Dinner, Pork

Pork Braciole

Well, while we have been sheltering in place during this Covid 19/Corona Virus outbreak, hubby has been cooking up a storm. I am not complaining, I like to cook too and have been trying some new items and satisfying the request from the kids for some old favorites- (Pancetta wrapped pork tenderloin with carmelized lemons for you know who). Eric likes to find new recipes and enjoys sharing them with us. It gives him something to do when the weather does not cooperate to work outside around the yard.

So, he found this recipe on Food Network one Saturday and Bam, it was on the table the next night. Very flavorful and easy to make. We used a Rao marinana souce to take it over the top.


1/2 cup breadcrumbs

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 

2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley 

1 teaspoon lemon zest 

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt 

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 

1/4 cup olive oil

Two 1 1/2-pound pork tenderloins, butterflied and lightly pounded 

6 slices provolone cheese 

1/2 cup dry white wine 

One 25-ounce jar marinara sauce


 In a small bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, Parmesan, parsley, lemon zest, 1/2 teaspoon salt, red pepper flakes and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Lay the tenderloins open and flat on a board in front of you. Season each loin evenly all over with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Lay 3 slices of provolone on each loin. Divide the breadcrumb mixture over the provolone. Roll the loins back up into their original shape and tie in 4 spots with kitchen twine.

Heat a medium straight-sided skillet over medium-high heat. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil to the skillet. Sear the pork tenderloins until evenly golden brown all the way around, about 3 minutes per side. Remove to a plate to rest. Deglaze the skillet with the white wine and add the marinara sauce. Nestle the pork back in the sauce. Cover the skillet and simmer until the pork is just cooked through and registers 145 degrees F on an instead-read thermometer, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to rest uncovered for 10 minutes before slicing and serving with the sauce.

Chicken, Dinner

Roasted Lemon Chicken Thighs and Potatoes

I have subscribed to many cooking magazines over the years. I had a long time subscription to Cooking Light. I tried Food and Wine, Southern Living, Food Network Magazine, Paula Deen and Bon Appetit. Each one I found a recipe that has been one that we have come back to again and again. My favorite and the only one I currently subscribe to is Fine Cooking. This magazine was where we found our son’s favorite meal of all time – Prosciutto Wrapped Pork Tenderloin with Lemon and Sage. https://diningwithadinergirl.com/2012/05/09/picky-eaters-favorite-dinner/ . In fact I made it last night because he came home for the weekend from school. The page in the magazine is stained many times over from having near by when I make it. I now refer to my blog post when I make it even though I know most of the steps by heart.

In the last issue there was a Roasted Chicken Dish that looked so good. I thought that we could make it one night after work but after really reading the recipe it was definitely a weekend dinner. So last Sunday night I finally made it. Now for one thing, I haven’t been doing a majority of the cooking lately. I have turned the kitchen over to Eric. And not only did I make dinner, I made a dessert too. (will post that one later – it was delicious!) This turned out great. The aroma was wonderful while it was cooking and the flavor was outstanding. We will definitely make this one again and again. So I had to blog it.

So my blog post have become my way to preserve my favorite recipes. If I am out shopping and know that I am going to make something from it for dinner or dessert, I can easily look up the ingredients. I can share favorite recipes from here and look back and see why we made something and what we thought


1/4 cup olive oil; more as needed
3 medium lemons, washed, ends trimmed, and halved crosswise (about 1 lb.)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tsp. granulated garlic
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 2 lb.)
4 to 5 medium Yukon Gold or red-skin potatoes, each cut into 6 wedges (about 2 lb.)
2 Tbs. honey
2 tsp. finely chopped fresh oregano, plus sprigs for garnish


Position a rack in the center of the oven, and heat the oven to 450°F.

Lightly brush a large foil-lined rimmed baking sheet with oil. Arrange the lemon halves close together flesh side up in the center of the prepared pan. Brush the tops with 2 tsp. of the oil. Roast until just beginning to brown on the edges and the foil under the lemons turns dark brown and syrupy, 25 to 27 minutes.

Turn the lemon halves over with tongs, and rub the flesh over the dark spots on the foil to loosen the caramelized bits (the lemon flesh will turn brown). Transfer to a rimmed plate with any accumulated juices from the pan, and cool completely. Reserve the baking sheet.

Lower the oven temperature to 425°F. When the lemons are cool, squeeze 4 halves (including the pulp) into a large bowl. Add the accumulated juices from the plate (the juice will be thick and syrupy). Whisk in 1-1/2 tsp. salt, 1-1/2 tsp. granulated garlic, 1 tsp. oil, and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Add the chicken to the bowl, and toss to coat. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, tossing occasionally. Put the chicken on the reserved baking sheet in a single layer skin side up. Rub any remaining marinade from the bowl evenly over the chicken.

Add the potatoes to the same bowl with the remaining 3 Tbs. oil, 1-1/2 tsp. granulated garlic, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Toss to coat. Spread the potatoes in a single layer on the pan with the chicken.

Roast until an instant-read thermometer registers 165°F in the thickest part of the thighs, and the potatoes are light golden-brown, tossing the potatoes halfway through cooking time, about 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, squeeze the remaining 2 lemon halves, including the pulp, into a small bowl (the juice will be thick and syrupy). Mince the peel of 1 of the remaining lemon halves (discard the other), and add to the bowl along with the honey and oregano, mixing well to combine. Brush the lemon-honey glaze evenly onto the chicken thighs. Return to the oven for 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate, and tent with foil.

Turn the broiler to high, and broil until the potatoes are golden, turning the pan halfway through broiling time, 2 to 3 minutes more. Arrange the chicken and potatoes on a large platter, garnish with oregano sprigs, and serve.


Wiener Schnitzel

One of my son’s favorite dinners is Wiener Schnitzel, so when hubby was away for a couple of weeks for work, I catered to him.  This is pretty easy to make and very tastyUsing the pork tenderloin and cutting it small pieces and pounding it down to small rounds gives you the scallop size you need for this recipe. Topping it off with fresh lemon juice keeps it moist, but you can also use a dipping sauce or dressing as well.  

And don;t confuse this recipe with our little wiener dog! 


1 1/2 pounds pork scallops, divided by 4 and pounded thin as for scaloppini
1/2 cup flour

3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup fine dry bread crumbs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons sunflower or canola oil
3 tablespoons butter
1 lemon


Place flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 individual shallow dishes. Season cutlets with salt and pepper. Dredge in flour, shake of excess, dredge through egg, and last in bread crumbs.

Heat the oil in large skillet, add butter, and heat until foam subsides. Add 1 Schnitzel at a time to pan, brown from both sides about 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to plate lined with paper towels and place in 250 degree F oven to keep warm. Repeat with other Schnitzel. Serve with lemon wedges.


Slow Cooker Honey Soy Pork Tenderloins

Yesterday I wanted a recipe that was new, flavorful and easy.  We were spending the day decorating the tree and the rest of the house.  Hubby requested that whatever we had he didn’t want something that we would easily make on a weeknight.

I found this recipe in my saved videos on Facebook from Tip Hero.  I had saved it quite awhile ago and remembered that it looked like it would be very tasty.  The video version seemed easy enough,  you just mixed the topping and pour it over the meat that was placed in the bottom of the Crockpot and cook for 6 hours on low.  I had all the ingredients on hand, but used two port tenderloins rather than a roast.  That probably reduced the calories some because there was n o fat on these tenderloins.

So, while dinner cooked,  we began decorating the tree.  Note began – we haven’t finished yet!


3 to 4 pounds pork loin roast or two tenderloins
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 tablespoons dried basil
½ teaspoon black pepper
¾ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
½ cup honey
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup soy sauce
⅔ cup Parmesan cheese, grated


Place the pork loin roast in the inner pot of a slow cooker. In a medium bowl, combine the dried oregano, dried basil, black pepper, salt, minced garlic, honey, soy sauce and Parmesan cheese, and mix well. Pour the sauce over the pork loin roast into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

Remove the cooked pork loin roast from the slow cooker, reserving the liquid. Shred the meat.
Add the reserved cooking liquid to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until reduced and thickened. Pour the reduced, thickened sauce over the shredded meat and serve.


Sunday Dinner

Last Sunday was hubby’s turn to make dinner.  I had to go out and check in on my mother and run a few errands for I turned the dinner plans over to him.  While I was gone he was providing transportation for our son activities of the day and running to the grocery store for our never ending grocery list. While he was there he picked up the necessary ingredients for his dinner plan.
His inspiration came from Pinterest and also thinking back to the summer grilling ideas of the past for the main entrée.  The chicken idea was very easy and the pasta side dish  was a quick and very flavorful.  Since it was a pasta dish our son loved it, minus the mushrooms. There was enough pasta left over for  refrigerator review night!


Creamy Garlic and Mushroom Pasta

8 ounces pasta (spaghetti, linguine, etc.)
4 tablespoons butter, divided
3 cloves garlic, minced, divided
16 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon herbes de provence
1½ cups milk
salt and pepper to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil
additional ¼ cup water, broth, milk or cream (optional)
¼ cup fresh parsley (more to taste)

Cook the pasta according to package directions. Set aside and toss with a little oil to prevent sticking.

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium high heat. Add one clove of the garlic and sauté for a minute until fragrant. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 5-10 minutes, until golden brown and softened. Set aside.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to the pan and melt again over medium high heat. Add the garlic and sauté for a minute until fragrant. Add the flour and herbes de provence. Stir fry for a minute to cook out the flour taste. Add the milk slowly, whisking to incorporate. Let the mixture simmer until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.

Toss the sauce, pasta, and mushrooms together. Add the olive oil and water as needed to keep the sauce from getting too thick. Stir in the parsley just before serving.

Grilled Chicken with Brushetta Topping

4 Thin sliced boneless Chicken Breast
1/2 cup Brushetta Topping
Penzey’s Northwoods Seasonings

Season the chicken with the seasoning salt (Use the Penzey’s Northwoods or your own favorite marinade seasonings or rub).  Grill chicken until done and top with a spoonful of prepared bruschetta topping.  Our local Wegmans carries the topping on the olive bar.   Other topping ideas is the olive marinade or prepared pesto.    


Pork Tenderloin with Capers and Olives on the light side!

I’m back.  Things were pretty busy around here over the holidays. I had every intention to blog more and highlight the holidays at our house but it didn’t work out that way. Maybe next year I can carve out a time to highlight the best part of cooking for the holidays at our house.  So new year, new cooking ideas and adventures to come.  Here is the first blog of 2016!
 It seems that everyone is jumping in on the New Years resolution to eat healthier and exercise more.  And from my husbands observation from his visits to the gym, resolutions only last so long. The first few weeks is a frenzy of activities.  Stores are selling new exercise wear, the end caps at grocery stores carry the multi-packs weight loss products but by the end of January, it becomes forgotten until it is time to push bathing suits. 
I think that we have been on the eating healthier kick for quite some time.  Sure we can make some great sweets and over indulge on savory treats, but we always come back to making sure we are eating right.  This is evident when you look through my binder of recipes and find a ton of recipes from Cooking Light dating back 15 years or so. This one is not so old, but was set aside to give a try. I never got around to it until a couple of weeks ago. I made it one night over the Christmas holidays when I was on vacation.  The end result was the proclamation from our dietitian in training that “It’s a keeper”!  Even pleased our son because of the olives and pasta we served along side.   I think it is time to pull out more of those older recipes, especially the lighter ones.

Pork Tenderloin with Olives and Capers



1 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pitted kalamata olives

2 tablespoons capers

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Cut pork crosswise into 8 pieces. Place each pork piece between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap, and pound to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Sprinkle both sides of the pork with salt and pepper. Place the flour in a shallow bowl. Dredge pork in flour, turning to coat; shake off the excess flour. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add half of pork, and cook 2 minutes on each side or until done. Remove pork mixture from pan, and keep warm. Repeat procedure with the remaining oil and pork. Return pork to pan. Add wine and broth; bring to a boil. Stir in olives and capers; cook 4 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley.


Pork Roast leftover plan- a little late but still worth the post

What do you do with half of a 13 lb. center cut pork roast left over after Christmas dinner?  Search the Internet for recipes that will use this creatively and not just reheated or used in a sandwich.  My family Christmas this year was held at our house and to get our entire family together we had it on the 26th.  When you count all of my brothers and sisters,  spouses, grandchildren and their significant others or spouses,  great grandchildren and my mother you have 33 people. 
The whole family minus the twins at my niece’s wedding this summer
The main course was roast pork loin at the request of my mother.   I estimated needed 10 pounds, hubby thought that was not enough.  When I spoke to the butcher he agreed with hubby so we updated the order to at least 12 pounds.   When I got to the store for pickup the total weight was 12.88 pounds. 
I cut the roast in half before baking  so that it would cook quicker.   Now my favorite way to cook a pork roast is with kosher salt and fresh rosemary rubbed over the top.  The initial baking time and temperature is 325 degrees for 20 minutes a pound.  Works every time and should register around 145 when it comes out of the oven with a 15 to 20 minutes rest time before carving.
This roast cooked beautifully and went well with the full smorgasbord of food we had.  When dinner was all said and done I had a full half of the roast left over (6+ pounds), more than half a pan of Lasagna.  Not many people were interested in leftovers with a full counter of dessert delights to finish off the night. 
The evening ended pretty early with all of the little ones getting sleepy with this being their 3rd or 4th Christmas celebration.  Very few leftovers went home with my family, except my mom and her request for stuffing and pork left overs, which left us with a large quantity to take care of.   It seemed that everyone had their own leftovers from the previous celebrations that we were left to become creative.  So I took the 6 pound roast, cut it into thirds and froze two of them.  The last piece was used in this recipe hubby found on Food.com.   This was pretty easy to make and had great flavor. We even had leftovers from this that we saved for my mom.

Hot off the stove the steam can be seen rising

Nice size pieces of pork and tomatoes can be seen over a bed of noodles

Roast Pork Comfort 


1 -2 lb cooked pork, cut in cubes

2 celery ribs, diced

1/2 onion, diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

3 tablespoons butter

1 bell pepper, diced

2 tablespoons flour

1 (16 ounce) can tomatoes, stewed

10 ounces beef consommé

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 beef bouillon cube

1 teaspoon caraway seed

fresh ground pepper

celery salt

1 cup sour cream

buttered egg noodles or white rice

Melt butter in large sauce pan, add celery onion, garlic and bell pepper sauté until just tender crisp, or until your liking stir in flour. add beef consommé, beef bouillon and stewed tomato’s, Worcestershire sauce , caraway seed and cook 30 minutes adding more liquid as needed, 10 minutes before serving add pork, black pepper and celery salt as needed, stir in sour cream heat and serve over buttered egg noodles or white rice.

Late Summer Dinner with Grilled Bone-In Pork Chops and Tomato and Ricotta Salata Spaghetti

 You can tell that summer is quickly coming to an end.  It is getting darker much earlier and the nights are getting cooler.  The weather reminds me of our fall trips to Napa where it is warm during the day and cool at night.  With this realization we needed to get our Foodie Friends over for dinner and enjoy some really good wine.  So Saturday morning we called them up and invited them over.  We had them bring the appetizer because dinner to dessert was covered.  Hubby made a Bobby Flay Potato Salad he has come to love this summer and made his  Blueberry pie for dessert.  I was in charge of the rest of the dinner. 

I first took our last home grown Zucchini and sliced it up, placed it in a tin foil pouch with olive oil, kosher salt and red pepper flakes.  That was already for the grill when hubby cooked the pork chops.  This is a great way to cook vegetables in the summer.    I had visited our small garden that morning and  pick a whole big bowl of grape tomatoes, green peppers and some hot peppers that were suppose to be jalapeno’s but most definitely are not.  They are round, red and grow upward.  The grape tomatoes I would use in my pasta recipe, hubby would use the hot peppers in his salad and the green peppers would be for a later day.  Then I hit my herb garden and picked the chives, thyme, basil and rosemary.   There is nothing better than the fresh herbs right outside your door.  Sure beats paying  a bundle for a really small amount at the grocery store.  Pay that amount up front in the spring at the garden center and place them in a pot right outside your kitchen or in a small herb garden.

  • Tomato and Ricotta Salata with Spaghetti


5 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 8 ounces uncooked spaghetti 
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) ricotta salata cheese, crumbled


  1. 1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. 2. Place tomatoes on a foil-lined baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil; sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon salt. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until tomatoes collapse.
  3. 3. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/3 cup cooking liquid. Return pasta and reserved liquid to pan; stir in tomatoes, remaining 4 teaspoons oil, remaining 3/8 teaspoon salt, basil, pepper, and cheese. Toss well. Serve immediately.
Grilled Pork Chop with Shallot Butter


  • (7-ounce) bone-in center-cut pork chops 
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh chives
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons minced shallots
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind


  1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.   Sprinkle both sides of pork evenly with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Combine oil, chives, thyme, rosemary, and garlic, stirring well. Rub oil mixture evenly over both sides of pork. Place pork on grill rack; grill 6 minutes on each side or until a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of pork registers 155°. Remove pork from grill; let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  2. Combine butter, shallots, and lemon rind, stirring well. Spread about 1 teaspoon butter mixture over each pork chop; let the pork stand an additional 5 minutes.

Picky eaters favorite dinner!

Do you every look at your children and say ” hmm, this one is just like me or that one is so totally my husband’?  Well, when it comes to eating I can definitely say that about my children.  My oldest is just like my husband.  Will try anything, great eater and adventurous.  My youngest is just like me – picky!  My mother would blame herself for my eating habits when I was little, because she said she kept me on baby food too long.  Go figure that out growing up in a Diner.  I am not a cold sandwich lover.  I wanted a hot lunch, soup preferred.  But I did like the good stuff.  Steak, Prime Rib, shrimp, scallops, you know the expensive stuff.  When I was little and we went out to a restaurant, no hot dog hamburg for me.  It was a steak or prime rib, baked potato.

Well my youngest is the same way.  We can not get him to eat a grilled cheese for anything.  He won’t eat a sandwich unless it is a sub from Subway.  But give him a plate of calamari and he thinks he is eating exotic!  Well today is his birthday and I owe him one of his favorite dinners. I found this recipe in Fine Cooking and thought, “He will never eat it!”  Was I wrong.  He loves it and asks for it.  I think that is what I will have to make for him this weekend.

Pork Scaloppine with Prosciutto, Sage & Caramelized Lemon

Happy Birthday my little man!