Saturday, November 11, 2006

Pantry Dinner

Today was a nice lazy Saturday. We got up late, the kids asked for donuts, and we spent the morning doing whatever. I manged to finish a book, Andy read up on his new car, and the kids just had fun playing together. Later on we had to run into town for some new car accessories for Andy and we had to stop at Sam's Club to pick up a few things. When we walked in the door, I asked Andy "what do you want for dinner." His response "I dunno, I hadn't thought of it yet." I told him to start thinking while we picked up what we needed. It wasn't until we were in the parking lot pulling away that I realized we hadn't picked anything up for dinner. We lamely discussed it, neither of us interested in dinner plans- like I said, it was a lazy day.

As the dinner hour crept closer and closer, I realized I had to do something, or it would be broasted chicken from the grocery store- and they really don't have great broasted chicken. I headed to the freezer and pulled out a pork loin roast and then headed to the computer. A quick search of Cooking Light and Recipezaar led me to a recipe for Pork Medallions with Cranberries and Apples. Having everything on hand, including some brown rice to serve it over, and some pureed pumpkin for the side dish, I got to work, and it came together in no time.

The result? It was quite good actually! I swear I've made a variation of this before from Cooking Light, but a search of their website doesn't bring anything up. The only thing was the cranberries. They just didn't seem to quite meld with the pork and apples. Andy suggested leaving them out next time, but I'm actually thinking that Dried Cranberries would shine in this recipe. I had a hard time getting a good picture, but I think you kind of get the idea. Had the pork been thawed already, this could have easily been a 30- minute or less meal. Well, except for the brown rice anyway. Zander made quick work of his pork, and like anything else meat-based, not so much for Abigail. But overall it was family friendly and a definite repeat.


Anonymous said...

Your dinner looks great -- wish I could just whip that up at the last moment. A bit off topic, but how do you defrost it the pork loin in such a short time. I've only defrosted stuff in the refrig a day or two before. Do you microwave it -- I tried it once but I think I over did it.

Thanks - love your blog

Erika said...

Welcome anonymous! I did defrost it in the microwave, but only for about 10 minutes (instead of the recommended 30). It was still partially frozen when I cut it into slices, so that actually made it easier to slice it. Then I just let the slices sit to the side while I prepped everything else, and they were mostly thawed by the time I tossed them in the pan. I did give the whole dish some extra time to bubble away to make sure it was cooked through.

I have found that when defrosting in the microwave, I need to use less time than the micro suggests, and meat products need frequent turning to keep the edges from cooking a bit. I do try to think ahead and pull something out in the morning or the day before, but sometimes I rely on the microwave. The key is to pay close attention when microwaving-

Pam Sp said...

This recipe sounds great and I plan to try it this week. I love your blog....your recipes are all so good and your writing is inviting and comfortable. I like to check in at least once a week to see what's up. Thanks!

Erika said...

Welcome pam sp! Thank you for the nice comments! I would still blog if no one read it, but it means a lot when people leave me encouraging feedback.

I hope you'll enjoy the pork recipe- and if you're not familiar with it, check out Recipezaar where I found the recipe- it's chock full of recipes and advice from other home cooks.