Midnight Tortas

If someone can tell me what might be a bit amiss with this recipe from Food & Wine magazine then I will call you my main lamb for life. Comment away lambs and I will update you on what I did with this decadant little beaut shortly after…there will be pork belly, oh yes, there will be pork belly.

Food & Wine magazine's Best New Chefs 2010

Thai Me Over

As a part of the ongoing no-cook meal week I chose Cooking Light’s Thai Beef Rolls and Chef Jamie Oliver’s Thai Mango Salad for a little Tuesday Thai night.

The Thai Beef Rolls were extremely simple to put together and the sauce is what made this dish. First of all, I love fish sauce. Similar to the saltiness that anchovies provide, fish sauce lends a perfect bite and balance to the sugar, lime juice, sesame oil, garlic and ginger. Plus we heart roast beef so this was a winner for sure.

On to the Thai Mango Salad. Um, this rocked. We didn’t make the prawns since we had the roast beef in the rolls but I can see how they would be an awesome addition. This salad was so fresh, colorful and delicious I made enough for leftovers the next day, but once I started picking the unripe mango out of the rest of the bowl we heaped the rest onto our plates and nom, nom, nomed. Plus you can’t feel too guilty about eating an extra helping of bell peppers, mango and cucumbers can you? I didn’t have fresh coriander (or cilantro, thank you Nicole!) but used ground instead and it worked perfectly.

This meal was fast, full of fresh Thai-inspired flavors and that salad is going to be a go-to staple from now. Thanks Chef Oliver, you are such a poodle!

Recipe Redo: Strawberry-Avocado Salsa

Yep, I made this recipe again last night but this I time served the salsa on top of boneless pork chops that were drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with ancho chile powder, salt and a dash of white pepper. We roasted the chops in the new Wolf convection oven and I’m so impressed with it we might just run off together. Seriously, the oven cooked our pork chops to perfection and with the Strawberry-Avocado Salsa on top of the chops with a simple mix of spinach and arugula salad? YUM. And, I did learn my lesson from the first trial run and made more salsa this time around. You can guess what happened to all of it I’m sure. If you haven’t made this yet I’m insisting you do!

No-Cook Meal Week!

I’m not going to lie, it is HOT here in Austin. Yeah, I know it’s August in Texas so I should not be surprised, but it has registered more than 100 degrees since last week and it doesn’t look like it is letting up anytime soon. Is this why I chose a week of no-cook meals? I must admit the timing is perfect because it is so stinking hot outside, but actually, we are remodeling the kitchen and are in limbo until we get it done. Well you know me lambs, nothing was going to stop me from cooking, er, preparing a healthy meal for dinner so I set out to find recipes to suit our needs. Tah dah! Of course Cooking Light came through with a library of options. This week I’ve chosen:

Now, we do have a new Wolf brand microwave convection oven that makes me look like a kid at an aquarium; I literally stand there and go “ooooooooooohh, ahhhhhhhhhh” while it’s on. Last night for the refried beans (yes in a can!) I put the bacon in the oven and turned it on its “bacon” setting. You know this oven and I are going to be fast friends if it has a bacon setting. Minutes later the bacon came out perfect. Love, love it. I then dropped the bacon in the refried beans, heated up and served with the awesome Chicken and Guacamole Tostadas. The guacamole on this is so flavorful and delicious it truly made the smokey chicken sing with the cilantro, onions and tomatoes. David added some crumbled cotija cheese on top which was a fantastic, no-cook addition. For the cheese win!

I’ll let you know how the rest of our almost no-cook week goes. I have to say I’m kind of digging having a meal on the table in no-time flat with very limited dishes after the fact!