Stuffed Roast Pork

We were out Saturday night for dinner with some friends.  We ended up going out to a German restaurant on Long Island and I ended up eating pork loin, which happened to be on the menu for Sunday dinner this week.  I prepared the loin to cook this morning, but decided to wrap and hold it in the refrigerator for Monday instead.  This meal is one generally reserved for holidays, but my husband has been asking me to make it since I didn’t make it on our last holiday.  He purchased the meat and brought it home, so how could I possibly say no.

My dinner friends have been friends since we were in kindergarten.  These are the best kind of friends to have, as you have so many shared memories.  We went all through schooling together K – 12, so there’s nothing we didn’t experience together growing up.  I’m thankful we have kept in touch through our adult years and truly enjoy the times we spend together.  I wish we lived closer to each other, but we still manage to see each other several times each year.  Each time we meet, there’s tons of laughter and reminiscing of days gone by.  Gail is the memory keeper who inevitably cleans a closet and finds a photograph, or note we wrote each other back in junior high school.  This was the 1970s version of a group text.  It’s so much fun to read something your younger self wrote.  Marianne was always the level headed one in the group, whose current self loves to call to question that label.  Barbara, who couldn’t make it this time, was and continues to be the wild child who keeps us laughing all night.  These ladies have shared much of my life journey and I’m thankful to have them still in my life.

 

Sunday morning we decided to hold off on our roast, but I still needed to prepare it for cooking.  I came across a cooking page – Cooking with the Kingfish – recently that showed an easier way to cut a roast for stuffing.  I decided to try that out with this roast and it worked out well, super easy.  I prepared my sausage stuffing, cut the roast, pounded, stuffed, rolled and tied it for roasting  It was then placed in a roasting pan and wrapped for overnight.  On Monday, my husband will place it in the oven while I am at work for roasting.

Sausage Stuffing 

Ingredients

  • Onion chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • Sausage meat (I used sweet removed from casing)
  • Rye bread (half loaf)
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Chop celery and onions small and saute in tablespoon of unsalted butter until soft (4 minutes)
  2. Add sausage meat and brown
  3. Add chopped garlic and cook for 1 minute201C0C63-77F3-4F6F-9438-08BFD13E7EC2
  4. In separate bowl place cubed bread
  5. Pour sausage and vegetable mixture over bread
  6. Add egg and spices77BE9931-9B1C-43F5-8283-6F5C3492B94C
  7. Add 1/4 cup of chicken stock
  8. Mix with hands until fully blended and set aside.110671EF-D293-4432-9CB2-1796FC68085D

Stuffed Roast Pork Loin

Ingredients:

  • 5 lb boneless pork loin
  • 1 onion chopped large
  • olive oil
  • 4 sweet potatoes chopped into large pieces (1 – 1/2 inches)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Pour cup of coffee because it’s far too early for wine and turn on Alexa for dancing in the kitchen.
  2. Rough chop onion and place in roasting pan
  3. Wash and pat dry roast and place on cutting board
  4. Slice gently with sharp knife the long way, almost in half but do NOT cut all the way through.
  5. Unfold the roast.
  6. Starting at center and moving toward outer edge slice in half without cutting all the way through and unfold
  7. Repeat this step on other half
  8. Place plastic wrap over roast and pound to even out24F53EB9-799A-477D-A46F-12D2FF793BF0
  9. Place stuffing on top of flattened roast and spread evenly07044235-8043-4E38-816D-DF4F3C2AC7F8
  10. Roll roast long way much like you would a jellyroll cake.
  11. Tie roast with roasting twine7D259DF6-07E8-41EC-A1A6-8986D68EACE7
  12. Rub pork with 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with paprika.
  13. Stir together the flour, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the seasoned flour mixture evenly over the pork loin. (I didn’t put the flour on yet in the photo below. I’ll do that tomorrow, just prior to roasting.)
  14. Place on top of onion and sweet potato in roasting pan5063D2D3-BC4D-4556-AA74-0CAD47741C70
  15. Add 1 cup of chicken stock to bottom of pan
  16. Roast in oven at 450 degrees F for about 10 minutes.
  17. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F and continue to roast for 60 minutes
  18. Insert meat thermometer into pork – not stuffing – ready when 150 – 155 degrees F
  19. Let pork rest for 10 – 15 minutes.  Temperature should be 160 degrees F
  20. Slice with sharp knife and serve

In the past I just cut the roast almost in half and stuffed.  Rolling it made distribution of stuffing more even and presentation was much nicer. Delicious and enough for my dad and leftovers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not My Mother’s Meatloaf

When I was a little girl nothing disgusted me more than meatloaf.   There was nothing about my mom’s meatloaf that appealed to me.   Seriously, who puts ketchup and raw onion in their ground beef?   I hated onions as a kid and putting ketchup on anything grossed me out – just ask my cousin how her dad tortured me with that one.  As meatloaf was a favorite of my father, it was in mom’s weekly rotation.   Gosh how I remember feigning sickness every time it came around on the menu.

When we were first married, my husband mentioned to me that he liked meatloaf.   I thought I had escaped this meal, but it was rearing it’s ugly head again.  I said I’d look around at some recipes and see what I could find.   I hoped he’d forget all about it, but he brought it up again a few weeks later.   I knew that I loved meatballs, so there had to be a way I could like meatloaf.  I vowed to have an open mind and give this meal another try.

We don’t eat meatloaf often around here, maybe once or twice a year.  After a lot experimenting I found a recipe we both can agree on.  Thankfully, it doesn’t require ketchup or raw onions, though that likely wouldn’t bother me as much anymore.   This recipe is very simple to make and we have had many different variations of it.   Depending on your tastes and side dishes you can change the filling to whatever you’d like.  Be creative and have fun with it.

My version of meatloaf is more or a stuffed meat log.   We’ve used chopped turkey or beef, but both prefer beef.   When we are in the mood for roasted potatoes, I fill the log with feta cheese and spinach.   When, like today we want a little sauce I fill the log with mozzarella cheese and spinach. Either way you make it, there’s likely not going to be much left.

This recipe as written was enough for two, with a care package for my dad.   Even though it’s not my mother’s meatloaf, dad still really enjoys it.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb grass fed ground beef
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup flavored bread crumbs
  • 1 medium egg
  • 1/2 cup crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 lb mozzarella cheese chopped
  • Fresh organic baby spinach

Directions

  1. Pour a glass of Malbec and turn on Alexa for dancing in the kitchen. 38B1C00C-2345-4189-9151-2AE4F8E082AE
  2. Mix ground beef, egg, Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs and crushed tomatoes in Kitchen Aid mixer with paddle attachment.
  3. Spread mixture onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  B82B5BD3-BF30-4D98-9274-6F4A5490E813
  4. Put layer of chopped mozzarella and baby spinach on top of beef, spreading evenly.  Leave about 1/2 in border clear.  85D6CDAF-953B-4CCF-8664-90E812C620D9
  5. Lifting parchment paper, begin rolling beef into a log. End with seam down.  E4F405A6-549F-4622-BD21-349725389C57
  6. Place on greased, lined baking sheet. Be sure the tray has a lip to prevent grease from dripping in oven.
  7. Bake at 350 for 45-60 minutes, or until cooked through.
  8. Serve immediately with or without sauce.082BBFE8-6021-492E-803A-B79ACDF915F4

We ate ours tonight with homemade potato gnocchi and a touch of Sunday sauce. Delicious!

Recipe for homemade gnocchi can be found here – Pete’s Lemon Basil Chicken with Gnocchi

Recipe for Sunday sauce can be found here – Sunday Sauce

Let me know if you try any of these recipes.  If you have a favorite recipe you’d like to share, send me a note below.

 

Recipe Swap – Hot Toddy

I was under the weather this past week with a miserable cold and cough.  I wasn’t sure at first if it was allergies or a cold, but after a few days of horrible coughing I knew it was a chest cold.  Anyone that knows me knows I hate taking medicine, especially long term.  I did take something for the cough, but it really wasn’t helping all that much.  When all else didn’t work, I channeled my inner German/Irish grandmother and made myself a cup of hot toddy.  I couldn’t believe how much relief I got from that cup of tea.  I slept like a baby and didn’t cough during the night.

The next few days I had a cup or two of this mix and my chest cleared.  I do still cough occasionally, but overall am feeling better.  Those old wives tales sure do come in handy sometimes.  Here’s the recipe I used for my toddy.

Laura’s Hot Toddy

Ingredients

  • Organic green tea
  • 1/4 tsp raw organic honey
  • 1 tsp organic lemon
  • 1 tsp Bragg’s Apple Cider vinegar
  • 1-2 tbsp Slivovitz (you can use Jack Daniels instead)
  • 1 sprinkle of Cayenne pepper

Directions

  1. Boil the tea and steep for 3 minutes
  2. Add all ingredients and stir
  3. Sip and enjoy the warmth (I love the Cayenne pepper heat)

My first cup, I admit to using a full shot of the Slivovitz to aid my sleep and it worked like a charm.  First relief I had in days.  If you don’t want any alcohol (though over the counter medicines contain it too) you can eliminate the alcohol and up the sprinkle of pepper.

Do you have a home cold remedy recipe to share?  Please comment in the box below, I’d love to hear about new remedies.  If you try mine, let me know what you think.

Prince of Peace Organic Green Tea 100 Tea Bags

 

Madhava Natural Sweeteners Organic Raw Honey, 22-Ounce

 

Simply Organic Cayenne Pepper Certified Organic Containers – 2.89 Oz

 

Bragg Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar, 16 Ounce – 1 Pack

 

Santa Cruz Organic Original Lemonade, 1 Quart

**Due to the alcohol in this recipe I do not recommend using with children, especially under the age of 18.  

Recipe Swap

Pizza has long been one of my favorite foods.  I look forward to eating it at least once a week.  When I was younger, I could eat pizza five days a week for lunch and not blink an eye.  I probably could still eat it five days a week, but I’d have to blink both eyes now.

Growing up in Middle Village, everyone ate pizza at Carlo’s Pizzeria.  When we go home, we all flock back to Carlo’s for a slice of the best pizza in New York.  My family really couldn’t afford to order pizza often, but when we did what a delicious treat.  I’m guessing my love affair with pizza can be traced back to those carefree days growing up in the best small town ever.

Flash forward many years and I still love pizza.  I wouldn’t say I ever found a pizzeria that I love as much as my childhood one, but Staten Island has some darn good pizza.  The thing is as I’ve continued on this journey, I’ve worried about the quality of the ingredients being used in these commercial pizza pies.  We all know there are corners to be cut and money to be saved when running a business.  I don’t want my health to be connected to anyones bottom line.  I want to ensure that my pizza is made with the healthiest, freshest organic ingredients out there.  The only way I know to do this is to make it myself.

I’ve been making homemade pizza for years now and I must say once you make the switch you may never go back to store bought.  It’s really not a complicated process and knowing each ingredient used puts my mind at ease.  It’s been a journey of trial and error to perfect the recipe.  When I first started, I was buying the dough already made, but that sort of defeats the purpose of making homemade.  And, please don’t use jar sauce on it either.  If you are committing to your health and taking the time to make the pizza at home, please be selective about your ingredients, as well as toppings.

Here are a few options for the pizza crust, some healthier than others.  If you are not gluten free, consider using my favorite crust.

Ingredients 

  • 1 teaspoon yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons oil

Directions

  1. Add all ingredients in order listed to your bread machine.
  2. Use Pizza Dough setting
  3. When finished let dough rest for at least 5 minutes before using
  4. Place on lightly greased pizza pan
  5. Add sauce, cheese, etc.
  6. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes (check readiness before removing from oven)

Here’s the directions if you do not have a bread machine, but I highly recommend getting one.  You can also buy a dough attachment for your Kitchen Aid mixer.  I have this as well, but prefer the bread machine as it takes the dough through the whole cycle including rising without me standing there.  Here are the directions if you do not have either of those options,

Directions

  1. Dissolve yeast and sugar in water.
  2. Beat in ½ flour.
  3. Add salt, oil and rest of flour (add more if needed to make handle-able dough).
  4. Rise in lightly oiled bowl.
  5. Place on lightly greased pan.
  6. Add sauce, cheese, etc.
  7. Bake at 400 20 minutes.

Here are two options for dough making at home:

Hamilton Beach Programmable Bread Machine, 2-Pound Bread Maker with Gluten-Free Setting (29882)

Mine is an older version, but I like that this one has a gluten free setting. I may have to upgrade!

KitchenAid Burnished Aluminum C-Dough Hook

Gluten Free Pizza Dough

I experimented with gluten free versions, but since I am not gluten intolerant and only eat pizza once a week I don’t often make it.  Here’s the recipe I found the easiest to make and closest in taste to traditional pizza dough.  Further, it’s one of the only ones that didn’t have an ingredient list a mile long and is pretty darn good.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white rice flour
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 cup tapioca flour
  • 3/4 tsp xanthan gum)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 Tbsp sugar, divided
  • 1 Tbsp yeast
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water, divided
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, combine yeast and 3/4 cup warm water. Too hot and it will kill the yeast! Let set for 5 minutes to activate.
  2. Sprinkle in 1 Tbsp of the sugar a few minutes in.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour blend, salt, baking powder and remaining 2 Tbsp sugar. Whisk until well combined.
  4. Make a well in the dry mixture and add the yeast mixture. Add the olive oil and additional 1/2 cup warm water before stirring. Then stir it all together until well combined, using a wooden spoon.
  5. Lightly coat a baking sheet or pizza stone with non-stick spray and plop your dough down. Using your hands and a little brown rice flour if it gets too sticky, work from the middle and push to spread/flatten the dough out to the edge. You want it to be pretty thin – less than 1/4 inch.
  6. Put the pizza in the oven to pre-bake for roughly 25-30 minutes, or until it begins to look dry. Cracks may appear, but that’s normal and totally OK.
  7. Remove from oven and spread generously with your favorite pizza sauce, cheese and desired toppings. Pop back in oven for another 20-25 minutes, or until the crust edge looks golden brown and the toppings are warm and bubbly.
  8. Cut immediately and serve.

Recipe Credit: Minimalist Baker.com

If I update my bread machine, perhaps I can revisit this recipe and use the machine for the dough.

Cauliflower Crust

I’m including the recipe here, but I’ve only tried it once.  It was just OK for me, but my friends loved it.  I am a traditional pizza girl at heart and if I’m eating it, I want the real deal.

INGREDIENTS

2 pounds cauliflower florets, riced
1 egg, beaten
⅓ cup cheese for topping
1 teaspoon dried oregano
pinch of salt

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat your oven to 400F.
  2. To make the cauliflower rice, pulse batches of raw cauliflower florets in a food processor, until a rice-like texture is achieved.
  3. Fill a large pot with about an inch of water, and bring it to a boil. Add the “rice” and cover; let it cook for about 4-5 minutes. Drain into a fine-mesh strainer.
  4. THIS IS THE SECRET: Once you’ve strained the rice, transfer it to a clean, thin dishtowel. Wrap up the steamed rice in the dishtowel, twist it up, then SQUEEZE all the excess moisture out! It’s amazing how much extra liquid will be released, which will leave you with a nice and dry pizza crust.
  5. In a large bowl, mix up your strained rice, beaten egg, goat cheese, and spices. (Don’t be afraid to use your hands! You want it very well mixed.) It won’t be like any pizza dough you’ve ever worked with, but don’t worry– it’ll hold together!
  6. Press the dough out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. (It’s important that it’s lined with parchment paper, or it will stick.) Keep the dough about ⅓” thick, and make the edges a little higher for a “crust” effect, if you like.
  7. Bake for 35-40 minutes at 400F. The crust should be firm, and golden brown when finished.
  8. Now’s the time to add all your favorites– sauce, cheese, and any other toppings you like.
  9. Return the pizza to the 400F oven, and bake an additional 5-10 minutes, just until the cheese is hot and bubbly.
    Slice and serve immediately!

Author: Detoxinista.com
A grain-free alternative to traditional pizza crust, that you can pick up with your hands!

This recipe and other easy recipes can be found in this book –

Everyday Detox: 100 Easy Recipes to Remove Toxins, Promote Gut Health, and Lose Weight Naturally

If you have a favorite homemade pizza recipe, please share it below.  I’d absolutely love to try it!