Pork and Peaches

Hello lambs! It’s a Christmas miracle as I cooked again this week! I’ve been thumbing through the new Cooking Light with all of the summer harvest bounty gracing the pages – this truly is one of my favorite food times of the year. The summer fruits section really piqued my interest and then when I saw this Brined Pork Tenderloin with Plum and Jicama Relish I had to give it a whirl. I mean it’s pork tenderloin and fruit, how can I go wrong?

After work I drove to Central Market and found everything on my list except for plums, which I was told I was about a week off but there were some lovely peaches I could pick-up if I was in a pinch. I happen to love peaches and was actually a little more excited about the dish than I would be with plums. For the win!

I got home and immediately placed the pork in the salty brine. As the pork did its thing I assembled the relish which was super easy and quite delicious at first taste. While I made the potato salad, which I’m not going to mention here because it was a bit of a disappointment, David walked up to the grill and cooked the pork. Who’s David? Well, the new (amazing, gentle and total foodie) guy in my life that I hope you can get to know better as my little blog continues on. :) I happily digress. So David cooked the pork on the grill and had to do a bit longer than originally called for, about 4-5 minutes, and then we let it rest.

We plated the pork with the relish on top and then the disappointing potato salad. Obviously the salad was “meh” but the pork was fantastic. The sweet and spicy relish complemented the salty, juicy pork perfectly. I have leftovers sitting in the fridge right now calling my name and can’t wait to dig in. This is an easy and delicious summer night meal and next time I will try it with plums darnit. Enjoy!

Mussels (or Clams) Steamed in Beer with Crème Fraîche, Herbs, and Parmesan Croutons

I think I just saw a pig fly by my window because yes gentle lambs I cooked last night and the recipe was quite delicious, yay! As I’ve mentioned my cooking life has been on a bit of a hiatus (for very fantastic reasons so no complaints here) as of late and thus so has my gentle little blog that I love so much.

I had the opportunity to cook last night and decided to ease myself back into it with something simple yet absolutely delicious sounding and what’s not delicious sounding about mussels, herbs, beer, parmesan and crème fraîche? Exactly, nothing! I chose this Belgian-inspired Mussels Steamed in Beer with Crème Fraîche, Herbs, and Parmesan Croutons recipe from the May 2010 Bon Appetit and chose to make a Belgian Endive, Walnut and Goat Cheese Salad with Grapefruit Vinaigrette as a complementary Belgian-ish side dish.

For a mussels dish, which usually takes me about 10 – 15 minutes max to prep and cook, this one took a wee bit longer but I had time so I didn’t mind. One thing I did mind was the fact that some dude took the last of ALL of the mussels right before I got the seafood counter at Central Market. Mind you, this is the second time this has happened to me at the CM so I sighed and then went with clams. They still turned out to be fantastic with the rest of the ingredients and it was my first time to cook with clams…cooking experience bonus!
What I absolutely loved about this dish was the broth…yum. I loved the fresh herbs of tarragon, thyme, parsley, chives and chervil and the combination of the white Belgian beer with the crème fraîche, or in this case I used sour cream, with the two mustards gave it a nice bite and rounded out the broth nicely. Last but not least the parmesan croutons were the perfect addition. Crispy, salty, cheesy and if you let them sit in the creamy, herby, beery broth you will be a happy little clam yourself.
Give this one a try as soon as you can and enjoy a nice Belgian beer along with it. A votre sante!