Pork Chops with Creamy Mushroom Sauce

Pork Chops with Creamy Mushroom Sauce

We don't always have meat with dinner. Usually twice a week we skip the meat and fill up on plant-based proteins like beans or maybe when dinner is rushed I throw together a simple gluten free pasta something. But when it's not a meatless night, we like our meat! (and veggies).

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Asian Sweet Pork Salad & Tangy Basil-Lime Dressing

Asian Sweet Pork Salad & Tangy Basil-Lime Dressing

The best thing about crock-pot dinners (besides the obvious low-maintenance) is that you usually end up with leftovers. One of the easiest and tastiest things to throw in a slow cooker is meat. The longer it cooks the more tender and flavorful it gets and my favorite for the crock-pot is pork.

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Gluten Free Spanish Pork Paella

Gluten Free Spanish Pork Paella

 Ah, Spain! Warm Mediterranean breezes, siestas in the middle of the day...okay, so I've never been to Spain. In fact, I've never even left the country! Ugh, lame! Man, I need a vacation. It doesn't matter who you are there is nothing like getting away from the routine of everyday life and experiencing something new. Alex and I would love to do some serious traveling. Honestly, if I could, I would live in a different country every year. How amazing would it be to immerse yourself in Italian, Irish, or French culture for a whole year? (I hear there is a lot of gluten free awareness in Ireland.) But the reality is...that's not going to happen any time soon...or ever.So how do you break up the norm? Keep your enthusiasm and a sense of adventure? If you would have asked me that a year ago I probably would have told you lots of great things that all would have begun with the word "I". "I need...", "I want..." Yes, taking care of your own needs and wants is very important - I absolutely need some time to myself to pray, to read, to workout, to get lost playing the piano, to think, to just sit still and breath. Now, however, I think my answer would also include serving others. There is so much joy, and self-fulfillment when you help others fulfill their needs and wants. It seems like a counterintuitive notion doesn't it? But I've been on the giving and receiving end of selfless service and no matter how you slice, service is key.So even though I hope to one day, I won't be going to Europe in the near future. I can, however, keep my passion, adventurous spirit, and excitement for life alive and encourage my kids to do the same. Dream big. Hope. Aspire. Work for it. Until we get there though, there is one way to experience a taste of it. Eat it!    So last night we visited Spain ...at least during dinner (gluten free, Food L'amor style!) Fancy right?! No, this wasn't a dinner for two. I wish! This Spanish Pork Paella has a easy going mild, all-around, tasty flavor and the kiddos liked it too. Even without the peaceful siesta's and ocean breezes it was perfect!Paella is just the Spaniards version of comfort food using meat, veggies, and rice. There are a ton of different ways to make it and you could still call it paella. So here's my gluten free version...

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Herb Pork Chops with Apples, Mushrooms, and Caramelized Onion

Herb Pork Chops with Apples, Mushrooms, and Caramelized Onion

After all the intensity of this last year it really has made me stop and realize how precious each moment is. Not to sound like a Hallmark card, but for Christmas all I really wanted was not to worry too much about meaningless things that fill our time and instead give the gift of an experience together. Memories last much longer than that cute pair of boots or a toy that will break next week. If I didn't appreciate my family before then this last year certainly put all that into perspective.Even though Christmas is over I'm still loving the holidays, the prospects of a crisp new year, and being around lots of friends and family. If you're planning on entertaining over New Years this dish will impress! Caramelized onions and mushrooms, juicy herbed pork chops and apple slices...mmmm. Not only is it good, but it's healthy. No breading or cream of anything. 

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Pork Sandwich with {Homemade} Lemon-Tarragon Mayo

Pork Sandwich with {Homemade} Lemon-Tarragon Mayo

This sandwich reminds me of something you might find at a French Bristro, but by making it homemade it makes it just a little more special and the from-scratch mayo makes it even more French and fancy.  This sandwich can be super simple or, with a little prep at the beginning of the week, you can have it on some gluten free {Homemade} Sandwich Bread.  Serve it with a yummy French inspired soup like Creamy Saffron Soup. Thin center cut pork chops, one per sandwich 1 tbsp. olive oil Salt and pepper gruyere cheese, sliced Sliced bread Tomatoes, sliced lettuce, rinsed and dried On the plate put some of Grandmas Homemade Sweet Dill Pickles In a skillet heat olive oil.  Salt and pepper chops or use your favorite seasoning.  Cook chops until both sides are a golden brown and the inside is not longer pink. {Homemade} Lemon-Tarragon Mayo (Yes there is raw egg so if you're pregnant just add the lemon zest and tarragon to your favorite store bought brand.) 1 egg yolk 1 teaspoon prepared Dijon mustard 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar good pinch of salt pinch of pepper dash sugar 1 cup olive oil 1 tsp. freshly grated lemon zest 2 sprigs tarragon leaves, roughly chopped

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Mint Lime Pork Chops with Creole Sweet Potato Chips

Mint Lime Pork Chops with Creole Sweet Potato Chips
 

As mom's everywhere give a collective sigh of relief (mixed with anxiety) as we send the kiddos back to school it's a perfect time to get all that summer cooking out of your system before the cold weather sets in. This dish is perfect for the final days of summer.  These tangy, fresh yet savory chops will help you hold onto summer even as the leaves start to change and paired up with {Homemade} spicy, Cajun style sweet potatoes you'll feel warm and toasty even on a cool day.For the Chops:2 tbsp. olive oil1 yellow onion, chopped1 clove garlic, minced1 jalapeno, seeded and mincedSalt and pepperIn a large skillet heat olive oil.  Add onion, garlic, jalapeno, salt and pepper.  Saute until onions are translucent and caramelized.  While they are working in the skillet, in a separate bowl combine:5 mint leafs, chopped1 tbsp. olive oiljuice of 1 lime + zestWhen the onion and friends are done scoop them into the bowl along with the mint and lime.  Stir to combine.  Set aside while you prep the chops.4 boneless pork chops, rinsed and patted drysalt and peppercoconut flour, enough to dredge the chops through2-3 tbsp. olive oil1/2 cup chicken brothSalt and pepper both sides of the pork chops.  Coat the chops with the coconut flour that's been dumped onto a plate or pie pan.  Heat olive oil in the same skillet you cooked the onions in.  Place the chops in the skillet.  Brown on both sides.  Now pour in the broth and scrape up all the yummy bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. (P.S. the coconut flour from the chops will help to thicken the broth as it simmers).  Add the mint, lime and onion combo making sure to stir it around.  Allow to simmer until chops are moist, tender and no longer pink.For the Sweet Potatoes:sweet potatoes (yams), peeled and thinly slicedcreole seasoning to tasteolive oilPreheat the boiler while you peel and slice sweet potatoes.  Drizzle enough olive oil to coat taters.  Sprinkle as liberally as you like with creole seasoning.  Lay taters out on a baking sheet.  Try not to overlap too much,  you want all your taters to get a tan.  Broil for 3-5 minutes or until they turn a golden brown.  Turn over and broil for another 3-5 minutes.Serve with a simple side salad.

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Hawaiian Pork Shish Kabobs

Hawaiian Pork Shish Kabobs

I'd like to extend a warm welcome to the warm weather by starting up the grill! It doesn't matter what season it is, I always say, "this is my favorite season!" As the merry winter melts into spring, which then bursts into summer then cools and seems to light on fire with fall leaves.  I just can't help it.  I find myself embracing the excitement of something new.  Which inspired something new for dinner tonight!  These Hawaiian Pork Shish Kabobs are as fun to eat as they are delicious.  The juicy pineapple, crunchy bell pepper, mellow mushroom and sweet pork are complemented with a sweet and tangy marinade.

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Inside-out Egyptian Cabbage Roll and Pork Roast

Inside-out Egyptian Cabbage Roll and Pork Roast

 

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Herb-Crusted Chops & Apples with Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Herb-Crusted Chops & Apples with Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes

It seems like the cooler it gets the more comfort food I crave.  These savory pork chops crusted with herbs and topped with sweet sauteed apples and paired up with creamy garlic mashed potatoes is perfect for when family comes for a visit or just for a night at home. Pork Chops4-6 center cut pork chops (one per person)Salt and pepperthymerosemarysage1 tbsp. olive oil1/4 cup chicken broth 1/4 cup lemon juiceSeason pork chops on one side with salt, pepper, thyme, rosemary and sage (just sprinkle until it looks good to you).  Heat olive oil and chicken broth in large skillet.  Lay chops, seasoned side down into skillet.  Only 3-4 at a time so they don't get over crowded.  Squeeze some lemon juice on top of the chops in the skillet and sprinkle more salt, pepper, thyme, rosemary and sage on.  Cook on both sides until no longer pink inside (cook time will depend on thickness of chops.)  Repeat for remaining pork chops.Garlic Mashed Potatoes3-5 lbs. small red potatoes (adjust for how many hungry people you've got. * Cream sauce amount is for 3 lbs.)1/4 cup fat free cream cheese1 1/2 - 2 cups skim or 1% milk1 tsp thyme1 clove garlic, grated1 green onion, chopped.  Reserve green tops. (I forgot the tops for the picture...oops!)Boil potatoes in salted water.  Just leave the skins on, but remove any eyes or blemishes before. (Eww, that just sounded like I was describing a head.  It's just potatoes peoples!).   While potatoes boil combine in a small sauce pan cream cheese, milk, garlic, thyme and white ends of the green onion.  Bring to a simmer, stirring constantly until cream cheese is melted and steamy.  Dump water off potatoes once they are easily pierced with a fork.  Pour garlic cream sauce over top and, using a hand mixer or potato masher, mash potatoes and incorporate cream sauce. Top with chopped green onion tops.Sauteed Apples4-6 apples, sliced (about one per pork chop)2 tbsp lemon juice1 tbsp Smart Balance butter2 tbsp apple juice2 tbsp oat flour (place about a 1/4 cup of plain instant oatmeal in food processor until about the consistency of flour)1 tbsp agave nectar or 1-2 tsp stevia powderCut up apples and squeeze lemon juice over top.  Melt butter in small skillet, add oat flour and whisk together until it makes a paste.  Pour in apple juice, sliced apples and agave or stevia.  Saute until apples are a tender crisp. Put it all together So everything gets done about the same time, here's probably the best order to do things.  First slice up your apples, pour lemon juice over top, cover and set aside. Put oats into food processor and pulse until as close to a flour consistency as you can get.  Rinse pork chops and pat dry.  Rinse potatoes (you can half or quarter if they're big) .  Start by boiling potatoes while you prepare chops.  While first shift of chops are cooking prep another skillet for apples. While second shift of chops are cooking make garlic cream sauce for mashed potatoes.  Cover chops when done and set aside. Mash potatoes and blend with garlic cream sauce.  Cover and set aside. Cook apple in skillet. Now stack it up.  A mound of mashed potatoes, a pork chop on that, and topped with a scoop of apples.  Savory food l'more! * By just making a few simple adjustments I made this savory and potentially very fattening dish a little less fattening, but still just as savory. 1: Instead of using a ton of oil to fry the pork chops I just used a little oil and replaced the rest with chicken broth and lemon juice. 2: By using fat free cream cheese and skim or 1% milk I cut out a bunch of fat and calories.  3:  Instead of using regular butter I used Smart Balance butter with Omega-6, ground up oats instead of using bleached white flour, and if you replace sugar with agave or stevia  you're cutting out calories and adding nutrients to your savory and HEALTHY meal.

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Fired Up Pork Ribs!

Fired Up Pork Ribs!

It's the last hurrah of summer so why not go out with some hot, fall of the bone pork ribs.  And I mean HOT! These baby-backs were part of our Labor Day BBQ and they were a big hit.  This spicy rub will cover two large racks of pork ribs.

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Melissa Cornwall has spent years researching and implementing nutritionally-based approaches to health and wellness. Her lifelong love of food and health evolved from a hobby to a passion when her daughter was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease.

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