Posted at 2:10 pm , on January 20, 2021
One of my favorite ways to dress up a pork chop is to add chimichurri. Pork chops don’t have to be dry and bland. By adding a simple marinade and a flavorful topping, pork chops can be a most appealing meal. The chimichurri is the star of this recipe, made with the flavors of red chile and lime. This combination is second to none with fresh herbs, red chile pistachios and queso fresco cheese. Once the pork has marinated this meal can be prepared in 15 minutes. The chimichurri provided flavor, texture and spice which tasted so good with the grilled pork. To complete this meal serve alongside a baked potato and garden salad. Pork chops never tasted so good!
Posted at 11:06 am , on January 5, 2021
One of my favorite combinations is cranberry and orange. Let’s face it, these two just belong together, whether it’s scones, muffins, cranberry sauce or cranberry relish. Cranberries are in season now so if you love this tarty fruit you might want to pick up a bag or two and put in the freezer. I started freezing them so that I had some to cook with all year long. I prefer fresh or frozen berries to dried cranberries plus they don’t have the added sugar that dried cranberries do. Along with antioxidants, they provide many vitamins and minerals that we all need in our daily diet. I must confess, sweet rolls probably negate all the positives of eating cranberries but after the year we’ve had I’m going to give myself a break and indulge in a few rolls. The rest can be frozen for up to a couple month’s. I like to freeze 2 rolls per package and that way I can have a sweet roll now and then. These rolls are messy and don’t look as perfect as some of my other sweet rolls but the taste is among the best. For me it always starts with brioche dough, I never waver with any other dough, it’s just that good. The cranberry orange jam was adapted from “Plated Cravings”. I had an idea of what the filling should be and this recipe was about as perfect as I could have imagined. And if that’s not enough I made an orange glaze that soaked into every crack and crevice of these rolls. I hope you’ll keep these in mind next time you are craving sweet rolls. They have a festive feel for the holidays but I think they would be perfect any time of year.
Posted at 10:54 am , on December 29, 2020
Around the holidays one of the things I enjoy most is a cup of hot chocolate. Just holding a cup of hot cocoa brings a warmth and serenity especially during the cold winter days and nights. I’ve made my own cocoa mix many times but this year I varied just a bit and made some Mexican blend with a hint of red chili and cinnamon. It tastes so decadent and creamy. On the weekends I enjoy some quiet time with a good book and a cup of cocoa. If you like this pretty cup you can find it at Persephone Bakery Cafe in Jackson Hole, WY. I hear the pastries, sandwiches and coffee are to die for. It’s where Josh calls home now and is a barista by day at both Persephone Bakery and Picnic. With Covid 19 this past year we cancelled our plans to visit but fingers crossed we will make it up to Jackson Hole next summer and let Josh be our guide around the Tetons and beyond.
Posted at 9:26 am , on December 9, 2020
What’s more comforting that a bowl of steaming hot chicken noodle soup? Maybe a bowl of chicken noodle soup with roasted green chile. The steamy broth and heat of the chile gives you a cozy feeling whether you are under the weather or trying to keep warm on a cold day. I seasoned the chicken with verde seasoning to give it a little Southwest flavor and let it simmer in chicken broth for a couple hours until it was so tender it would just fall apart. Once the chicken is prepared everything else can go back in the pot with the exception of the green chile. In the time it takes to cook the noodles this soup is done. The green chile is already roasted and chopped so it can be added to the cooked soup along with a sprinkle of dried cilantro and your done.
Posted at 11:36 am , on December 1, 2020
Kansas City is home to some of the best barbeque on earth, especially their burnt ends. As many of you know Joe and I made our home in the Kansas City area for 25 years. One of the things we miss most is the barbeque and particularly the burnt ends from Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que. Joe’s is by far our favorite bbq and we’ve ordered it several times since moving back to New Mexico. Yes, you can order their champion barbeque which is packed in dry ice and sent straight to your door. Each meat is smoked to perfection and vacuum sealed with a handbook of instructions on how to reheat each item, whether it be brisket, ribs, sausage, chicken or burnt ends. I successfully made smoked ribs a few years back which was a triumphant moment for me. Burnt ends would be the ultimate goal if I could pull it off. As it turned out, my oldest son Josh was home for a visit and he was a huge help. We worked together keeping the charcoal going and trying to keep the grill temperature steady while waiting patiently for the internal temperature of the beef to reach the magic number. It took a little over 8 hours to reach our goal and our burnt ends were so tender and flavorful. We smoked 6 1/2 pounds and it was gone in a matter of days. Josh and I agreed that this is our new tradition, when he comes home we make burnt ends.
Posted at 9:31 am , on November 3, 2020
Recently I came across a recipe for honey mustard coleslaw. It sounded intriguing but at the same time I was skeptical. When it comes to coleslaw I’ve always been about the tried and true recipe which has never failed me. I decided to just go with it and picked up a bag of pre-chopped cabbage and added my own spicy honey mustard sauce. To my surprise it was delicious! And it makes a great chicken sandwich which was too good not to share. If there were any doubts, I can truly say this is one of my favorite ways to dress a sandwich. I think I will try it next on some pulled pork or pulled chicken.
Posted at 9:42 am , on October 30, 2020
Week No. 3 . . . The Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway is an 83-mile loop through the mountains, valleys, mesa’s and national forestland of Northern New Mexico. The loop goes from Taos to Questa to Red River to Eagle Nest to Angel Fire and back around to Taos. This picture was taken along the Rio Grande River between Espanola and Taos. Taos had by far the best fall colors with the Cottonwood trees ablaze with golden leaves. Most of these pictures were taken as we were driving but we did stop occasionally to capture some panoramic photos. Along the way the scenery changes from the Taos colors to the valleys of Angel Fire. The lake at Eagle Nest is so picturesque with the sparkling blue water with the hilltop landscape in the background. Red River is a tourist haven nestled in the mountains with pine trees, rivers and ponds. It’s always cooler up in the northern part of the state and a great getaway to cool off in the summer month’s or enjoy skiing in the winter. Taos is one of my favorite places on earth. It’s the most charming little town with unique local artists displaying their works in and around town. Whenever you visit New Mexico this might be the perfect place to start.
Posted at 10:24 am , on October 28, 2020
We first visited the 4th of July trailhead in August. We were looking for a place to hike where it was cooler because at that time the temperature was quite warm in Albuquerque and was too hot for outdoor activities. 4th of July trailhead is located on the south and west side of the Manzano Mountains. It’s about 1 1/2 hours to get to the trailhead with the last 6 miles being a dusty dirt road dotted with big rocks and potholes to navigate through. It’s slow going that last bit but well worth the trip. When the colors began to change we knew that 4th of July trail would be packed with people on the weekend with very little parking so we went during the week. We arrived around 3:30 in the afternoon. As it turned out our timing couldn’t have been more perfect. The sun was lower and coming through the trees lighting them up in their most vibrant colors. From the August greenery to the October colors, the trail was indescribable. I wouldn’t have recognized it had we not just been there a couple month’s earlier. The colors were even more vibrant that I could imagine. And as we walked I tried to get every color of leaf which ranged from an off white to a vibrant purple. Almost every color was represented and it reminded me of an enchanted forest from a fairy tale. I can’t imagine another place quite like 4th of July trailhead! Come take a walk with us and enjoy the colors of New Mexico!
Posted at 10:25 am , on October 26, 2020
Since Joe and I returned to New Mexico we’ve enjoyed taking day trips and hiking trails that are new to us. This year we were determined to see some of the fall colors around the state. We spent 3 weekends in October exploring different areas, each one offering a distinctive experience. The first weekend we went north to the ski valley near Santa Fe to hike the Aspen Vista Trail which is about 11 miles round trip. And no we didn’t make it the entire way but we did walk about 7 of the 11 miles. The Aspens are plentiful and they are spectacular! The golden yellow leaves at times look as if they are on fire. The early morning hours are the quiet times when the trails are less traveled and we can take our time to enjoy the view. With Covid 19 spiking again and nothing to do it seemed like everyone had the same idea to get away and enjoy the beautiful leaf tour. By driving to the trails early, we could easily get a parking spot and enjoy the trails with a handful of early birds. By lunchtime it’s a different story, many more folks just getting started as we wind our way back. We always pack a picnic lunch and find a spot to enjoy the view. It’s a serene time to get away in this year 2020. We are fortunate to be able to travel an hour or two to a beautiful haven in which to get away and forget the worries of the world if only for one day!
Posted at 10:53 am , on October 23, 2020
My husband Joe is a steak and potatoes kind of guy. I have to be creative sometimes to come up with different ways to serve it so it’s not the same old dish time after time. This idea came from a pinterest photo that looked like stir fried steak and potatoes. However when I tried to connect to the recipe it was no longer available so I just went by the picture and took ideas on how to make it my own. The picture clearly had steak, potatoes, corn and red pepper plus some green herbs that were not distinguishable. And it also looked like it had some type of sauce, perhaps Siracha or salsa with pepper flakes. It looked so appetizing I thought I would give it a try. Instead of making it a wok dish I decided to cook some things on the grill and then add everything together in a cast iron skillet with salsa to bind it together. It was truly delicious and spicy.