“Life without love is like a tree without blossoms or fruit.” ~ Kahlil Gibran

I have spent the day taking down Christmas decorations – a job I loathe.  I’m thrilled when it’s done and my part is done, just waiting on the hubs to disassemble the trees and carry them upstairs.

That, spaghetti and finishing up the last few episodes of Downton Abbey (so we are ready for season 4 in January) will be the extent of our New Year’s Eve celebration.

Wild, I tell you. Wild.

Since we are just having good old sketti for dinner, I’ll give you the chutney recipe we had Christmas night to go with our Sage-Crusted Pork Racks (recipe coming later).  It was very, very good!

Pear Chutney

(adapted from Southern Living)

  • 5 ripe pears, peeled and diced
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 1/3 cup golden raisins
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cook pears in 2 Tbsp. hot olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes or until tender. Transfer to a bowl; wipe Dutch oven clean. Heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil in Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion; sauté 8 to 10 minutes or until tender. Add raisins, garlic, and ginger; sauté 5 minutes. Add sugar, cinnamon, cloves, and dried crushed red pepper, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute or until spices are fragrant. Stir in vinegar and maple syrup, and cook 3 to 5 minutes or until reduced by half. Stir in pears; cook, stirring constantly, 3-5 minutes. Stir in parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

Pearchutney

This paired perfectly with the pork!

-abp

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“Babies are bits of stardust, blown from the hand of God.” ~ Barretto

I am in LOVE with my baby girl!!!

Everyone said I would be but gosh she has to be the cutest thing i have ever seen!!! I could just sit and stare at her all day – and a lot of the time that’s what I do!!

Because of this, there has not been a whole lot of cooking going on in my house (much to my husbands dismay – although he’s too sweet to say anything!). But every now and then, I’ve surprised him and thrown something together like this crockpot meal.

Cashew Chicken

(adapted from Sally Cooks)

  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into smaller pieces
  • 1-2 cups frozen broccoli, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup water or chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup cashews

Place chicken and vegetables in crockpot. Mix together other ingredients except for water/chicken broth and cashews, pour over chicken and vegetables. Pour in water/chicken broth until covered.  Cook on low for 7-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.

Before serving, toast your cashews and stir into crockpot. Serve over rice.

photoI hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas!

New recipes from the Holidays coming soon!

-abp

“I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion” ~ Henry David Thoreau

Hello, it’s me again! Sorry I have been MIA but if you have read much of my blog lately you know I have a good reason! 🙂

Miss Elizabeth Louise Poore made her debut on Halloween – my little pumpkin baby!!

So, of course, it has been quite hectic around here but I wanted to throw a quick recipe out there for you.  It’s a very popular, easy party dip that I’m sure you have seen at a many of parties.

7 Layer Dip

  • 2 cans of refried beans with greens chilies
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup guacamole (I used premade)
  • shredded lettuce
  • shredded mexi-blend cheese
  • chopped tomatoes
  • chopped green onions (green part only)
  • tortilla chips

Spread beans evenly in a glass dish (9×11). Then layer the remaining indredients and serve with chips.

photo

Now how easy was that?? Easy enough for a mom with a 4 week old to make and take to an Iron Bowl party, but we are not going to talk about that. RTR anyway!

-abp