Monday, August 16, 2010

Kalua Pig

This one is from our friends the Changs who served it at their daughter's 2nd birthday party, and it was AMAZING! I was suffering from early pregnancy nausea but this was one dish I just loved. Don't be thrown off by the leaves. They told us if you are sticking it in the slow cooker to just forget about the leaves. I just left them in the recipe for authenticity.

2 lbs. pork shoulder
1 Tablespoon Hawaiian salt (coarse sea salt)
1 Tablespoon liquid smoke
1 banana leaf
2-3 large ti leaves, ribs removed
1 cup water

Score pork on all sides with 1/4-inch deep slits about 1 inch apart. Rub pork with 1/2 tablespoon Hawaiian salt, then rub with liquid smoke. Wrap pork in the banana leaf, then wrap completely in ti leaves. Tie with string and wrap in foil. (Omit the leaves part if using slow cooker.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pork in shallow roasting pan and add 1 cup water. Roast for 4 hours. (Or, roast in slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours.)
Shred pork and let stand in 1/2 tablespoon Hawaiian salt dissolved in 1 cup boiling water with a few drops of liquid smoke before serving.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Penne Rustica

Here's a copycat recipe from the Macaroni Grill menu - another favorite Italian chain. It's a BIG recipe and great for freezer meals.

12 oz. grilled chicken breast (marinate in olive oil and garlic salt overnight, then grill on barbecue for best flavor)
½ pack thick bacon
48 oz. (3 boxes) penne pasta
2 large red bell peppers- diced
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
½ tsp paprika

Gratinata Sauce:
2 tsp butter
2 tsp chopped garlic
1 cup marsala wine OR 1/3 cup apple juice + 2 tbsp red wine vinegar +enough chicken broth to equal 1 cup
1 tsp dijon or dry mustard
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chopped rosemary
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
8 cups heavy cream

Sauté garlic in butter in large pan. Add marsala wine, mustard, salt, rosemary, cayenne pepper, and heavy cream. Cook pasta according to directions. Cook bacon. Slice chicken into medium-bite size pieces. Combine sauce, cooked pasta, diced chicken, cooked bacon, bell peppers, parmesan cheese, and paprika and mix thoroughly. Spread in pans. Top with chopped rosemary and mozzarella cheese. Bake @ 475 for 10 minutes.
[If frozen, thaw in refrigerator the day of. Cover with foil and bake @ 375 for 1 hour. Remove foil during the last 15 minutes.]
Number Of Servings: Yields one 8×8 and two 9×13 casserole dishes.
Preparation Time: More than an hour

Pollo Rosa Maria

This is a knock-off of a dish that once appeared on the menu at Carrabba's Italian Grill, one of our all-time favorite Italian chains. And a sort of approximate (and typically, stolen) picture.

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, split for stuffing
4 slices prosciutto ham
½ cup fontina cheese

Lemon Butter:
½ cup clarified butter
3 cloves garlic
½ small yellow onion, diced
¼ cup white wine
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
½ tsp. white pepper
½ tsp. salt
8 oz. sliced mushrooms
½ cup fresh sweet basil, chopped
1 lemon, juiced

Chicken: Open chicken breasts and place butterfly-style on grill over white-hot coals of live oak and pecan wood. (*Krista’s note: yeah, or just send your husband out to the gas grill. Or stick them in a pan or in the oven.) Grill 3-5 minutes per side or until cooked through. Remove from grill. When cool enough to handle, hold breast halves together and stuff each with one slice of prosciutto and 1/8 cup fontina cheese. Secure with toothpicks. Set aside in a warm place.

Lemon butter topping: In a large sauté pan over medium heat, combine clarified butter, garlic, and onion and sauté until tender. Deglaze pan with white wine. Add unsalted butter, salt, and pepper. Add mushrooms and sauté 1-2 minutes or until cooked. Add basil and lemon juice; stir to combine. Place chicken on a serving platter and top with mushrooms in lemon-basil butter and serve.

German Pancakes

6 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
½ teaspoon salt
5 Tablespoons butter

Whip eggs until thick and lemon-colored. Add milk, flour, and salt. Melt the butter in a bundt pan. Pour the batter on top of the melted butter. Bake at 450 degrees for 20-30 minutes. The pancake should almost reach the top of the bundt pan and be browned on top. Turn onto a plate, cut and serve with syrup. You can also make this in a 9 x 13 pan – bake for 15-20 minutes.