Pork Tenderloin with Apples

Fall has really snuck up on me. I feel like I’ve missed out on a lot of valuable fall kitchen days because I have been so busy. I finally have a few days off and bought huge amounts of beautiful fall produce. I might have gone a little overboard considering I am going out of town again next weekend! But these vegetables were just calling my name.

IMG_0763

Cinnamon apples have been one of my favorite things since childhood. Kids are totally cheating when they get cinnamon apples as a side with dinner… Because it’s definitely dessert. The recipe below is kind of a healthy version of cinnamon apples. My husband and I have been on a diet kick lately so I have been doing a lot less baking and more research with simple healthy meals. This pork tenderloin with the apples comes in at just under 300 calories per serving.

IMG_0727

There is something classic about this combination of fall spices, apples, and pork tenderloin. This recipe is incredibly simple and combines all of my favorite fall flavors. You should serve this with a merlot. Or even better, finish off this meal with Chaucers Mead. It is a wine made from honey and it is a bit sweet. Mead was definitely made for chilly fall evenings.

IMG_0691

IMG_0697

IMG_0702
2 lb pork tenderloin
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp butter
2 cups sliced gala apples
1/4 cup apple cider

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine salt, coriander, black pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper in a small bowl. Rub the pork tenderloin with this. Place the pork tenderloin in a small roasting pan. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, rotating halfway through.

During the last half of baking, prepare the apples. Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium – high. Add the apple slices and saute for 4 minutes. Add the apple cider and cook for 2-3 minutes more until the apples are crisp tender.

Slice the pork tenderloin into 1/2 inch slices and serve with the apples over mashed potatoes or mashed sweet potatoes.

This is a Bubbly Kitchen original recipe.

Southern Style Green Beans

The blog has been totally halted lately due to the unfortunate downtime for my iPhone’s camera. This is a sad tale of the day I came home from the gym and discovered that my iPhone camera was pitch black and broken. I thought I was sentenced to only taking selfies until the new iPhone makes is debut. But on a beautiful day of beer tasting in Chapel Hill, my camera came back to life. Maybe it was the great company and amazing day or maybe the beer spilled on it, but it is back in action.

IMG_6222-4

In other news… Green beans are probably my favorite vegetable and they are really getting going in my patio garden. Honestly, they are perfect just boiled and sprinkled with salt and pepper. This recipe is a combination of a few different southern green bean recipes out there. I love the idea of adding pecans to these. Nothing seems more southern than bacon and pecans. It is also sort of a take on the way I remember my dad making green beans, either with almonds or with bacon. I will say that this is very similar to the way I like to make kale, brussels sprouts, and other sorts of veggies… bacon + onions + garlic + red pepper flakes. You really can’t go wrong with this. This is my very favorite green bean recipe. My second favorite is to make green beans with chicken piccata and make extra sauce for the veggies. And although green beans are wonderful and fresh in the summer, this dish actually gets me super excited for fall and thanksgiving food.

IMG_6223-1

IMG_6224-1   IMG_6235-1

Southern Style Green Beans

1 lb fresh green beans
6 strips bacon, sliced into quarter inch strips
1 small yellow onion, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans.

Prepare a large pot with salted water and bring to a boil. Cook the green beans in the boiling water  for 5 minutes. While they are cooking prepare a large bowl with icewater. Drain the green beans and immediately plunge them into the ice water.

In a large frying pan, cook the bacon over medium until the grease is rendered (not too crispy). Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a bowl lined with paper towels. Keep 2 tbsp bacon grease in the pan. Add the onion and saute for 5 minutes, till clear and soft. Cook the garlic and red pepper flakes for one minute. Toss in the green beans and the pecans. Cook until heated through. Toss in the bacon. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.

This is a Bubbly Kitchen original recipe.

Balsamic Stuffed Mushrooms

My husband rarely picks things out at the store. Mostly he just walks around pushing the cart and looking at sports news on his phone. But one day at the store, he reached out for portobellos and said “Let’s get these.” I do not care for mushrooms, but for him I will cook whatever he wants. Especially when he chose something at the grocery store for once in 2 years. I actually ate one of these mushrooms, and it was pretty good. But he should really be the one who writes this post because he absolutely loved them. This recipe was inspired by my current obsession for all things balsamic vinaigrette. Which actually stems from all the amazing fresh strawberries that I am putting on salads lately. The blog has really been all over the place this summer. Mostly because at home I have just been grilling simple things and the rest of the time I am eating the most amazing salads ever (with the leftovers from the grill).

 

20140717-195018.jpg

20140717-195025.jpg

20140717-195031.jpg

You can buy pretty great balsamic vinaigrette from the refrigerated dressing section at the store. But if you have an extra few minutes, you should definitely make your own. Below is the vinaigrette recipe I have been make. Soon I will post a perfected creamy balsamic vinaigrette that will make you want to eat a salad immediately. Whether you like mushrooms or not, this recipe will impress all your friends at your next barbecue. In case you don’t know anything about mushrooms, here is an article about how to select and prepare portobellos.

20140717-195040.jpg

20140717-195048.jpg

Balsamic Vinaigrette

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tsp dark brown sugar
1 tbsp chopped garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup olive oil

Place all the ingredients in a screw top mason jar (or whatever container you have on hand) and shake until combined.

Balsamic Stuffed Mushrooms

6 large-ish portobellos
1/2 cup panko
1/2 cup grated mozzarella
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1 tsp italian seasoning blend
1 tsp chopped garlic cloves
1/4 cup butter, melted

Use a spoon to scrape out the gills of the mushrooms (they can be eaten but will turn everything a murky brown color). Paint the mushrooms inside and out with vinaigrette. Arrange hollow side up and let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Heat a gas grill to medium heat or prepare a medium heat fire in your charcoal grill. Mix together the panko, mozzarella, parmesan, italian seasoning, chopped garlic cloves. Pour melted butter over the dry mixture and toss together. Stuff the mushrooms with the panko mixture.

Place mushrooms with the stuffing side up onto the grill. Cook until the cheese is bubbly and melted, about 7 minutes. Shift them around occasionally so that they cook evenly.

French Onion Tart

Vidalia onions made their appearance in Fresh Market a couple weeks ago and I was so excited! I buy them two bags at a time. When I am not making tarts, french onion soup, caramelized onions pizza, we are grilling these onions. I cut them whole into fairly thin slices, pop out the middle rings of the onions, and shove butter in there. Then I just wrap them in foil and grill the little foil onion bundles. You really cannot overcook these onions, just keep them at the edge of the grill while you cook all the rest of your dinner. Prepare to have a spiritual experience when you taste these extremely simple but insanely delicious grilled onions. It seems wrong that the grilled onion recipe is actually just a bonus recipe because I make them at least once a week in the summer. Savory tarts have been on my to do list forever! I love the beautiful presentation of a tart and the possibilities are endless! I am anxiously awaiting for my beefsteak and cherry tomatoes to grow up for the tomato tart I have planned. This french onion tart has a sort of custard base. It is super simple and a total crowd pleaser. The flavors are very rich and I think it may be even better served in the fall. But since vidalia onions are in season right now, I could not resist working on this recipe.

20140710-103358.jpg

 

20140710-103251.jpg20140710-103327.jpg

20140710-103304.jpg

I actually cooked some bacon thinking I would put that in this tart, but I left it out! I know, super uncharacteristic of me. Honestly, the flavor here is so fabulous, it does not need to be tainted by bacon. (Blasphemy!) I did chop up the bacon and make a BLT salad though. If you have not made tart or pie crust before, give it a shot! This recipe is so easy. You can make this dough ahead of time and store it in the freezer. Just let it thaw in the fridge before attempting to roll it out. If the idea of making the dough is just too much, the pie dough in the freezer section these days is pretty good. If you do not have a tart pan, you can use a 9 inch pie pan or even a disposable foil pan. But you should probably buy this Wilton Nonstick Tart Pan because, it is one kitchen accessory that will not be collecting dust. So please, please, please let nothing stop you and go get some Vidalia onions. You should definitely serve this tart for brunch or lunch with a salad and a glass of Josh Cellars Sauvignon Blanc. This wine will cut through the rich flavors of this tart. It has bright citrus flavor with summery floral notes.

20140710-103258.jpg

20140710-103317.jpg

20140710-103310.jpg

20140710-103341.jpg

20140710-103246.jpg

French Onion Tart

Pâte brisée 
250 grams all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp kosher salt
4 oz cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
3 tbsp ice water

Filling
1 1/2lb yellow onions (~4), halved and sliced thin
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Pinch of sugar
1 cup beaf broth
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated gruyere, comte, or swiss cheese (~2 oz)
1 large egg
1/2 cup heavy cream
Make the crust
In the large bowl of a food processor, mix together the flour and salt. Add the butter cubes and pulse in short bursts until the flour/butter resembles bread crumbs. Sprinkle the ice water over the mixture and pulse just a few more times. It will appear very clumpy. Take the dough out and knead it gently into a ball.

Lightly butter a 9 inch tart pan. Roll the dough out between two pieces of parchment until it is 11 inches in diameter. Peel the top layer off and flip the dough into the prepared tart pan (uncovered side down). Drape the dough into the edges of the pain, do not press or stretch. Trim the edges, leaving enough to fold over the hanging edge, creating a double thick tart edge (prevents shrinkage or breakage).

Press foil against the surface of the shell and freeze for 1 hour.

Make the filling
In a large skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter and olive oil. Add the onions and toss to coat. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan with a lid. Cook for 15 minutes and then remove the lid. Sprinkle with salt and sugar. Saute without the lid for 30 minutes until the onions are fully caramelized. They should be a deep golden color.

Pour in the beef stock and turn the heat up to medium-high. Simmer until the broth is nearly completely evaporated, 10-15 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Let the onions cool for 20-30 minutes.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg and cream. Stir the lukewarm onions into the egg/cream. Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Assembly
Fill the prepared and frozen tart shell with onion-egg mixture. The filling will be about a quarter inch from the top. If you used a pie dish or a larger size tart pan and the filling level looks low, beat another egg with a little cream and add this in. Sprinkle the cheese over the custard and bake for 25-30 minutes. The tart is done when you pierce it with a sharp knife and no wet egg mixture is released.

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen.

Mexican Quinoa

My family seems to be getting into gluten free and vegan recipes, and so just for them I have been working on this Mexican Quinoa. It is gluten free and vegan. I also just planted jalapenos and cannot wait to make this with my own patio grown jalapenos! This was my first adventure into the trendy grains people keep talking about. Quinoa is actually a seed though, but its still pretty popular right now. I was very happy with the texture and flavors of this dish. This is perfect for dinner and the summer and makes delicious leftovers. You can make a perfect lunch bowl with this and a mixed greens salad. This quinoa is great warm or cold. You can add salsa (my preference – salsa verde) to the finished product, kind of like a salad dressing. My absolute favorite way to have this salad is actually the next day. Step 1, make your Mexican quinoa in advance. Step 2, pack the quinoa in a cooler with chips and salsa, limes, and Coronas. Step 3, squeeze a lime over your quinoa and into your Corona. Step 4, have a fabulous picnic by the beach or the pool.

20140415-163507.jpg

Mexican Quinoa

1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup diced sweet onion
3 jalapenos, seeded and diced
1 medium tomato, diced (or 1 can diced tomatoes drained)
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup frozen or fresh corn
1 cup quinoa
2 cups vegetable stock or water
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 tsp salt
Sour cream, avocado, salsa, shredded cheese for serving.

In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes. Add jalapeno and garlic, saute for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add in the tomato, garlic, and corn, cook for another 2-3 minutes. Mix in the quinoa, stock, black beans, and salt.

Bring this to a boil and reduce the heat to low. Cook, covered, for 20-25 minutes. It is done when all the liquid is absorbed. Fluff the quinoa and serve.

Recipe adapted from Peanut Butter Runner.