Instructions: 
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In a mixing bowl, cream butter, white sugar, and brown sugar. Add egg, yogurt, vanilla, and honey, mix well.
3. Combine flour,  baking powder, and baking soda; stir into creamed mixture just until moistened.
4. Fold in peaches. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full.
5. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20-25 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes; remove from pan to a wire rack.

 

“Pigs in a Blanket”

Mina was invited over to a buddy’s house for a fantasy football draft party.  This is a conversation we had several hours before the party:

Mina: They’re having wings tonight and they asked me to bring a side dish.

Me: Ok, what do you want to take?

Mina: I don’t know…what do you think about some ranch dressing?

Me: (dying laughing) Um. Well, I don’t think that constitutes as a side dish…

So, I took charge of the side dish situation and made a newer version of pigs in a blanket. They were a huge hit and now that football season is in full swing, I know that we’ll be having many football watching parties and these will definitely be made again!

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of reduced fat crescent rolls
  • 1 package chicken italian sausage
  • Slices of your favorite cheese, I used muenster cheese because that’s what I had
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Garlic salt
Instructions:
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.  Boil sausage in water for 5 minutes. Slice sausages in four equal pieces (I cut them in half horizontally and then again in 1/2 vertically)
3. Unroll dough in to triangles.   Place 1/2 a slice of cheese per triangle along with a slice of the sausage.  Wrap triangular dough around dog and cheese.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
4.  Sprinkle each with a pinch of  parmesan cheese and garlic salt.
5.  Bake on 350 for about 13 minutes, or until golden brown.
6.  Dig in and enjoy!

Stir Fry Overload

Yesterday for dinner my friend Mary and I made some chicken and vegetable stir fry.  I think we made enough to feed a small country.  It’s an Egyptian thing…Egyptian mothers only know how to cook for armys of people and I think I have inherited this gene.  I rarely can get the portions right.  I guess the theory is, I’d rather everyone be stuffed and have tons of left overs then for someone to walk away from the table a little hungry.  Crazy, I know.

Anyways, I think I went a little (by a little, I really mean a lot) overboard on the fresh veggies I bought to put in it: broccoli, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, mushrooms, carrots, onions, zucchini, eggplant, sugar snap peans…I couldn’t help myself but pick up every vegetable I love. This combination worked out perfectly! It couldn’t have been better.

I’m not going to make an ingredient list for this recipe, because everyone likes different vegetables.  So I’ll just walk you through the steps of how I put this all together!

1 Get some rice cooking. Rice typically takes awhile to cook so I started that first.

2. Chop 1 pound of  chicken breast into cubes.  Season with 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp ground red pepper (for spice)

3. Brown 1/2 cup of chopped onions and cubed chicken in pan.

4. While chicken is browning, chop vegetables in to cubes. Add about  tsp of olive oil to lightly coat vegetables, along with 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp of ginger, and 1/2 tsp red pepper (same spices that were on the chicken!).

5.  Put vegetables in separate pot on medium-high heat. Allow vegetables to cook through, mixing regularly.

Mary while mixing the vegetables, "I feel like a real housewife of Columbus."

6. Add 1/2 cup of soy sauce.  (I had a lot of veggies, so this might be too much soy sauce for you!) I used a light, low sodium soy sauce from the grocery store.  It was perfect.  Some soy sauces are too salty.  So taste yours before adding a ton to your veggies.

7.  Once veggies are cooked down and tender.  Add chicken.

8.  Serve on rice.  Dig in and enjoy!

After dinner a group of us went and saw a comedy show at the funny bone.  Mina got to see the third love of his life (#1. Me, #2. Diesel) Tommy Johngin.  He says I’m jealous of his love that he has for Tommy…but that’s not true.  I know I’ll always be number one.  Overall it was a successful dinner followed by a successful evening of friends and laughter. What more could I ask for?

Tommy's the one in plaid!