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Daily Archives: January 7, 2011

Garlic Parmesan Orzo

This recipe was based on something I found on http://www.allrecipes.com and thought it was fantastic!  The only real change that I made was adding a little more milk than the recipe called for, because it was done a bit before everyone was over for dinner, and I didn’t want it to dry out too much.

This recipe is definitely a keeper!  Beyond easy and very yummy.  It could easily be made into the star of the meal by adding chicken or shrimp and/ or scallops to it.

2 cups uncooked orzo pasta

3 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup milk

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cook orzo according to package directions; drain. In a large skillet, saute garlic in butter until tender. Add the orzo, Parmesan cheese milk, parsley salt and pepper. Cook and stir until heated through.

I forgot to take pics of sauteing the garlic, but I’m sure you can figure that part out!

Herb Crusted Pork Roast

This is adapted from a recipe that I found on http://www.crockpot.com  It turned out to be tender and yummy!  (I need to start keeping a thesaurus nearby to find synonyms for delicious).

3 to 3 1/2 pounds center cut boneless pork roast
10 to 12 cloves garlic, left whole, removed from skin
coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 to 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs, (I used Italian seasoned)
1/2 to 3/4 cup dijon mustard
3/4 cup fresh herbs, such as tarragon, oregano, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, minced (I used some thyme and rosemary)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chicken stock
I couldn’t find a pork roast big enough, so I actually used 2 smaller roasts (one a little over 1 pound the other of a little over 2 pounds).
In a bowl, mix the bread crumbs, mustard and herbs. Mixture should have the consistency of a wet paste. Add more bread crumbs or mustard if necessary.
Pat the mixture onto the pork. With remaining ¼ c of crumbs, dust the pork.
Pour olive oil into bottom of slow cooker and swirl to coat. Place pork in slow cooker.
Cook on low for 8 hours. Transfer pork to cutting surface and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing into ¾ – 1 inch pieces.
Return stoneware to Crock Pot and turn up to high. Using a whisk, add ¼ c chicken stock (and additional 1T of mustard if necessary) to pan juices. Pour over sliced pork.
I actually thought that the bread crumbs turned out too soggy and didn’t look appetizing to me.  So, I broiled the roast for about 10 minutes which got the crust so nice and crisp and it still kept the pork nice and moist.
And, I did forget about the sauce until we were started to eat, but we didn’t think we need it.  But, I did taste a bit of the drippings while I was cleaning up and it was delish!  So, I did add the chicken stock and will definitely be eating that with leftovers!  And, lucky for me (and my coworkers) there are lots left!  I need to learn that recommended serving sizes are wayyyy too much.

 

Spinach Flatbread

I based this little appetizers from a tasty dish from TGI Fridays.  I had some flat bread from Trader Joe’s  and knew that I would never use it all up, so decided to try my own spin on it.

1 box frozen chopped spinach

1 block 1/3 fat cream cheese

1 TBS sour cream

1 TBS mayonaise

1 tsp garlic salt

2 pieces flat bread

2 cups mozzarella cheese

Defrost spinach and drain well.  Mix next 4 ingredients with the spinach.  Spread mixture on the flat bread and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.  Bake at 350 for about 10-15 minutes or until bubbly.  Then sprinkle with some shaved parmesan cheese.

I <3 dinner party Thursdays!

Tonight was a great night with 5 of my college girlfriends over.  After a scrumptious (if I do say so myself!) dinner, we cuddled up on the couch (yes 6 “grown ups” squeezed on the couch) and looked through college photo albums that Heather brought over.  It was so fun to see our baby faces and reminisce and laugh about how we met and fun nights that we shared.  I am truly blessed to have such great people surrounding me.  It was a much needed fun and a great way to spend the first week of 2011.  Nights like this truly make my apartment feel like home 🙂

It was also my friend Nicky’s birthday yesterday, so dinner was also a celebration of her and another great year for her.  Last year Nicky mentioned a couple of times how we were getting old, and I don’t like the thought of that.  So, I wanted to put a stop to that nonsense!  So, last year for her birthday, we started the tradition of only toasting and celebrating a fantastic new year which is always bound to be full of exciting adventures and challenges.  We have carried it through several birthdays, and carried through tonight with a bubbly toast to her.  So, once again, Happiest of Happy Birthdays, Nicky!!

The next few posts were what we had for dinner tonight…

And these are a few of  mi amores…  I am in the process of setting up my old college desk top to get my pictures, so if I find any really good baby face ones, they may be popping up at some point!