Did you catch me talking sausage toppings on WBTV this morning? Check out the video link below!
Here we are, in the height of backyard barbecue season, with literally dozens of ketchup and mustard covered hot dogs under our belts, and I.am.bored. Don’t get me wrong, I love that classic combo, but sometimes I crave to shake things up a bit. Get a little spicy, a little saucy, a little something like THIS:
TOPPING REMIX #1: a Mexican-inspired sandwich using Johnsonville Chorizo Sausage topped with some of my homemade guacamole and fresh pico de gallo. Incredible flavor, practically impossible to eat just one.
TOPPING REMIX #2: a Johnsonville Turkey Sausage with Cheddar topped with barbecue sauce and a simple lightened up slaw. Hearty and healthified without sacrificing a pants size.
Growing up, pork chops were one of my least favorite family dinners. Coated in Shake n Bake and cooked, and cooked until they were so firm a steak knife would bow as you sawed through them, it was one of the few meals I wouldn’t fight my brother for seconds on. They ranked only slightly higher than hobo dinners, yet, just like those horrid foil packets of sliced kielbasa and mushy vegetables I dreaded, the chops required a vat of Ranch dressing to make them swallowable. Of course, this was before the USDA revised the temperature guidelines for cooking pork. The new rule-of-thumb is 145 degrees and 3 minutes resting time, which results in one juicy, tender chop. Voilà:
Speaking of revisions, did you know pork cuts recently underwent a renaming process? I had no idea, until I started searching for this month’s North Carolina Pork Council Blog Network featured cut of pork: the Porterhouse Chop, formerly known as the pork loin chop. I found this handy reference image on the Pork Be Inspired website:
For these chops, I was shooting for big, bold flavors and juicy meat — something a wee bit crazy to put the chops of my childhood to shame. (more…)
Back in 2010, I made a personal vow to focus on healthy eating (read all about it here). This was a challenge for me, the girl who considers bread, brie, and wine a square meal, so I started with small things, like packing a homemade lunch each day, instead of relying on Lean Cuisines and fast food. Slowly, I established a routine of making healthy choices whenever I was the one in control of the preparation (well, MOST of the time, anyway), which lets me enjoy eating at restaurants without worrying quite so much about all the salt and the butter and delightful carbohydrates I’m consuming.
One of my healthy eating goals for 2014 is to incorporate more kale into my diet, as part of the Kale Up campaign. Kale is a green I’ve shied away from in the past, other than occasionally tossing a few handfuls into a nice bean soup. Kale is a very hearty green — you don’t have to worry about it going limp or getting soggy. I often find kale salads are even better when the kale has a bit of time to “marinate” in the dressing.
Ohhhh pork. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
Wait. Did I mention barbecue?
Seriously, though. Pork tenderloin is a super simple, oober delicious and versatile cut of meat. My all-time favorite tenderloin recipe is my Sweet Chili Pork Tenderloin. Roasting the pork in the oven is so simple (arguably fool-proof), I decided to use the same approach for this recipe, which utilizes some of those sweet summer tomatoes starting to pop up in the markets.
This is the first of five pork recipes I’ll be creating for the North Carolina Pork Council Blogging Network in 2014. Did you even know there was such a thing? Admittedly, I did not, but when the Pork Council comes a knockin on your inbox, you say YES, PLEASE.
My passion for barbecue was discovered late in life, at the ripe age of 26, at the very same time and the very same instant I discovered my soulmate of the meat variety. PORK. Thank you Charlotte, for introducing this Ohio girl to your precious piggy bounty, abundant sauces, and deep-rooted opinions on all things ‘cue.
Though it greatly annoys me when a recipes calls for two cups of “your favorite barbecue sauce,” I’ve never attempted to make my own before now. It’s something I’ve left to the professionals (aka Midwood Smokehouse, my favorite barbecue joint in town). I favor BBQ sauces that are heavy on the vinegar (that’s eastern NC style for you BBQ neophytes), but I’m also coming around to the sweeter, ketchup-based sauces. So this recipe, my first ever BBQ sauce, is a mash-up of the two, a combo that’s united with a heavy hand of Four Roses Bourbon. Bourbon and barbecue? Puh-lease.