R.I.P. Beloved Saucepan

A few days ago we lost our favorite saucepan. We were cooking up some basmati rice for a chicken tikka masala dish and we don’t know what happened, but we went to lift it off the stovetop, the lid wobbled some and then the saucepan just broke pretty much in half ! Rice and glass were scattered over the stovetop and there was just no saving any of it. We’d had that saucepan for a little over 28 years ! It was the perfect size for cooking rice, sauces, etc. If you have a cherished piece of kitchen equipment that you’ve had for quite a while, you know how hard it is to even think about losing it. There’s no guarantee that you’ll ever find something just as good to take its place. With all that being said, the looks on our face must’ve been hilarious to see.It felt like some kind of Carrie-crap, just breaking in half as it was being held. It truly was a WTF moment !

Take care everybody !

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Chipotle-Cilantro Slaw

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. sour cream
  • 1 tsp. lime zest
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 2 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp. salt (we used Kosher salt)
  • ½ tsp. pepper (we used freshly ground black pepper)
  • 2 canned chipotle chile peppers in adobe sauce, finely chopped (since the peppers were so small we used 4 of them)
  • 1 (16 oz.) pkg. shredded coleslaw mix
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • ½ cup minced fresh cilantro

Directions

  1. Take a large mixing bowl out and mix the first 9 ingredients together in it until combined. Add in the remaining ingredients, stirring until all components are coated in the dressing. Serve the slaw right away or cover and let chill for at least 1 hour.

This is one of our favorite coleslaw recipes ! It’s got an awesome blend of heat and acidity and it’s just a great, fresh tasting dish. There’s also plenty of crunch from the coleslaw mix. You can eat this right away but it’s better in our opinion when it’s chilled. We hope you’ll try this dish and love it as much as we did.

Recipe source unknown.

Take care everybody !

Slow-Cooker Smoky Chipotle Beef Tacos

Ingredients

  • 2 onions, chopped (we finely chopped our yellow onions)
  • 1/3 cup chili powder
  • 3 Tbsp. minced canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeño chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced (we left the seeds in)
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 (15-oz.) can tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp. packed light brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. liquid smoke (we used mesquite)
  • 1 (3-lb.) boneless beef chuck-eye roast, trimmed and halved
  • Salt and pepper (we used Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper)
  • 12-18 (6-inch) corn tortillas, warmed
  • Toppings (optional): sour cream, chopped onion, chopped cilantro, thinly sliced radishes and/or lime wedges (we tried it with radish slices, radish slices and pico de gallo, and tried a few tacos that only had avocado slices as a topping)

Directions

  1. Take a large microwavable container and add the onions, chili powder, chipotle, oil, garlic, jalapeño, tomato paste and cumin to it (the directions don’t say to but we mixed everything together once it was all in the container). Microwave for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally or until the onions have softened*. Once the onions have softened, place the mixture into the bottom of a 5 ½- to 7-quart slow cooker. Season the beef with salt and pepper (we did so on both sides) and put it in the slow cooker afterwards.
  2. Put the lid on the slow cooker and let it cook until the beef is tender, either 9 to 10 hours on LOW or 6 to 7 hours on high (we cooked ours on low heat).
  3. Once the beef is tender, take it out of the slow cooker and put it in a large container, letting it cool a little. Using two forks, shred the beef into bite-size pieces, tossing out any excess fat pieces (we did try a piece of fat before throwing the rest away and it was so tender, it melted like butter in  your mouth). Skim any excess fat from the surface of the sauce left in the slow cooker (we didn’t do that).
  4. Stir 1 cup of the sauce in with the beef, adding in more if the beef starts to look dried out (honestly we just added our shredded beef back into the slow cooker with all of the sauce, stirring to combine). Season with salt and pepper if you think it needs it (we didn’t think it needed any more salt and pepper). Serve with the warmed tortillas and leftover sauce (and the optional toppings if you’re using any of them).

*After 7 minutes in the microwave, our onions were still crunchy but we decided to move on.

The chili powder flavor really comes through in this dish. The beef and onions were so tender by the end of the cook time. You really can’t go wrong with any of the toppings. The various toppings we tried all worked harmoniously together flavor-wise with the beef and most of the toppings added some nice contrasting textures to the dish.

We got this recipe from America’s Test Kitchen.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote America’s Test Kitchen.

Take care everybody !

Mexican Rice

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (we used a yellow onion)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups long-grain rice (we used Uncle Ben’s Original Long Grain Rice)
  • 1 (10-oz.) can Original Rotel Diced Tomatoes & Green Chilies
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 2 to 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth (we used 2 cups)
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish (we didn’t use it)

Directions

  1. Pour the oil into a large skillet and set the heat to medium-high. Once the oil’s hot, toss the the onion and garlic in and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring continuously. Turn the heat down to low and add the rice to the skillet. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly so that the rice doesn’t burn. Add in the Rotel, cumin, diced tomatoes, cayenne, and salt, stirring to combine. Add 2 cups of broth in, stirring to combine and wait for the dish to come to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and put a lid on the skillet. Let the rice simmer for 10 to 15 minutes (we went with 15 minutes) or until the rice is fully cooked. If the rice looks sticky, pour some or all of the remaining 1 cup of broth in. Right before serving, add the cilantro to the dish if you’re going to use it.

This was actually the first rice recipe we ever tried, before this we had just been using microwavable rice. Once we made this though, we could never go back to the pre-packaged Mexican rice. There’s a pleasant level of heat to it and there’s an al dente quality to the rice. There’s spiciness, the tomatoes provide a nice pop of juiciness when you have some in your bite as well as a contrasting texture to the rice. The heat will make your lips tingle but it doesn’t overpower the flavor from the spices. A little softness from the onion also contrasts nicely against the other textures.

Recipe source unknown.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote Uncle Ben’s or Rotel.

Take care everybody !

Fiery Asian Slaw

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil (we used extra-virgin olive oil)
  • 2 tsp. Sriracha (hot chile sauce)
  • 1 tsp. bottled ground fresh ginger (we used ground ginger)
  • ½ tsp. honey
  • ½ tsp. salt (we used Kosher salt)
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 (16-ounce) package cabbage-and-carrot coleslaw (we used Fresh Express 3 Color Deli Cole Slaw)
  • 1 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds (we forgot to use them)

Directions

  1. Take a large mixing bowl out and whisk together the following ingredients in it: rice vinegar, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, Sriracha, ground fresh ginger and honey. Add in the Kosher salt, cilantro and coleslaw, tossing well to ensure everything’s coated in the vinegar dressing. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds and serve.

The title’s a little misleading, it wasn’t “fiery” but it was delicious ! There wasn’t one particular flavor that made us enjoy this, it was just an overall nice blend of flavors that made us want to keep coming back for more !

Recipe source unknown.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote Fresh Express.

Take care everybody !

Southern Pulled-Pork Sandwiches

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup packed light-brown sugar
  • ½ to 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (we used 1 tsp.)
  • 1 Tbsp. coarse salt (we used Kosher salt)
  • 1 tsp. ground pepper (we used freshly ground black pepper)
  • 3 pounds boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), cut into 4 equal pieces (we used a boneless pork shoulder picnic roast)
  • 1 ½ cups cider vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 8 soft sandwich rolls, split (we used Cobblestone White Sub)
  • Store-bought barbecue sauce for serving (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees with racks in the lower and upper portions (we put our racks on the highest and lowest positions). In a small mixing bowl, mix the sugar, cayenne, salt and pepper together until thoroughly combined.
  2. Take a 5-quart Dutch oven or large heavy-bottomed pot out (we went with the Dutch oven) and place the pork in it. Rub the spice mixture all over the pork.
  3. In a bowl with at least a 4-cup capacity, mix the vinegar, water, and garlic together, pouring it over the pork afterwards. Put a lid on the Dutch oven and stick it in the oven on the lower rack. Cook the pork for 2 to 2 ½ hours or until it’s really tender and is easy to pull apart with a fork (we cooked our for roughly 2 hours and 15 minutes).
  4. Take the pork out of the Dutch oven, making sure not to throw away the juice that’s left in the Dutch oven. Using 2 forks, shred the meat and place it in a large container afterwards. Add enough juice from the Dutch oven to moisten the pork, tossing the pork so it all gets moistened (we didn’t need all the juice but we poured it all in anyways because it would’ve been a sin to let any of it go to waste). Add the shredded pork to the rolls, topping with barbecue sauce if you’d like (we didn’t use any barbecue sauce).

Oh my god, this was so f*$@ing delicious ! Fights could break out over someone getting more than their share. The inner parts of the meat are tasty but the outer crust portion is even more flavorful. You got the tang from the vinegar and got heat from the peppers. We also love this recipe because it was so easy to make ! We tried some barbecue sauce with the pulled pork but it didn’t taste nearly as good together as the pulled pork on its own. It’s best to let the pork and juices shine brightly all on their own. The recipe serves 8 but if you love it as much as we do, you can hide half of it for yourself and just lie and tell your family it only serves 4 ! The recipe mentions sandwich rolls but use whatever you want to.

Recipe source unknown.

We weren’t paid in any form to mention Cobblestone.

Take care everybody !