Saturday, October 23, 2010

Hasselback Potatoes

I found these interesting potatoes on foodgawker. (This picture with recipe is from How To: Simplify.) We really liked them. All of the recipes for them are pretty much the same and very easy. My favorite addition is to make very thin slices of garlic and press them in every two to three slits. Next time you are planning on making potatoes and don't want to add extra calories with cheese/sour cream, you should try hasselback potatoes!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Brown Sugar and Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin

I've been looking for a good pork loin recipe since it's something different than chicken and you can get it pretty cheap at the grocery store every once in a while. I made it tonight for dinner, and it was really nice for a change to be able to relax and not be in the kitchen than long. The sauce is sweet, but Brett approves, so it must go well with the pork! If you don't have ground sage, I wouldn't go buy it just for this. (At least I don't think it would make that much difference.) The sauce is what makes the pork.

Brown Sugar and Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin
Let's Dish


1 (2 lb) boneless pork loin
1 tsp ground sage
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 cup water

1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup water
2 Tbsp soy sauce

Combine sage, salt, pepper and garlic. Rub over roast. Place in slow cooker with 1/2 cup water. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. About 1 hour before roast is done, combine ingredients for glaze in small sauce pan. Heat and stir until mixture thickens. Brush roast with glaze 2 or 3 times during the last hour of cooking. Serve with remaining glaze on the side or drizzle glaze over the shredded pork.

Saturday, October 2, 2010


Yum. I was scared this was going to take all night, but it only took a little less than 2 hours from start to finish. (Ok, two hours is kind of a long time, but it's a hobby for me, so it's fun!) I adapted a recipe from Jaden Hair (Steamy Kitchen), and I still can't figure out how she doesn't end up with a ton of filling left over after making a package of dumplings... I'm going to say you need to half the recipe for one frozen dumpling pack. That, or you can use the full filling recipe and two dumpling packs, freezing a lot for later.

**Note: We don't usually eat really fatty foods, so unfortunately, these potstickers did not agree with my stomach. If I make them again, I am going to try ground turkey instead. (Not only is pork fatty, you don't drain the grease off since it cooks in the dumpling skin.) I had fun making them, though. :o)

Pan Fried Pork Potstickers

2 packages of frozen dumpling skins, defrosted overnight in refrigerator or 40 minutes room temp (do not microwave or set in water)

3 stalks green onions, cut into 2 inch sections
1/2 cup canned bamboo shoots
5 shiitake mushrooms, stems removed
1 lb ground pork (or ground turkey)
3 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp kosher salt (or 1 tsp regular salt)
2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp freshly grated ginger
For the slurry: 1 Tbsp cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup water
2 Tbsp cooking oil

Dipping Sauce
1 tsp garlic chili sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp rice wine vinegar

In a food processor, add the green onions, bamboo shoots, and shiitake mushrooms. Pulse several times until all of the ingredients are finely chopped. (You may need to use a spoon to wipe unchopped ingredients off the sides and back into the middle to ensure even cutting) In a large bowl, combine this mixture with the ground pork, soy sauce, sesame oil, salt, cornstarch, and ginger. Mix well.

Spoon 2 teaspoons of the filling onto dumpling skin. Brush a bit of the cornstarch slurry all around the edge of the dumpling skin. Fold over and press to secure edges. Make sure edges are sealed tightly. Shape the dumpling so that it has a flat bottom. Cover loosely with plastic wrap so that it doesn’t dry out. Go here to see a picture demonstration on how to do this.

When you are ready to cook, heat a large nonstick pan with 1 tablespoon of cooking oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot but not smoking, add half of the dumplings, flat side down, not touching, to the pan. Let fry for 1-2 minutes until the bottoms are light golden brown. Pour 1/4 cup of water into the pan and immediately cover with a tight fitting lid. Turn heat to medium and let the dumplings steam for 3 minutes. Open lid and let the remaining liquid cook off about 1-2 minutes. Cut into a dumpling to make sure that the filling is cooked through. Remove to plate, wipe the pan clean with paper towels (or wash) and repeat with remaining dumplings. Serve with dipping sauce.