Daily Archives: November 2, 2011

My Little Poet

B was sitting on his stability ball in front of a window this morning, bouncing, staring out and talking to himself while I did some house work.  After about a half an hour he said, “Mama, I wrote a song.  Do you want to hear it?” “Yes!” I answered.  He did not sing his song; he spoke it.  I would call it a poem, but he insists that it is a song:

Migration, migration.
Like a Winter vacation.
You’ll find lots of food
To avoid starvation.
But when you go on
This big migration,
Just never forget –
It’s God Creation.
And that’s migration!

Milwaukee Pork Stew

I love this recipe.  It’s so flavorful, filling and has a hint of sweetness.  I made it once for the hubs, long before B was born, and he did not like it.  (I cut this recipe out of a Betty Crocker recipe book that I bought at the checkout stand in the ’90s.)  The hubs was not a soup man back then.  The past couple of years I have made more soups and stews and he is liking them during the Fall and Winter.  So if I had made this for dinner for all of us, he may have finally liked it.  But I didn’t give him the chance.  I didn’t want to set myself up for one of those dinners that I think is great only to hear complaints from both members of my peanut gallery and then have them request something else.  So I made them Baked Potato and Sausage Soup and kept the Milwaukee Pork Stew to myself.  (Although, if you look at the pictures of both dinners, the pork looks more like a “soup” and the potato and sausage looks more like a “stew”.)  I halved the recipe, which is at the bottom of this post.

I cut a big, sweet onion into rings and then quartered them.

 

Cubed 2, thick-cut pork chops b/c that is what I had on hand, but you can use a pork roast, as the recipe calls for.  I mixed the flour with some salt and pepper and tossed the pork pieces in  the flour mixture to coat.

 

Browned the pork pieces on all sides in a medium-high heat dutch oven.

 

Then I added my onions, a diced shallot I wanted to use up and garlic.

 

Stirred occasionally and cooked until the onions softened. I had to give you a shot with the crusty bits on the bottom of the pan – my favorite part of cooking!  That’s where all the flavor is!

 

I added the broth (beef b/c I had no chicken), beer, bay leaf, brown sugar and red wine vinegar.  I had no parsley so it was left out.  I had no caraway seed so I substituted celery salt.  Brought the pot to a boil, scraped up all the crunchies from the bottom of the pan, reduced the heat and cooked for 1 hr 15 minutes.

 

1/3 cup flour 
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 lbs pork boneless sirloin or shoulder, cubed 
2 tbsp vegetable oil 
4 large onions, sliced into rings and quartered 
1 garlic clove, minced 
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley 
1 tsp caraway seed 
1 bay leaf 
14.5 oz can chicken broth 
12 oz bottle of beer 
1 tbsp packed brown sugar 
2 tbsp red wine vinegar 
Mix flour, salt and pepper. Coat cubed pork with flour mixture. Heat oil in dutch oven over med-high heat. Cook pork in oil until lightly browned. Stir in onions and garlic. Cook 5 minutes, stiring occasionally. Stir in remaining ingredients. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat, cover and cook over med-low heat 1 to 1.25 hours, stirring occasionally, until pork is tender. Remove bay leaf. 8 servings.
 
Don’t forget to serve with The Bread!

Baked Potato and Sausage Soup

I made this for the hubs and B’s dinner on Halloween.  I was in the mood for Milwaukee Pork Stew and made that for myself.  This recipe is easy and quick and simple changes can make it gluten-free or dairy-free if you want.

2 baking potatoes, baked and cooled 
8oz smoked sausage, sliced and quartered
1/2 tbsp butter
1/2 a small onion, diced 
2 tbsp flour 
3 cups milk or chicken stock
3/4 cup frozen corn, rinse to thaw
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese 
Fresh ground pepper, salt and onion powder, to taste
Add butter to dutch oven and heat medium-high.  Cook sausage and onion in dutch oven until sausage browns and onions are soft. While they are cooking, cut cooled baked potatoes in half, scoop out flesh and mash with a fork. Save skins for an appetizer another night or just dice up potatoes with skins for this soup; I have done both. Once onions are cooked, sprinkle with flour, stir to coat for a few minutes to cook out the “floury” taste. Gradually add milk or stock, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Continue to stir until mixture thickens, scraping the brown bits off the bottom of the pan (the best part!). Add potatoes, corn and cheese to mixture and stir until cheese melts and everything is heated through. Add pepper, salt, onion powder and/or whatever other spice to suit your taste.  Serve with The Bread.
  • You can use fresh sausage that is GF and or DF in lieu of the smoked.
  • You can skip the flour or use a GF alternative
  • Use your favorite cooking oil in lieu of butter
  • The cheese can be left out and it will taste just as good
  • When I am planning this dish ahead of time, I’ll bake the potatoes in the oven with another night’s dinner to save energy.  If I am making this last minute, I throw the potatoes in the microwave for 8 minutes.
  • I made this the other night with milk b/c I was out of chicken stock, but I usually make it with chicken stock.
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