Apple Cheese & Bacon Stuffed Pork Chops

Pork Chops and Apple Sauce, not quite, but I do love saying that alla “Peter Brady”

There is something to be said about the delicious combination of pork and apples.  Especially when using thick cut boneless pork chops, apples, Gouda cheese, and bacon.  Yes, I said bacon!

Apple and Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops

I like this meal because it’s fancy enough to serve to guests, yet easy enough for a week night meal.

 

4.0 from 1 reviews
Apple Cheese & Bacon Stuffed Pork Chops
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 4 pork boneless chops (thick enough to cut a pocket through the side of each chop)
  • 1 small onion, chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 thin slices of Gouda cheese
  • 3 slices of bacon
  • 1 apple peeled, cored, and chopped into small dice (any firm apple will do)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme + a few sprigs to garnish
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Prepare pork chops by cutting a pocket into the side of each chop.
  3. Season each pork chop with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. Chop bacon in to small square pieces and fry in a oven proof skillet until crispy. Remove from pan and set aside in a medium size bowl. Add Thyme into the bacon.
  5. Remove all but 1 tablespoon of grease from the skillet.
  6. In the bacon skillet, add onion and chopped apples pieces and cook for about 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute or two.
  7. Once apple mixture is cooked add it to the bowl of bacon and stir to combine.
  8. Place a slice of cheese into each pork chop.
  9. Spoon a couple of spoonfuls of the apple bacon mixture into each pork chop.
  10. Place filled pork chops into the skillet and place in the pre-heated oven for 35 minutes or until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 150 degrees.
  11. Garnish with remaining sprigs of Thyme.

Leftovers…

My favorite way to reheat this meal is to cut up the pork chops and stuffing into bite size pieces.  Place a skillet on the stove over high heat.  Once the skillet is hot add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, then add the cut up pork chops.  Let the pork chops sit and caramelize before you move them about the pan to heat up.  The stuffing gets crispy and it is a delight!  I almost like it as much as I do the original meal.

Apple and Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops

Does your family enjoy stuffed pork chops?

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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Jenn’s Chicken Sandwich!

If you read my post last Tuesday then you know I am totally obsessed with the Jenn’s Chicken Sandwich I got at Wahlburgers.  It was so delicious, the very next day I had it at the restaurant I decided to recreated it at home.

And if I do say so myself, it came out pretty darn good!

Jenn's Chicken Sandwich

The hardest part of making Jenn’s chicken sandwich is the honey-garlic mayo. Do you want to know why it’s so hard?  You have to wait 45 minutes for the garlic to roast in the oven!!!  That’s it!

The good news?  Once it’s made you can use it on all sorts of things, besides having it on the sandwich it was really delicious to dip your fries into! YUM!

Jenn's Chicken Sandwich

TIP: Do you want to know a secret about making delicious oven baked frozen fries?  Put about a teaspoon of olive oil down on the baking sheet and toss the fries so they are all coated. When you bake them they will get that crispy exterior and soft interior.

Here is my recipe for the caramelized onions you will need for the chicken sandwich.  Cook them at the same time you are making the Honey-Garlic Mayo.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Jenn's Chicken Sandwich!
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 uncooked chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Caramelized onions
  • 2.8 oz can French fried onions
  • ½ cup baby spinach leaves, washed and drained
  • 2 heads of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 4 potato hamburger buns
Directions
  1. Place chicken breasts between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound until they are ¼ inch thick. Cut each chicken breast in half to fit on a bun.
  2. Lightly season with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in an oven safe skillet. Cook chicken for 3 minutes over medium heat, turning once. Place skillet in the oven for an additional 6 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees (or it is no longer pink inside).
  4. **FOR THE HONEY GARLIC MAYO
  5. Slice the top of the garlic so the cloves are exposed. Place garlic on a piece of foil. Drizzle garlic with the honey. Wrap garlic tightly in the foil and place in a 375 degree oven for 45 minutes. Let cool until safe to handle.
  6. In a medium bowl squeeze all of the cooked garlic, then add the mayo, and honey. Stir to combine breaking up the large garlic pieces. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  7. **TO ASSEMBLE
  8. Spread a good amount of the honey garlic mayonnaise on both interior sides of the bun.
  9. On the bottom bun add spinach leaves topped with 1 of the chicken cutlets, caramelized onions, and crispy french onions.
  10. Put the top on and enjoy!

 

Jenn's Chicken Sandwich

What is your favorite menu item you recreate at home?

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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Wahlburgers, West Hollywood

I was driving down Sunset Blvd. with some friends on a sunny afternoon looking for a restaurant to go grab an early lunch.  There is definitely not a lack of restaurants or types of cuisine along that strip in West Hollywood, but nothing we passed sounded good.  Until I came upon the corner of Sunset Blvd. and Sunset Plaza Drive.

That was it we had found our lunch spot!

Wahlburgers

Wahlburgers!

We arrived just as they were opening so we had the restaurant to ourselves for a few minutes.  It’s really cute inside.  It felt very comfortable to be there.

Wahlburgers

I thought it was adorable that they have Paul, Donnie and Mark’s favorite burgers/sandwich on the wall.

Wahlburgers

The bar area is cozy and the bright green chairs let you know exactly where the bar is located!

Wahlburgers

What we ordered:

  1. The Our Burger
  2. The Melt (on a bun)
  3. Jenn’s Chicken Sandwich
  4. Yukon Gold Fries (our only disappointment they just don’t give enough for the price)
  5. Vanilla Milkshake (they even make boozy milkshakes)

** Love the sauces:

The signature wall sauce was great to dip our fries in.  The mustard sauce on the The Melt was delicious and my favorite the honey-garlic mayo (and I don’t even like mayo)

Everything was something I would order again.  Especially the house made pickles.


Wahlburgers

I ordered Jenn’s chicken sandwich upon the encouragement of our waiter, Joe.  I was choosing between Jenn’s and the Thanksgiving Day Sandwich.  Both sounded yummy, but when our waiter Joe said take the chicken, I did!  It was DELICIOUS!  So happy I listened.  It is a seared chicken breast topped with both caramelized onions and crispy fried onions.  Then, they add their housemade honey-garlic mayo (YUM) and greens!  I’m craving it right now just thinking about it!

** It was so delicious I re-created it the very next day at home.  Check back here on Thursday for my recipe.

Wahlburgers

8615 Sunset Boulevard, West Hollywood, California 90069

424 276-3160

*parking is free, which is pretty cool for a L.A. area restaurant.

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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Avocado Hummus

It’s avacado season here in Southern California!

And I’m taking advantage of it and making it my mission to eat as many avocados as I can.

Avocado Hummus

I’ve decided to combine my favorite snack, hummus with my favorite fruit (more specifically a berry), avocado!  It is truly a match made in heaven.  The creaminess of the 2 blended together make the perfect good for you snack.

Avocados are very interesting.  Did you know they have more potassuim in them than a banana? They are also one of the few high protein fruits.  And last but not least, you can swap avocados for butter in your baked goods recipes.

Avocado Hummus

Back to the avocado hummus…It also makes the perfect party dip.  Serve it with veggies or my personal favorite warm pita chips.

No need to buy pre-cut, overly salted pita chips.

They are so easy to make, here’s how:

  1. Pita bread, sliced into 8 wedges
  2. Brush wedges front and back with oilve oil
  3. Place wedges in a single layer on a baking sheet
  4. Sprinkle with salt, as much or as little as you want
  5. Place into a preheated 400 degree oven until golden brown about 12 – 15 minutes

Easy peasy you’ve got warm pita chips!

Now for the star of the season….

Avocado Hummus

 

Avocado Hummus
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 15 oz can chick peas (garbanzo beans), rinsed, well drained and all skins removed
  • 3 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil + more to garnish
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • Water - if needed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 medium size ripe avocados, cored and peeled
Directions
  1. In a food processor combine chick peas, tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and avocados. Process until completely smooth.
  2. If needed, add 2 teaspoons of water at a time to make the mixture the consistency you like.
  3. Taste and adjust seasonings, add more lemon, salt, or pepper if needed
  4. Add a drizzle of olive oil and cilantro to garnish.
  5. *Serve with pita chips, vegetables, or crackers

 

What is your favorite go to healthy snack?

Avocado Hummus P

 

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Nothings says I love you like a plate of chocolate dipped strawberries!

They’re decadent, luscious, and they are the perfect sweet treat.  I love everything about them. Biting through the delicious chocolate to get to that delightful sweet strawberry inside.  They make an excellent gift for anyone who loves chocolate and nothing is better than a homemade gift to show someone you care.

I recently took a cooking class to learn how to properly dip strawberries.

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Here is what they taught me…

If you follow these very simple steps it is a cinch to make chocolate dipped strawberries look like you bought them from an expensive chocolatier.

  1. Wash your strawberries in the morning on the day you are going to dip your strawberries.  Make sure they are completely dry.  This makes a huge difference with how the chocolate adheres.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
  3. Melt chocolate chips (or candy coating) in the microwave or over a double boiler, following package instructions.
  4. Pour the melted chocolate into a container that is deeper than it is wide.
  5. Grab one strawberry by the stem and dip it into the chocolate.  Do not completely cover to strawberry with chocolate up to the stem.  It looks professional when about 1/4 inch of the strawberry is showing.  Place the strawberry onto the parchment paper and let dry on the counter.

For the drizzle

*This can be the same color chocolate or for a contrast use the opposite color.

  1. Using a sandwich bag place a small amount (it dries fast in the bag and you will waste the chocolate if you use a large amount) of the melted chocolate into the bag.
  2. Cut a small amount off of the tip of the sandwich bag.
  3. Drizzle the chocolate in any design you like over the hardened chocolate dipped strawberry.

Other Toppings

Sprinkles

Crushed cookie pieces

Crushed nuts

Mini chocolate chips

Crushed candy bars

How to store your chocolate dipped strawberries:

Chocolate dipped strawberries should be gifted and/or eaten the day they are made.  Although you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for a day they will not have the same luster and freshness and may have condensation.  Line the container with a paper towel to help wick away any of the moisture from the strawberries.

These are the chocolate dipped strawberries I made at home.

Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Have you ever made chocolate dipped strawberries? 

 

Until next Time…

XOXO

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Confetti Macaroni Salad


Confetti Pasta Salad

Something that people don’t really know about me is that I don’t like mayonnaise!  I actually detest it! But surprisingly enough, I LOVE it in this confetti macaroni salad!

My dislike of mayonnaise was so bad as a child that my mom would recreate recipes for me if the recipe needed mayo just to make sure that I would eat.  Like macaroni salad, she would make me a separate dish of pasta salad. I’m so grateful to my Mom, because I know most of my friends growing up had to just eat what their parents gave them. If they didn’t like it, they didn’t eat.

As I’ve gotten older, my detest for mayonnaise is just a dislike, I still don’t like it as a spread.

Confetti Pasta Salad

A few years back I was making this confetti macaroni salad for a summer BBQ and I decided to use half mayo and half plain yogurt in this recipe and it was delicious, so from that point on it has become my go-to confetti macaroni salad.

Confetti Macaroni Salad
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 16oz ditalini pasta
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup plain greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt (for pasta water)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 stalkes celery, finely diced
  • 1 small red onion, finely diced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, seeds and veins removed. Finely diced
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, small chunks
Directions
  1. Cook pasta according to the package directions. As soon as the water starts to boil prior to adding the pasta add salt. Once pasta is cooked drained and set aside to cool.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together mayonnaise, yogurt, vinegar, mustard, sugar, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Once pasta is completely drained and completely cooled pour pasta into a large bowl. Slowly pour the dressing mixture over pasta to help separate the pasta. Add as much of the dressing as you see fit.
  4. Now add in the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine.
  5. Store in refrigerator for up to 3 days.

As you can see I don’t like to over dress my macaroni salad.

 

Confetti Pasta Salad

This confetti macaroni salad would taste delicious with these Lemon Honey Chicken Drumsticks for the perfect summer meal.

Until Next Time…

XOXO

Confetti Macaroni Salad

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This entry was posted in Salads.

It’s Fiesta Time!

 

Some of these posts are sponsored posts.

In honor of Cinco de Mayo I thought I would do a round up of a few of my favorite Mexican dishes I have made over the years.  They are easy to make and they taste delicious.  So go ahead and pick one or a few to make your Cinco de Mayo a fiesta!

Breakfast

Let’s start with these Sunny Side Up Mexican Eggs.  Are you tired of the same old eggs for breakfast? These eggs will add the pizzazz you’re looking for to start your morning off right!

Mexican Eggs

Breakfast Tacos are so simple yet so quick and delicious!

Breakfast Tacos

Main Course

No Cinco de Mayo celebration is complete with out Shredded Beef Taquitos.  They are so easy to make and they come out perfect every time.  Try them out for your self.

Shredded beef TaquitosBeef Empanadas are one of my favorites and they are so very easy to make when using store bought pie crusts.

Side Dishes

Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Cauliflower take on a delicious Mexican twist when made with Salsa Verde.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Cauliflower

You can’t have a fiesta without Refried Beans!  These homemade refried beans are so easy to make and the perfect side to any meal.

Refried Beans. Easy to make & delicious!. Give it a try.

Want to make Restaurant Style Salsa at home? It’s so simple…

Restaurant Style Salsa

Do you call this next dish Pico De Gallo or Salsa fresca?  We call it delicious!

Pico De Gallo

Looking for a fruity twist on the average salsa?  Then be sure to try this Mango Salsa!

Mango Salsa

Beverages

Need something with a little flare to quench your thirst?  This Mango Margarita will be the perfect refreshing drink to pair with any Mexican inspired dish.

Mango Margarita

Sweets

These Pound Cake Churro Bites are always a party favorite.  They also make a scrumptious sweet treat at brunch.

Pound Cake Churro Bites

Happy Cinco De Mayo!  Please, be safe and DON’T Drink & Drive!

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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The Avocado Bagel ~ The 5 minute breakfast

In honor of Cinco De Mayo I’m sharing one of my favorite breakfast of all time!  It’s simple, it’s nutritious, and it’s delicious!

I love having it for breakfast, but it also makes the perfect afternoon snack!

My friends, I am pleased to introduce

my Avocado Bagel!

The Avocado Bagel

…and this is how I make this heavenly treat for my taste buds! Once you try it you’re going to want to eat it everyday.  Thank goodness it’s avocado season!

The Avocado Bagel I mash together avocados, lime juice, a bunch of cilantro, salt, pepper, and a green onion, optional (especially if you’re having it for breakfast).

The Avocado Bagel

Simple, right?

Then, I toast my bagel and smear a large helping of avocado mixture on both halves of the bagel.

The Avocado Bagel

Then I top it all off with thin cut quartered radishes and a bit more cilantro.

Side Note: When I was young my mom would make small knife cuts in a circular pattern all over a radish and throw the all the cut radishes in ice-cold water. Within an hour or so the cut area would open up and the radish would look like a rose.  My mom would garnish all holiday dishes with these rose looking radishes.  They were so pretty and such a wonderful childhood memory of mine.  I might just start making those pretty radish roses to garnish my cinco de may table!

Have fun and be safe out there!

 

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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Make A Double Batch Of Those Brownies!

Do you have a brownie lover in your home?

If you do then you better make a double batch of these scrumptious brownies. They are so delicious in no time there will be just crumbs left in the bottom of the pan!

Make a double Batch Brownies

Everytime I make these brownies I’m always asked for the recipe and I’m always hesitant to give it out.  It’s not that I’m one of those “no you can’t have my recipe” type of people (I think those people are ridiculous).  I enjoy giving out my recipes, hence the food blog!

It’s just that…

These brownies start out with a box mix.  There, I said it!  They are crazy good and they start off with a regular grocery store bought box.  It’s what you do to that box mix that makes them so delicious! They become the most decadent, fudgy, moist, perfect bit of heaven on earth!

Make a double Batch Brownies

5.0 from 4 reviews
Make A Double Batch Of Those Brownies!
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 Box of any brand brownie mix (18 - 20 oz. chewy or fudge style)
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ***FROSTING
  • 4 tablespoons butter, very soft
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • ¼ cup milk
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9X13 with parchment paper and lightly spray with baking spray.
  2. In a mixer add brownie mix, milk, butter, eggs, and vanilla and mix with the paddle attachment. Once full combined spoon batter into the sprayed parchment lined baking pan.
  3. Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  4. Set brownies aside to cool completely.
  5. To make the frosting:
  6. In a medium bowl whisk together the butter, cocoa powder, corn syrup, and sifter powdered sugar using a mixer or by hand. Spread the frosting over the cooled brownies.

So, if you’re a brownie lover or you know one, do yourself a favor and make a batch of these!

Make a double Batch Brownies

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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This entry was posted in Dessert.

Roasted Pickled Beets

Growing up I spent every summer at my Nonnas house and it was the best.  I have so many wonderful memories from those days.  She was an amazing cook and each of my memories is always attached with what she was cooking and what we were eating.

I always loved helping her pick vegetables from her garden.  She grew up on a farm in Sicily and loved to share all her knowledge in her sweet broken english way.  I was very young back then, but I can still hear her telling me “eat the beets they are good for your blood”.  All I know is, I ate the beets because were delicious and now I know just how good they are for you.

Pickled Beets 2

This recipe is how she taught me to pickle beets.

Most people boil the beets in water before pickling them, but my Nonna always roasted them.  This preserves the nutrients inside the beets rather than have the nutrients go into the water.

Pickled Beets

I cut the beets in squares because they are easy to eat out of the jar (my favorite way) and to put on salads.

Pickled Beets
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 pound beets
  • ½ of a red onion, cut into strips
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¾ cup of water
  • olive oil to coat the beets
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Wash the beets and trim the stems t.
  3. Lightly brush the beets with olive oil and wrap each in aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet. Roast for 45 to 55 minutes (time will vary depending on the size of the beets).
  4. The beets are ready when a fork is inserted into the center and it comes out cleanly.
  5. Allow the beets to cool enough so they can be handled. Unwrap the foil and using a paper towel gently rub the beets to remove the skin.
  6. Cut the beets into the desired shape and set aside.
  7. In a sauce pan combine vinegar, salt, sugar, and water. Simmer until all the sugar is completely dissolved.
  8. In glass jars with tight fitting lids layer the cut beets and sliced onions.
  9. Pour the liquid over the beets and onions.
  10. Cover tightly with lid and place in the refrigerator for 5 day prior to eating. Pickled beets will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

Pickled Beets

 

Until Next Time…

XOXO

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