But I didn't come back this afternoon to talk about snoring kitties, numb limbs and needing the bathroom. No, there are much bigger and better things to discuss. For one example, food. Yummy food. Food that makes you sit back with a content sigh and a happiness to be alive.
*ah, that works, TBG just got home from work, and Sephiroth moved to greet him. Welcome back left hand! Typing will be so much quicker and easier now!*
Where was I? Ah yes, food that makes the tastebuds shiver and delight, and makes your tummy happy to be your tummy. I do find it rather amusing, all in all. I get told I have food sensitivities to the point of near allergy, and that I need to cut out those foods. In my mind, I'm thinking that my food enjoyment level is going to massively drop. But, in reality, it's so far from the truth! Now, for once in my life, I am really going out of my way to experiment and try new foods, to see what new flavors and textures I can find. I have discovered sauces and glazes that are heavenly-that I would never had tried if it wasn't for this! Found new grains and healthy options, new vegetables, and new ways to cook the fruits and veggies that I've had countless times. I'm eating healthier than ever before-and I'm eating more diversely than ever before! I didn't realize that I was in a bit of a cooking rut before, but looking back, I can see I kinda was. I had my two months worth of approved meals, and I just rotated them. How boring! I'm learning to cook with what's in season-using fruits and vegetables that are in their peak times-with flavors that are simply explosive and exquisite! I have to think outside the box, what can I make that doesn't have wheat, sugar, dairy, corn or oats? I can't really on a simple pizza to throw in the oven when I'm fed up with cooking. I can't just order out, or pull a ready-made meal from the freezer. (which is a good thing, considering the preservatives and calories and general unhealthiness of it all. All of which I hadn't really thought about until I'm at this point, and I've discovered how much better my body functions without all that junk) My eyes have been opened to a whole new way of life-and it's beautiful!
Yes, I have developed quite the passion for the kitchen. I think my sole reason that I want to move now is just so I can have more kitchen space. Can you imagine? *drools at mental picture* All the counter space...and the cabinet space to store my various doodads and gadgets....ohh...it's so pretty...
I can only hope and pray that some of my enthuiasim will rub off onto those who read this. The kitchen is no boring place-unless you allow it and make it into a boring place. Have fun! Turn up some music and get ready for the kitchen dance! The mind that's whirling away, the hands that are chopping and dicing to the rhythm of the kitchen, the step-twirl of moving pans and ingredients from one side of the kitchen to the other, the delight that comes from what's happening...it is a dance. And it is lovely.
Food. Up until this point, I just took food for granted. It was something the Lord made for us to give us sustenance and nutrition. And it was also sometimes colorful and pretty, and usually tasted good-depending on what it was-although some things I thought were disgusting. But it was just that. Food. Meh. Now I have an appreciation for food. And for all this, I am grateful for my nutritionalist and my food sensitivities.
All that to get to the point. Last nights dinner. Seared pork chops with a plum glaze, roasted sweet potato's and green beans. Oh baby. Oh baby. TBG and I were amazed. Our mouths were filled with such wonderful flavors, the sweet and tangy, the savory....mmm...and thankfully, our pork chops were HUGE, so we each cut our chop in half and saved that half for tonights dinner. ^_^ So tonight I'm making more roasted sweet potato's and green beans. Which we're already looking forward to. With eager anticipation.
We'll start with the roasted sweet potato. Technically, it was only one sweet potato, and a pale gold at that. But it was also a very large potato! Peel it, slice it into rounds, cover with 2 tsp EVOO and some salt and pepper (1/2 tsp each). Bake in oven that's preheated to 400 for 30ish minutes. You may need to go as long as 45 minutes to get the crispier edges. (or, if you are actively in the kitchen, turn it up to 425) I flipped mine at about 20 minutes, so both sides would be lovely and roasted. Serve hot.
|Peeled-so how huge it is?!|
|Diced up. I find it easiest to put all the potato in a bag, add the EVOO|
and salt and pepper to them in the bag, and then shake it around. Gets
a more even coating.
But that's just a simple side dish that's really, really good. The amazing dish is the main dish. Seared pork chops. With plum sauce. *melts just thinking about it* I have to give Shauna the credit-she's amazing. I got this recipe from Gluten Free Girl and the Chef. If you haven't checked out her site-you are missing out! Google Gluten Free Girl and the Chef-you'll find her on the top of the list. (she has a blogspot like mine) Amazing food. Amazing!
2 TBSP high quality, unsalted butter
1 red onion, finely chopped
12 plums, washed and quartered
a handful sugar-or 1/4 cup honey
2-3 TBSP balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup orange juice (I just squeezed fresh oranges, added actually closer to a full cup than half a cup..oh well!)
- Melt the butter over medium high heat.
- Add the onion and stir until it gets soft-then add the plum slivers. Stir and saute that yummyness.
- When those plums start to get soft and sag, add the vinegar and sugar/honey.
- Let those simmer-and while they simmer, sear those pork chops! Sear them in hot oil in an iron skillet, so once those are done and ready, it can go in the oven. Preheat the oven if you aren't making the sweet potato's)
- When the plum flesh is tender and falls apart at a fork touch, add the orange juice. Simmer and stir until the smell drives you crazy. (or you become impatient. Whichever is first)
- Pour that amazingness over your seared pork chops. Pop it all into the oven for about 20-30 minutes. If you have a meat thermometer, wait til it reads 155 degrees in the meat. If not, just wait for about 25 minutes. (of course, if you have uber thick chops, I'd recommend waiting longer)
- Bring out of oven, serve, and enjoy!
|Butter and onion-I have to admit, I'm not a big fan of onion,|
but it smelled soo good in that there butter!
|Searing the pork chops. I randomly used|
peanut oil for no reason, other than it was there to be used.
|Just added the plums. Mmm..|
|With the balsamic vinegar, and after being cooked for awhile|
|Some of my plums weren't at the desired level of tenderness, so I helped|
them to tenderize. ^_^ A few whirls helped break em down. Which was really
nice, because then we had large chunks of plum, and smaller, thicker glaze.
|Poured that plum glaze over, popped in the oven, and this is what it looked |
like when it came out! Does that not look utterly amazing?!
|All together here. Next time I make this all again, I plan to use|
"normal" yams-the vibrant orange/red. I let TBG pick out the ones I use--
the pale gold. They taste great-but I enjoy the color of the others better. ^_^
The sauce serves 4 people, is 77 calories and 6 carbs.
The roasted sweet potato's serve 2 people, and are 113 calories and 12 carbs.