Middle of the Week, Running around like Crazy, Dinner!!!

Seared Pork Chops with Spinach and Fresh Herbs

Seared Pork Chops with Spinach and Fresh Herbs

Middle of the Week, Running around like crazy, Dinner!!!

Pan Seared Pork Chops with Lemon and Rosemary With a Side of Seared Spinach and Pasta

Is anyone else like me???…  It’s the middle of the week, school has started back, last minute school supplies, signing up for this and that, just getting back into the routine in general, and you need a quick, middle of the week dinner.  Here is your answer!  If you have everything on hand, this entire meal should only take about 30 minutes from start to finish…  And it is so healthy and delicious that you’ll probably find yourself doing this one often.  I usually always have some already cooked, leftover pasta in my refrigerator, whether it be angel hair, spaghetti, linguine…whatever you have!  And if you don’t have leftover…  just cook a box of pasta!  I am also going to plug this one in here…  I have mentioned a time or two that we like to eat “somewhat” low carb…  However, I DO LOVE pasta!  And most of the low carb garb out there is pretty nasty.  I use Dreamfields Pasta in all of my pasta dishes and you honestly can not tell the difference.  It is a high fiber pasta with only 5 grams of digestible carbohydrates!  And it tastes great!  Cook or prepare the pasta before you cook the pork chops so that it is already done and you’re not waiting on it at the last minute.   So, now that I have said that…  lets cook dinner!!!

Pasta Side

Ingredients List:

Cooked pasta of your choice

1/4 cup olive oil

Juice of a lemon

Kosher salt to taste

Cracked black pepper to taste

about a tsp of garlic powder

pinch of red pepper flakes

3 – 4 green onions, chopped

Put the cooked pasta into a medium skillet over low/med heat.  Add in the remaining ingredients and mix well making sure that the pasta is coated with all of the seasonings.  Taste to see if you need to add any salt or pepper.  Set aside until ready to eat.  Now, time to cook the chops!!!

Pan Seared Pork Chops with Lemon and Rosemary

Ingredients List:

Olive oil spray

6 – Thick cut boneless pork chops

Olive oil

Balsamic Vinegar

Kosher Salt

Coarse ground black pepper

garlic powder

1/2 cup white

1/2 cup chicken stock

2 lemons, sliced very thin

6 sprigs of fresh rosemary cut in half

Put the chops on a baking sheet or platter to season.  Drizzle all sides with olive oil and balsamic, coating well.  Season all sides with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Let them sit out while your oven is preheating so they are more room temperature when you get ready to cook them.

Spray a 13” cast iron skillet with olive oil spray.  Put it in a cold oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  When the oven has preheated, remove it to the stove top and turn the burner to high.  Add the chops and let them sear for 3 minutes.  (Hang on to all of the oil/balsamic/seasoning on the pan you used to season the pork chops.  We are going to use it in just a minute.)  No need to move them around…  just let them sear.  After 3 minutes, flip them over, add the “extra” seasonings that were left on the pan, just drizzle it all over the top of the chops.  Now, let them sear another 3 minutes.  While they are searing, top each one with a several slices of lemon and a sprig of rosemary.  Toss the remaining lemon slices and rosemary sprigs into the pan.  When there is one minute left on the timer, pour in the 1/2 cup of wine.  Just before putting them back in the oven, pour in the chicken stock.  Put the skillet back into the 325 degree oven.  Let them cook for 5 minutes.  Take them out and let them rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Now that the pasta is ready and the chops are resting…  sear the spinach.

Seared Spinach

Ingredients List:

2 – bags of fresh spinach

olive oil

kosher salt


First of all, set a colander in a bowl so that you can drain the spinach after you sear it. The spinach creates a lot of liquid and will ooze all over your plate.  You are also going to do this in batches.  Its hard to get all the spinach in one pan all at once.

Heat about 2 TBS of olive oil in a medium skillet over med/high heat.  Once it has heated,  add a couple of handfuls of spinach.  Using tongs, quickly turn the spinach until it starts to wilt.  Give it a light sprinkle of salt (don’t over do it).  Once it starts to wilt, transfer it to the colander to drain.  Don’t worry if there are some leaves that have not wilted.  They will continue to wilt down in the colander.  Add more olive oil to the skillet and continue to do this in batches until all of the spinach is cooked.  Taste it and see if you need to add any more salt.  That’s all there is to it!

The chops should be rested by now…  Plate it up and enjoy a wonderful meal!!!

Roasted Peppers & Garlic with Fresh Herbs

Roasted Peppers with Garlic and Fresh Herbs

Roasted Peppers with Garlic and Fresh Herbs

Oven Roasted Peppers with Fresh Herbs


This is almost too simple to post as a recipe.  However, I can’t tell you the number of times that people say, “Really?” when I tell them about roasting peppers.  They have the best flavor and I could truly eat the entire platter of peppers by myself.  We eat these as a side to any meat but I also use them to make roasted pepper spread.  You can control the heat by simply choosing peppers that have a milder flavor.  I happen to like the heat so I use more hot then mild.

Ingredients List:

6 – lg. jalapeno peppers

6-  lg. hot banana peppers

3-  lg. aneheim peppers

4 – lg. giant marconi peppers (these are mild)

1/2 – purple onion, sliced thin

2 – garlic pods, cut in half.  Leave the skin on.  It helps keep all the little toes together.

3 – large sprigs fresh rosemary

8 – large sprigs of fresh thyme

Olive oil spray

1/4 cup olive oil

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 coarse ground black pepper


Cooking instructions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.  Spray the foil with olive oil spray.  Cut the stems off all the peppers.  Cut the peppers in half lengthwise.  Remove the seeds and veins from the insides of the peppers.  Be sure to get that vein!  The seeds and the veins are where most of the heat comes from. By removing them, you still get a great flavor with some heat without it being overwhelming.      Roughly, cut the rosemary and thyme into big pieces.  Place the peppers, sliced onion, and herbs onto the lined baking sheet.  Drizzle with the olive oil.  Sprinkle on salt and pepper.  Give it all several tosses making sure you coat everything well.  Rub the cut side of the garlic pods with olive oil, salt and pepper and place in the center of the baking sheet, cut side up.  Place the baking sheet into the preheated oven for 20 minutes.  Rotate the pan and let them cook for another 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and enjoy them as a great side or use them to make the roasted pepper spread.  See recipe in appetizers.