Pierogies with Bacon and Brussels Sprouts

YIELDS | 4 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 10 MINS

COOK TIME | 35 MINS

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This is a semi-homemade, family pleasing, easy to make and incredibly tasty dish! The secret to this fast, savory and delicious dish is the store-bought pierogi. This dish comes together in minutes and I guarantee even Brussels sprout haters will become converts! Use vegan bacon or omit all together for a vegetarian version.

INGREDIENTS

* 8-10 strips thick cut bacon
* 2 lbs Brussels sprouts, about 30, rinsed, trimmed, cut in half lengthwise
* 2 packages (24) frozen Mrs T. Potato and cheese pierogies
* 1/4 cup good quality balsamic dressing
* 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
* Freshly cracked pepper and kosher salt

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 425° on a baking sheet lined with parchment, spread the bacon on the parchment and cook the bacon for 15 minutes.
2. Remove the bacon (it won’t be cooked all the way through), set aside.

3. Add the sliced Brussels sprouts and still frozen pierogie to the bacon fat and mix together until coated. Pop back in the oven and cook for 10 minutes more.

4. While the pierogie and Brussels sprouts bake, chop the bacon.

5. Remove the Brussels sprouts and pierogie from the oven and sprinkle with the chopped bacon. Bake for 10 more minutes.

6. Remove the pierogie mixture from the oven and let cool slightly and sprinkle with balsamic vinegar.

7. Carefully place the pierogie, bacon and Brussels sprouts on a serving platter. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, a few good cranks of cracked black pepper and flaky salt.

NOTES

Refried Bean, Lime and Cilantro Burgers

YIELDS | 4 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 10 MINS

COOK TIME | 15 MINS

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I discovered Pork Panko a while back and find it adds a wonderful flavor to beans and especially to my Refried Bean Burgers. I add lime to these burgers to brighten the flavor and the chilis give it a nice zing! This is an easy, go-to crowd pleasing recipe. Omit the Pork Panko to make it vegetarian or to enjoy on a Meatless Monday.

INGREDIENTS

Burgers:
* 2-15 oz cans favorite refried beans, pinto, black, etc.
* 1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
* 1/2 cup, or more to taste, Pork Panko
* 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
* 1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
* 1-4 oz can hot or medium diced green chilies, drained
* 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
* Freshly ground pepper
* 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/4 cup cilantro, minced
* 1 tablespoon lime juice
* 2-3 tablespoons olive oil for frying

Serving:
* 4 light and fluffy hamburger buns such as Brioche
* Lettuce, tomato, pickle, ketchup and whatever other condiments you like
* Slices of pepper jack or cheddar cheese, optional

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Mix all the ingredients together and form into patties. Sprinkle with additional kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
2. Heat a medium to large pan over medium heat and then add the oil.
3. Cook for about 5-7 minutes or until a nice brown crust forms and then flip and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes.
4. If using cheese, add it to the burger now and then garnish with your favorite condiments

NOTES

Note:
These burgers freeze well. I like to serve with fresh lettuce and tomato and a slice of cheddar cheese.
Happy Eating!

Pork Shoulder Picnic Ribs

YIELDS | 4-6 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 30 MINS

COOK TIME | 2 HOURS

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INGREDIENTS

• 3 lbs bone-in country style pork ribs
• 1 Tsp Old Bay seasoning
• Salt and pepper
• 3 Tbsps vegetable oil
• 1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped
• 1 stalk celery, chopped
• 1 small onion, chopped
• 4 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 Tbsps tomato paste
• 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
• 2 bay leaves
• Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
• 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
• 2 Tbsps water
• 1 Tbsp cornstarch
• parsley for garnish, optional
• Mashed potatoes, cauliflower or creamy polenta, for serving

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
2. Pat the ribs dry, then season with the Old Bay Seasoning, and then salt and
pepper to taste. Heat 2 Tbsps of the oil in a Dutch oven. Brown the ribs, cooking in batches, until all sides are browned. Remove all of the ribs to a plate.
3. Add the remaining Tbsp of oil to the pan. Add the carrot, celery and onions and cook until softened, 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another minute. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring to cook out the raw flavor, a few more minutes. Stir in the apple cider vinegar to deglaze the pan, then add the bay leaves and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper if needed.
4. Place the ribs back into the pan. Add the chicken stock (it should reach about halfway up the sides of the ribs.) Bring to a simmer, then cover the pan and transfer to the oven. Cook until the ribs are tender, about 2 hours. When about 1/2 hour remains, uncover the pan to allow the liquid to reduce a bit and for the pork to brown.
5. When the ribs are done, remove the pan from the oven to the stove. Transfer the ribs to a plate. Cover lightly with foil to keep warm. Whisk together the water and cornstarch, then stir into the liquid in the pan, cooking over medium heat. Cook until the sauce is slightly thickened. If desired, add the ribs back into the pan to be coated by the liquid.
6. Serve the ribs over mashed potatoes, cauliflower or creamy polenta. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

NOTES

Happy Eating!

Cuban Grilled or Oven Roasted Pork Roast

YIELDS | 12-16 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 20 MINS Plus marinating time

COOK TIME | 3-1/2-4 hours

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This dish is hands-down my favorite pork roast to make for summer dinner parties and family gatherings. The tangy, citrus marinade adds a wonderful fresh and savory flavor to the pork. The blended onion, garlic and spices add a warm rich flavor that combines deliciously with the citrus. It pairs equally as well with tortillas s it does with roasted or mashed potatoes. Make it on the grill or in the oven-your choice.

INGREDIENTS

Marinade:
• 2 2/3 cup lime juice and 1-1/3 cup orange juice
•1 tbsp ground cumin
•2 tbsp dried oregano
•2 heads garlic, roughly chopped 3 tbsp salt
•1 tbsp black pepper
•2 onions cut into rings

Pork Roast:
• 6 to 8 pounds boneless pork shoulder butt also known as a blade roast or Picnic roast

INSTRUCTIONS

Marinade the pork and make the basting liquid.
1. Mix all marinade ingredients in a bowl and let sit for 10 minutes
2. Place the pork in a deep bowl or container, season generously with salt and pepper and pour the marinade over the pork and place the onion on top of the pork.
3. If using a flavor injector, place the pork in a deep bowl or container and strain half of the marinade to use to inject the meat. Set the other half of the marinade aside. Pierce the flesh with the tip of the needle and inject it. Do this all over the meat until the strained marinade Is gone and then generously season the outside of the pork with salt and pepper and pour the remaining marinade over the meat.
4. Place the onion on the top of the meat and cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 24 hours. The longer the better.
5. Remove the meat from the marinade and place it on a platter. and bring it to room temperature.
6. Transfer the marinade and onions to a medium sized pot and bring it to a boil for at least two minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
7. Place the boiled marinade and onions in a blender, working in batches if necessary, and purée until smooth. The marinade is now ready to use as a baste.

Grilling Method:
1. Preheat the grill to 500 degrees for at least 15 minutes then reduce to to 300 degrees.
2.. Oil the grill grates with vegetable oil soaked paper towel held with a long pair of tongs.
3. Salt and pepper pork on both sides and grill the meat for about 2 1/2 hours total. Turn the meat over about every 45 minutes and marinate generously.
4. The meat will be ready when it reaches an internal temperature of 150° on the grill. It will continue to cook when you take it off the grill to the desired temperature of 160.

Oven Method:
1. Preheat oven to 325°.
2. Salt and pepper pork on both sides.
3. Place pork fat side up in a Dutch oven and cover, cook 3 1/2 hours.
4. Add cooked and blended marinade to the Dutch oven and roast, uncovered for one hour more or until tender.
5. Move pork to grooved cutting board to let cool. Save the au jus to serve along side the meat.

NOTES

Double Duty Recipe: This recipe morphs from a roast to tacos, burritos, pulled pork and freezes well too.
baking the roast, place the meat under the broiler for 3-4 minutes to char the top for extra flavor.
I like to cut some of the meat into chunks and large slices and shred some of it to use as pulled pork for sandwiches and tacos.
Serve with remaining au jus, tortillas or mash potatoes.