Tag Archives: recipe

Italian-Style Slow-Roasted Pork Butt

When I made my two-week menu plan and grocery list on the 6th, I added this recipe that I found on Wegmans website.  What attracted me to it was the ease of prep and the variety of meals I could get out of it.  So here goes…

Sunday night, I sliced up 3 oranges and 2/3 of the biggest onion you’ve ever seen!
I scored (cut criss-cross) the fat on top of my pork butt and rubbed all sides with minced garlic, salt, pepper and fennel seed.  Then I wrapped it up in plastic and stuck it in the fridge overnight.  Monday morning I set my convection oven (not my crock pot) to 275 degrees, unwrapped the pork, slid it in the oven and set my timer for 7 hours.  The first 3.5 hours, I thought the garlic smell was really strong.  I am a huge garlic lover, but I was hosting a homeschooling get together at the house that afternoon and I was worried about scaring off the other families.  By hour 4.5, however, the garlic had mellowed.  :o)
 You can shred the meat for tacos or add some BBQ sauce for sammies.  But I did not do that.  After it had cooled for about an hour, I put the roast on a platter, wrapped it up in plastic again and stuck it back in the fridge to solidify.  BTW, have you ever noticed that there is no “d” in the word “refrigerator” but there is a “d” in the word “fridge”?  Wazzup wit dat?
Tonight I pulled the roast out of the fridge and sliced off 3 pieces.  For those of you who are reacting squeamishly over the pink color of my pork, get over it.  Pork is safe to eat now.  You no longer have to cook pork all the way through like poultry.  But this pink color is not b/c it is raw or not cooked all the way through.  It’s b/c it had not been exposed to air yet.

I heated my non-stick skillet over medium-high heat and then dropped my 3 slices into the dry, hot pan.

I let them dry fry for 3 minutes and then turned them over for another 2 minutes.
Ta da!  I served it over garlic mashed potatoes with peas.  I had a busy day today, so I apologize for the lack of creativity on the veg.
I’ll tell you how to make wonderful garlic mashed potatoes without going overboard on the garlic flavor or biting down on a piece of garlic.  Into a small pan add 1/2 cup of milk and 3 or 4 crushed garlic cloves.  (Crushed means to lay the side of your wide knife on top of an unpeeled clove of garlic and pound once on your knife with the heel of your hand.  The clove will split somewhat and slide right out of the skin.)  While your potatoes are boiling, warm the garlic and milk up until the little heat “waves” rise up but not so that it simmers or bubbles.  When your potatoes are done, turn off the heat under your milk, too.  Throw the garlic cloves away and use the garlic-flavored milk as your liquid to mash the potatoes along with any butter, salt, pepper or sugar that you also may put in.  Yes, I said sugar.  I put sugar in my non-garlic mashed potatoes b/c my mom did when I was growing up.  And she did it b/c her mom put sugar in her mashed potatoes.  It actually tastes very good and I always get compliments on my patooties.  But you only put in a little bit.  Too much and your potatoes turn to glue.
The rest of my roast I cut into thirds and put into the freezer.  I’ll use them for tacos or BBQ sammies later.  Or, I might just fry up some more slices!

P.S. – the recipe says to reserve the juices for gravy and you can serve the onions with the pork, if you like.  There was not enough gravy to separate the fat in my gravy separator and the oranges had been so obliterated during cooking, you could not separate them from the onions.  So I had to toss it all.  But the pork was tender enough that I did not need any gravy.

Recipe – No Peeking Peking Chicken

Last week I made a new crock pot recipe out of my Rachel Ray Magazine called No Peeking Peking Chicken.  It was a big hit with all of us – phew!  As usual, I did not make the recipe according to directions; I made my own adjustments.  Did you expect any less?  ;o)


The recipe called for 8 bone-in chicken thighs, but I am only cooking for 2 1/2.  I bought a whole chicken, cut the two leg quarters off and just cooked with those.  The breast I will use in another recipe.  You have to fill your crock pot at least 2/3 of the way with food in order for things to cook properly.  The 2 leg quarters did not fill my 4 qt crock pot enough but were too much for my 1 1/2 qt crock pot.  So, I decided to slice up a few organic carrots on the bias and put them in the bottom of the pot to bulk it up.  That worked.  I put the leg quarters on top of the carrots and mixed the full recipe amount of sauce to pour on top.  It really did not make a ton of sauce.  However, after the cooking was done, there was plenty.
The recipe said to cook on low for 4 hours.  After over 2 hours the chicken, which I could see through the lid of the crock pot, had not even started to change color and I was worried it would not cook al the way through in time.  So I put the temp up to High for 1 hour and then put it back down to low for another 45 minutes.  When I opened the crock pot and took the meat’s temperature, it was really high.  I took the thermometer out when it reached 192 degrees b/c it was still climbing!  LOL!  It did not matter, however.  The chicken was plenty tender and juicy.  Next time, I will let it cook at the recipe’s time and temperature.  We served the chicken with brown rice and the carrots were flavored wonderfully with the sauce.
In the magazine, Rachel said to take your leftovers and make fried rice later in the week.  We, unfortunately, did not have any leftovers with which to make fried rice, but no leftovers is a good thing in my book.  Enjoy!

Recipes: Baked Potato and Sausage Soup with Beer Biscuits

The soup is a dump recipe I made up a couple of years ago as the result of a craving.

Baked Potato & Sausage Soup
2 baking potatoes, baked and cooled 
8oz smoked sausage, sliced 1/2″ thick and then 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 (optional)
Fresh ground pepper, salt and onion powder, to taste 
Cook sausage in dutch oven until brown; remove. Add onion to same pot and cook in sausage fat until soft. Add butter if needed in order to cook onions. While they are cooking, cut cooled baked potatoes up and mash with a fork. Once onions are cooked, sprinkle with flour, stir to coat and cook for a few minutes to cook off the flour 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. Add potato, sausage, corn and cheese to mixture and stir until cheese melts and everything is heated through. Add pepper, salt and onion powder and/or whatever other spice to suit your taste.

Do you know Paula Deen?  She ranks right up there with The Pioneer Woman, in my book.  Ben used to think she was really Mrs. Claus and Paula Deen was her alias.  I made her wonderful Beer Biscuits to go with the soup.  I usually half the recipe and bake 6 biscuits when it’s just us.  The hubs then eats the leftover biscuits for snacks.
Beer Biscuits


 4 cup Bisquick
1/2 cup sugar 
1 12-ounce can of beer 
2 tablespoon butter, melted 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix all ingredients well. Pour into well-greased muffin tins. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve with honey butter. Makes 12 – 16 biscuits. 
Honey butter: mix room temperature butter with honey in a 3:1 or 2:1 ratio, depending on your taste.
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