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Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Twenty minute dinner: Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

I get a little itchy if I don’t get to cook.

The way musicians get when you keep them away from a stage, or an athlete when you take the ball away or how a runner will start to chew on the curtains if he can’t get out on the road. Even on the tail end of writing recipes for my second cookbook, like this one, I spend most days cooking in my kitchen surrounded by dirty dishes and half empty bottles of beer. And even though I should be writing recipes for my cookbook, I just wanted to make something that I wanted to make because I wanted to make it. It just happened to turn out photogenic, and so delicious that I wanted to share it with you. It’s an amalgamation of stuff in my fridge as well as half started recipes in my brain, and it also helped me use up one of those half empty bottles of beer I had laying around. And in the midst of cooking three other recipes, this one just took twenty minutes, which is good given the amount of cooking I need to do on a daily basis.

After six hours of cooking, and three rounds of dishes, I feel a little less itchy. But I do need a beer, a full one.

Twenty minute dinner: Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • ½ lbs raw Italian sausage (removed from casings)
  • 2 tbs pale ale, plus ½ cup pale ale, divided
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 lbs asparagus
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 wt oz fresh shredded parmesan cheese (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tsp honey
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups orzo
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ½ cup grape tomatoes (optional)

Directions

  1. In a small bowl stir together the sausage, 2 tbs pale ale, and 1 tsp red pepper flakes with your hands. Form into small balls, about half the size of golf balls.
  2. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium high heat. Add the meatballs, cook until browned on all sides and cooked through, remove from pan.
  3. Add the asparagus to the hot pan, cook until softened and starting to blister, about 5 minutes, remove from pan.
  4. Add the remaining ½ cup pale ale, scraping to deglaze the pan. Lower heat to medium, stir in the cream. Simmer until reduced and thickened, about 6 minutes. Stir in the parmesan, honey, and black pepper
  5. Cook the orzo in lightly salted boiling water for 6 minutes or until just before al dente. Drain and add the orzo to the sauce, stirring until cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the meatballs and asparagus back into the pan, simmer until meatballs are warmed through. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with parsley and tomatoes.
https://domesticfits.com/asparagus-sausage-meatball-orzo-parmesan-beer-cream-sauce/

Twenty minute dinner: Asparagus and Sausage Meatball Orzo with Parmesan Beer Cream Sauce

Beer Carnitas Pizza

 

Beer carnitas pizza

When I was kid Mexican Pizza involved ice burg lettuce and cheap ground beef. Possibly the perfect example of how neither Mexican food or pizza were given proper credit for the potential they had to compete in the Fine Food arena. They were both disregarded as low brow for far too long, but then again, so was beer. It took America awhile to see what Mozza did for pizza, what Rick Bayless did for Mexican food and what the craft beer industry as a whole did for beer.

It’s good thing we all woke up to the fact that we need to up our pizza night game. It’s a win for all of us.

Plus, it goes better with the good beer we’re now drinking.

Beer carnitas pizza3

 

I use this Beer Pizza Dough recipe, unless I fail to plan ahead, then I use this One Hour Beer Pizza Dough recipe.

Beer Carnitas Pizza

Ingredients

  • 4 lb pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 5 inches pieces
  • 1 tbs kosher salt
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 1 cup IPA
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • pinch cayenne
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 lb pizza dough
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • ½ cup chopped tomatoes
  • ¼ cup Mexican Crema

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Sprinkle the meat all over with the salt. Add to a shallow dish, cover and refrigerate for 12 hours and up to 3 days (if you skip this step make sure to salt the meat well before proceeding).
  3. In a large Dutch oven, or roasting pan over two burners, heat the olive oil until hot but not smoking. Add the meat and cook on all sides until very well browned, working in batches if necessary. Remove the meat and allow to drain on a stack of paper towels.
  4. Pour the beer into the pan, scraping to deglaze the bottom, turn off heat. Add the water, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, and smoked paprika. Add the meat back in the pot.
  5. Bake uncovered at 325 until falling apart, about 3-4 hours. Pull into bite sized pieces using a fork.
  6. Add a pizza stone to the oven, increase heat to 425.
  7. In a food processor add the black beans, olive oil and chipotle pepper, process until well combined.
  8. On a lightly floured surface roll out the pizza dough, transfer to a pizza peel that has been well covered with corn meal.
  9. Spread the black bean puree over the pizza in an even layer.
  10. Top with cheese, then carnitas (you will have more than enough, save the remaining meat). Transfer to the pizza stone, bake at 425 until the crust is golden brown, about 12-15 minutes.
  11. Remove from oven, top with tomatoes, cilantro and crema.
https://domesticfits.com/beer-carnitas-pizza/

Adapted from David Leovitz Carnitas, and Spike Mendelsohn Mexican Pizza

Beer carnitas pizza2

Stout Braised Pulled Pork Chili

Stout Pulled Pork Chili

If you want to watch a culinary sports crowd get rilled up, ask what the "right way to make chili" really is. Just meat? Beans? No beans? Pork, vegetables, beef? Tomatoes? Because if you do it "wrong" you might was well be at  Morton’s and ask for ketchup with your steak. Or waltz yourself in the kitchen of a southern Grandma and boss her biscuit making ways around: you might get yourself punched.

I happen to be a bit more of a wandering chili Gypsy, the only requirement that I see necessary is a kick of heat. Some days I want beans, some days I want to pack it full of pork, chipotle stout, hold the beans and top it with pork rinds.

Regardless of your "right" way to make chili, I hope your take away from this recipe is that the braising liquid, what is left after a pork shoulder simmers in beer for 4 hours, is the perfect liquid to use in chili. It’s packed with flavor, beer, broth, spices, and meaty goodness. Don’t wash it down the drain, strain it and save it for making soup and chili. Even freezing it if you have to.

It’s like a free secret ingredient, even if you still have to fight with your brother in law about why you want to add beans.

Stout Pulled Pork Chili 2

Stout Braised Pulled Pork Chili

Ingredients

    For the Pork
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tbs salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2.5-3 lb pork butt (pork shoulder)
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 24 ounces stout beer (or porter)
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • For the Chili
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
  • 3-4 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced
  • 2 tsp adobo sauce from chipotle can
  • Garnish:
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • ½ cup red onion, chopped
  • 1 large tomato, chopped

Directions

  1. In a small bowl stir together the brown sugar, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and cayenne pepper.
  2. Sprinkle pork on all sides with spice mixture.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven until hot but not smoking. Sear pork on all sides until browned.
  4. Pour the beer and beef stock over the pork.. Reduce heat to a low simmer. Add a lid at a vent and allow to cook until pork is very tender and shreds easily, about 4 hours. Remove from the pot, shred using two forks, return to the pot and allow to simmer for 5-10 minutes. Remove meat from the pot with a slotted spoon to drain off excess moisture (reserve braising liquid).
  5. In a separate pot heat 2 tbs olive oil, cook the onions and red pepper until soft, about 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic. Add 1 ½ cups of the pork braising liquid, black beans, kidney beans, tomatoes, chipotle pepper and adobo sauce. Simmer for 20 minutes.
  6. Serve topped with cheddar, cilantro, red onion, tomatoes and pulled pork.
https://domesticfits.com/stout-braised-pulled-pork-chili/

Stout Pulled Pork Chili 3

 

Mediterranean Beer Braised Pork Burgers

Beer Braised Pork Burgers2

We could never manage to get ourselves through an entire conversation about cooking with beer without talking about meat. Sure, the magical leavening powers of beer give bread that awesome texture, and after making a chocolate stout cake none of my cakes will ever be sober again, but meat is where it all begins.

There is no hard data on the inception of beer cooking, but my educated guess leans me towards meat. Not just for the incedible meat tenderizing properties of beer, but also due to the fact that it’s a mild preservative, important in those pre-Frigidare days of trying to feed a crowd. These days, meat and beer just seem to have found a seamless connection, a perfect marriage that leads to the birth of outstanding crowd pleasing meals. This union is due in no small part to the fact that beer gives meat an amazingly tender texture while infusing it with a little bit of that beer flavor we all know and love.

So, what beer with what meat, you ask? Great question. Here are my recommendations:

Beef: Imperial Stout

Pork: Smoked Porter

Chicken & Turkey: Brown Ale

Fish: White Ale

 In my history of beer cooking, those are the pairings that have proven the most successful. Also, don’t forget to save some of that beer for drinking.

Beer Braised Pork Burgers

For this recipe I used my Homemade Beer Burger Buns, which was a fantastic idea.

Mediterranean Beer Braised Pork Burgers

Ingredients

    For the Meat:
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 3 lbs country style pork ribs
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 14.5 wt. oz. stewed tomatoes
  • 12 oz smoked porter
  • 1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • For the topping:
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbs dill, chopped
  • ½ cup red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 1 English cucumber, dices
  • 1 cup firm tomatoes, chopped
  • 8 Homemade Beer Burger Buns

Directions

  1. In a small bowl stir together the brown sugar, smoked paprika, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper and cumin.
  2. Sprinkle pork on all sides with spice mixture.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven until hot but not smoking. Sear pork on all sides, working in batches in necessary.
  4. Pour the stewed tomatoes and beer over the pork. Add the Worcestershire, onions and garlic. Reduce heat to a low simmer. Add a lid at a vent and allow to cook until pork is very tender and falling off the bone, about 4 hours. Shred using two forks, removing the bones from the pot. Remove meat from the pot with a slotted spoon to drain off excess moisture.
  5. To make the sauce, whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice, dill and red onion. Chill until ready to serve.
  6. Split the burger buns and fill with pork, top with cucumber, tomatoes and yogurt sauce.
https://domesticfits.com/mediterranean-beer-braised-pork-burgers/

Beer Braised Pork Burgers3

Hawaiian IPA Pineapple Pulled Pork Sliders

 Hawaiian IPA Pineapple Pulled Pork Sliders, made in a slow cooker

 I finally made friends with my slow cooker again. It took awhile, we haven’t been on speaking terms since that guy ruined several attempts at vegetarian chili earlier in the year. But he likes meat, that slow cooker, and so do I. I think this is the common ground that we’ll share. Slow and low is the best way to cook pork shoulder, making it a perfect slow cooker job. Although I loved the way this turned out, I do still vastly prefer my Le Creuset Dutch Oven, although that guy is much higher maintenance, he can’t be left alone like Slow Cooker can.

Speaking of IPA’s, I’ve been on the hunt for Schlafly’s American IPA, out of Missouri. I’m incredibly fortunate to live on the West Coat of these United States, a hot bed of fantastic IPA’s. I really don’t ever need to wander far to find incredible beer, but sometimes I just want to see what the rest of the USA has to offer. I’ve heard great things about this special release IPA and I want to get one in my pint glasses. If you can sneak me one, let me know, I’ll be forever grateful.

Hawaiian IPA Pineapple Pulled Pork Sliders, made in a slow cooker

Hawaiian IPA Pulled Pork Sliders

Ingredients

  • 4 cloves of garlic, rough chopped
  • ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 tsp sriracha
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 2 cup chopped pineapple
  • 3.5 lb pork shoulder
  • salt and pepper
  • 12 ounces IPA
  • 24 Hawaiian rolls, split
  • Yield: 24 sliders

Directions

  1. In a food processor or blender add the garlic, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, sriracha, brown sugar and pineapple. Process until well combined.
  2. Place the pork shoulder inside a slow cooker, salt and pepper all sides liberally.
  3. Pour the pineapple mixture and the IPA beer over the pork.
  4. Cook on low for 8 hours.
  5. Using two forks, shred while still in the slow cooker, discarding any large pieces of fat.
  6. Allow to marinate in the juices for about ten minutes, drain well. Serve inside split Hawaiian rolls.
https://domesticfits.com/hawaiian-ipa-pulled-pork-sliders/

Hawaiian IPA Pineapple Pulled Pork Sliders, made in a slow cooker

Chipotle Stout and Chorizo Chili Topped with Pork Rinds

 

I’m so glad I can share this recipe with you. I’ve been working like a crazy person to develop and test recipes that I fall in love with but I can’t share them with you because I need to save them for the cookbook.

And, of course, I’m putting a tremendous amount of pressure on myself to make each recipe a home run.

Because once you buy the book, and actually pay for the recipes, I want them all to be amazing. This, my friend, is a huge amount of pressure on me and the limits of my culinary creativity.


But then I get these crazy ideas, like putting crushed Chicharrones on top of chili and I can’t even wait to share it. I have to post it as soon as possible, even pushing back a more "seasonally appropriate" post because I want to show you this.

And Chorizo, with its spice and fatty goodness, is perfect in chili. In fact, I pretty much raided the "C" section of my local Mexican food market (there isn’t a "C" section, by the way, but there should be) to bring you a dish with chipotle, chorizo, chicharrones, cilantro, cheddar and cumin.

 And then I ate three bowls before I could even share it with anyone.

If I was planning on tailgating anytime soon, I would make this in huge vats.

And if you are a "beans in your chili" kind of guy, go ahead and throw some in, I won’t mind.

Or add some sour cream, if that’s your thing.

Chipotle Stout and Chorizo Chili Topped with Pork Rinds

Ingredients

  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • ½ white onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped, stem and seeds removed
  • 6 oz chorizo, raw, removed from casing
  • 1 lb ground beef chuck (80/20 lean to fat)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup Chipotle Stout
  • 14 oz stewed diced tomatoes (canned is fine)
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo (from can), minced plus more if desired
  • 1 tsp adobo sauce
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • Toppings:
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 cups Chicharrones (pork rinds), lightly crushed
  • (Makes 4-6 servings)

Directions

  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook until onion softens but isn’t browned, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the chorizo and beef, cook until meat starts to brown. Add the garlic and stir.
  3. Add the beer, diced tomatoes, one chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, smoked paprika, pepper, cumin and Worcestershire sauce. Allow to simmer for about 30 minutes, until thickened. Add additional chipotle peppers as desired to raise heat level.
  4. Pour into bowls, top with cilantro, cheddar and Chicharrones.
https://domesticfits.com/chipotle-stout-and-chorizo-chili-topped-with-pork-rinds/

 

 

 

IPA Marinated Citrus Pork Chops With Peach Poblano Salsa

A really well crafted IPA is a beautiful thing,but this is the style that is most often poorly done. The art of balancing a  hop forward beer delicately with its subtle back notes is an art that only a few persistent pros seem to be able to manage. The well crafted, well balanced IPA is an incredible art, that takes the dedication of a thoughtful and persistent brewer to really ace.

 I present to you Stone Ruination. It is a Masters level education on how to do the IPA right. Seek it out if you adore the Indian Pale Ale, or even if you tend to avoid it. That’s how you make an IPA.

IPA Marinated Citrus Pork Chops With Peach Poblano Salsa

For the Pork Chops:

1 cup IPA (Stone Ruination Preferred)

1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice

1 tsp salt

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp agave

1/2 tsp Sriracha

4 bone-in pork chops (about 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick)

3 tbs olive oil (plus additional if needed)

For the Salsa:

1 cup chopped fresh yellow peaches (about 1 large peach)

1 cup chopped red bell peppers, stem and seeds removed (about 1 medium sided pepper)

2/3 cup chopped poblano pepper, stem and seeds removed (about 1 large pepper)

2/3 cup chopped red onion (about 1/2 of 1 large onion)

1/4 cup chopped green onion

1/2 tsp salt

2 tbs IPA

1/4 tsp chili powder (add more for a spicier salsa)

 

In a large bowl or baking dish, combine the IPA, lemon juice, salt, agave, garlic and srirach, stir to combine. Add the pork chops, turning to coat. Place the bowl (or baking dish) in the refrigerator and allow to marinate for 30 minutes.

Add all of the salsa ingredients to a bowl and toss to combine.

In a pan over medium high heat, add the olive oil and allow to get hot but not smoking. Add the pork chops, cooking one or two at a time, don’t crowd the pan. Cook on each side for 3-4 minutes. You want them to still have a slight hint of pink still in the center, pork chops go from undercooked to overcooked really quickly, so keep a close eye on them.

Plate, and top with salsa. You will have more than enough salsa for the chops, serve the excess in a bowl with chips.

How To: Roll Cut and Stuff Pork Loin

This isn’t a recipe. Not really. It’s how to actually cut this sucker so you can stuff food inside of it. 

What you’ll need:

1.5 lb pork loin

Sharp knife

Kitchen twine

Whatever you are going to stuff your pork with

Bread crumbs

Baking dish



Preheat oven to 375. 

Place your pork loin on a cutting surface. This is a basic diagram of where you will be cutting. 

Start cutting closest to the cutting board, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch above the bottom of the loin

Don’t cut through, stop with about 1/2 inch to go. Then open the loin like a book that you are about 3/4 of the way through, with more pages on the left than the right. 

Make your final cut, bisecting the thicker side of the loin.

 Open the final flap. 

I like to trim off the uneven front and back, making it cleaner and easy to stuff

Stuff your pork with your stuffing. Need some suggestions? I’m here to help you. 

Here is a gorgeous loin from the beautiful and fabulous Elizabeth of Guilty Kitchen. Click on her pork loin picture to take you to her recipe, featuring bacon, feta and spinach. 

Here is another one from Bellalimento, featuring spinach, sun dried tomatoes and mushrooms, click on the picture for the recipe.

OK, now that we are back from those gorgeous blogs, we can continue. 

fill your open pork loin with your desired filling, leaving about 1/2 inch on all sides. 

My filling is just a simple olive oil, garlic, spinach, gorgonzola and bread crumbs. 

Starting at the side closest to you, roll the pork tightly. 

Once that is rolled, cut about 2 feet of kitchen twine. 

Tie one end of the twine tightly around one end of the loin. 

Place the long end of the twine about two inches down the top, center of the loin. Securing the two inch line in place with your thumb, bring the rest of the twine underneath the loin. 

Bring the kitchen twine back underneath the twine elbow you just created and pull tightly. 

Continue this process two of three more times down the length of the loin until you reach the end. Secure tightly at the far end. 

Roll the loin in bread crumbs and bake at for 30-40 minutes of until the internal temp is about 160. You still want a slight hint of pink in the center of the loin. 

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Beer Braised Pulled Pork

There is nothing new about braising with beer. In fact,  it should be the standard. Beer, as with all alcohol, is a natural meat tenderizer but it’s the flavors of the beer that make for braise meat that has a truly special taste. Craft brews are known for more intense flavor profiles and will always produce a vastly superior product when cooking than a macro brew. Craft beer is truly that, a craft. I have had a soft spot for Rogue brewery for years. Rogue is beer lovers beer, and dedicated to the art of the craft. Actual real life people making really good beer. If you live on the West Coast, this Portland Oregon brewery’s beer is probably at your local grocery store. It’s one of the few great craft beers that I have a very easy time getting my hands on.

What does braising mean? What a good question. Braising just means to sear meat at a very high heat and then cook it slowly at a low heat until cooked through. I used another amazing craft beer for this recipe. Rogue’s Chipolte Ale:

 

Beer Braised Pulled Pork

Ingredients

  • 1 tbs kosher salt
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tbs onion powder
  • 1 tbs chili powder
  • 1 tbs ground cumin
  • 1 tbs black pepper
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp dry mustard powder
  • 3.5 lb Pork butt (It’s acctually the pigs shoulder, and sometimes called that. The actual butt is called Ham.)
  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 cups Chipotle ale, or smoked porter (I used Rogue’s Chipotle Ale)

Directions

  1. In a small bowl stir together the salt, brown sugar onion powder, chili powder, cumin, pepper, smoked paprika and mustard powder together until combined, set aside.
  2. Take out your pork and stab 6, 2 inch deep holes fairly evenly spaced through the meat. Push a clove of garlic into each hole until no longer visible.
  3. Rub the entire surface of the meat with the spice mixture, using it all.
  4. In a large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil until very hot. Sear all surfaces of the meat, even the sides, until browned. The entire process will probably take about 10-15 minutes.Pour the beer over the meat, cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours, turning the meat over about every 30 minutes, until the meat is tender and falling apart.
  5. Once the meat is finished, remove from the pot and allow to cool. Use two forks to shred into pieces. Return to the braising liquid and allow to simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove the meat from the pot and discard the liquid.
https://domesticfits.com/beer-braised-pulled-pork/

 

 

I used this meat in three ways, on italian bread as a delicious sandwich, over rice and beans, and in a burrito. Other ideas for pulled pork include:

Pulled pork nachos

Pulled pork sliders

Pulled pork tacos

Pulled pork enchiladas

Pulled pork flatbread pizza

Pulled pork hand pies

Seriously, you could go all Bubba Gump about this and it would be endless. There is no shortage of uses for Pulled Pork.

 


Oktoberfest Recipe: Beer Braised Pulled Pork

My favorite thing about pulled pork is that it takes a long time. You didn’t read that wrong, I LIKE that it takes hours. Probably because I tend to over-committ myself, double book myself, take on too much, then feel guilty that I am not able to give 100% to everything and I need to remember to slow down. I work full time, I have this blog that I love more that anyone will know, I write for Honest Cooking, and for the Glendale Examiner, AND I am a mom. When I have decided to make a recipe like pulled pork I HAVE to stay home, play in the backyard with Tater, ignore my phone and listen to excessive amounts of Led Zeppelin. I need to make pulled pork more often.

What does braising mean? What a good question. Braising just means to sear meat at a very high heat and then cook it slowly at a low heat until cooked through. I used another amazing craft beer for this recipe. Rouge’s Chipolte Ale:

I have had a soft spot for Rouge brewery for years. Rouge is beer lovers beer, and dedicated to the art of the craft. Actual real life people making really good beer. If you live on the West Coast, this Portland Oregon brewery’s beer is probably at your local grocery store. It’s one of the few great craft beers that I have a fairly easy time getting my hands on. In fact, the very first time I decided to cook with beer (I made a chocolate beer cake), I used Rouge’s Chocolate Stout. I do believe that I owe Rouge for my fascination with cooking with beer.

Thank you Rouge, you’re Pulled Pork thank you card is in the mail.

Get the recipe on my other blog, The Beeroness!

Get the recipe on my other blog, The Beeroness!

I used this meat in three ways, on italian bread as a delicious sandwich, over rice and beans, and in a burrito. Other ideas for pulled pork include:

Pulled pork nachos

Pulled pork sliders

Pulled pork tacos

Pulled pork enchiladas

Pulled pork flatbread pizza

Pulled pork hand pies

Seriously, you could go all Bubba Gump about this and it would be endless. There is no shortage of uses for Pulled Pork.

My message of the day is this:

Slow down, eat good SLOW food, Drink great beer and don’t forget to play in the back yard with your daughter while listening to Over The Hills an Far Away (OK, maybe that last one was just for me).

Mushroom Pork Hand Pies


 

I could eat pie every day. I love it. It’s my First Love when it comes to desserts and cooking in general. I could have an All Pies blog ("Pie Fits"??) and be perfectly happy. When I was a kid, I didn’t want birthday cake (gasp!!!) I wanted birthday pie. Usually Apple. Not enough people eat savory pie and I want to change that. Hand pies, empanadas and anything else small, savory and portable, should be right there among the sandwich masses. This recipe is easy, and the dough is based off a pie dough, but with a few alterations to make it more like an empanada, and it really is easy and quick. Also, a prefect lunch to pack for a picnic or a hike.

Get moving, eat pie.

Mushroom Pork Hand Pies

For The Dough:

2 1/4 cup flour

1 tsp salt

10 tbs butter, cold, cut into cubes

1 egg

1/3 cup ice water

For The Filling:

2 tbs olive oil (plus more as needed)

1/4 cup onioins, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped

1 cup ground pork (you can sub turkey or chicken as well)

1 cup tomatoes, chopped

1/2 cup roasted red bell peppers, chopped

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp chili powder

For The Top of Dough:

1/4 cup melted butter

pinch of salt

Put 1 1/2 cups of flour and the salt in a food processor, pulse for a second to combine. Add the butter and process until combined. Add the remaining flour and process again. Move to a bowl. In a small bowl, beat the egg and water together until well combined then add the egg/water to the dough with a wooden spoon. If you add the water and egg with the food processor, your dough will turn out crispy and cracker like.

Form into a disk, cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.

Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until opaque, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and the mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms are soft, adding a little more oil if the pan gets dry. Add the remaining filling ingredients and cook until warm and combined, about 3 minutes. Allow to cool.

Once the dough is chilled, roll out on a flat surface and cut into sections that are 6 inches by 8 inches. Add 1/4 cup of the filling to one end of the strip, keeping at least an inch between the filling and the edges.

Fold the empty half over the filling and press the edges until secure.

Transfer to a baking sheet (sprayed with cooking spray or covered with parchment paper to prevent sticking).

Repeat until all the dough and filling are used. Brush the tops of the pies with melted butter and sprinkle with a little salt.

Should make between 8 and 10 pies.

Bake at 400 for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.