Baked Pork Chops

This is a simple healthy recipe and it's perfect for a busy work week...
it's also very comforting on a cold rainy day!

You'll Need -

Boneless Pork Chops
Healthy Request Cream of Chicken Soup
Garlic Powder
Salt and Pepper

Start by seasoning your pork chops. Sprinkle both sides with garlic powder, salt & pepper. Place them in a greased baking dish and top with the cream of chicken soup.


Bake at 350. Cook time will depend on how thick your chops are but it should be between 30 - 45 minutes. The internal temp will be 145 when they are done!

The chicken soup turns into a guilt free gravy that's wonderful on roasted potatoes or a baked potato. If you want to make this comforting dish even lighter, serve the pork with a side of peas or broccoli.

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Zokos City Harvest Potluck

This past weekend I participated in the Zokos City Harvest Potluck...

Zokos, a new online party planning site, teamed up with local food bloggers and beverage sponsors to throw a potluck benefit for New York's City Harvest...

City Harvest is an awesome organization here in NYC that's mission is to end hunger in communities throughout New York City. This year, City Harvest will collect more than 38 million pounds of excess food from all segments of the food industry, including restaurants, grocers, corporate cafeterias, manufacturers, and farms. This food is then delivered free of charge to some 600 community food programs throughout New York City by a fleet of trucks and bikes. City Harvest helps feed the more than one million New Yorkers that face hunger each year. 

For a $20 donation guests enjoyed delicious treats from food bloggers...RendezfoodsJustcook NYC, My Big Fat MouthThe Gay Gourmet, Dorm Room Dinner , Chip Chip Hooray, The Feisty Foodie, and many others! Oh...and me...I made Dijon Tortellini!

The food offerings were washed down with liquid refreshments provided by Vinport, Brooklyn Brewery, and RedJacket Juice! 

There was even a vote for best dish, the winner receiving a set of Anolon Nouvelle Copper Skillets! 

Congratulations to....

Although I didn't take home the bragging rights, or the Anolon Cookware, I did get an awesome gift bag filled with goodies from Kerrygold Cheese, Sustainable Sourcing/HimalaSalt, Peanut Butter & Company, Roland Foods, Fairytale Brownies, Anolon Cookware, Red Jacket Juice, Tipping Point Partners, the GRACE Foundation, Built NY, and Earnest Eats...

Over 70 people were in attendance and we collectively raised more than a $1,000 dollars for City Harvest! It was an evening filled with great food and great people for a great cause...Thanks to Zokos and their sponsors for all of the fun! It was a pleasure cooking for you all! 

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Southwest Stuffed Peppers

You'll Need - 

1 package of ground turkey (or beef if you prefer)
2 – 4 bell peppers
1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
1.5 cups of salsa
1 cup of frozen corn
1 tablespoon of cumin (can vary depending how smoky you want it)
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper
hot sauce (to taste)
salt & pepper (to taste)
light shredded cheese

Start by washing the peppers and then cutting off the top with the stem. Spoon out the insides and set them aside.


Next, brown the ground turkey in a sauté pan and season with garlic powder, cumin, pepper flakes and salt and pepper. Add in the beans, salsa and corn and warm through. 

Season with hot sauce and sprinkle with a little bit of cheese to bind everything together. 

Stuff each pepper full of the turkey mix and bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. 

Top each pepper with cheese and pop back in the oven until cheese is melted.

I made two peppers packed FULL and still and had a lot of the filling left over. You could definitely  stretch it to 4 peppers! If you’re running a little short just add in a little extra corn and salsa! 

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Five Lamps Tavern

Five Lamps Tavern is a new addition to the upper west side and a good addition it is.
Not only do they have amazing burgers, they have a 75 seat beer garden in the back - yay!  

The first night we visited, it was packed but we managed to find seats at the bar (it was a little chilly for outdoor seating). We ordered a couple of beers and looked over the menu, which is pretty small but also understandable for a brand new restaurant. Hopefully they'll expand the menu as they mature. 

My husband ordered the classic burger...and loved it. The fries were awesome too! 

Brooklyn Blend, soft lettuce, tomato, red onion, house rémoulade.  
Served with IPA Fries

The first thing on the menu that caught my eye was the grilled salmon BLT...grilled salmon fillet, bacon, romaine, tomato, toasted fennel rémoulade, country bread, served with IPA fries. I must not have been alone, because by the time we put our order in they were sold out of the salmon. 

In a spur of the moment decision I went with the 5LT ended up being an excellent choice! 

12 oz cajun-crusted, house blend with 
slab bacon & Roquefort, lettuce, tomato, red onion. 
Served with IPA Fries

I LOVED this burger!  It's right up there with my all time favorites. 

Still in first place is Rocky's in San Diego... 

Rocky's Burger

The 5LT burger is definitely a stand out and one of the best burgers I've had in a long time! The bacon and roquefort are mixed into the patty and they add such an amazing difference to the burger. I like my burgers looks pretty pink in the picture but it was done perfectly and so juicy that the bottom bun didn't hold up to the challenge. 

Last weekend we went back to Five Lamps for brunch and everyone had the classic burger (unfortunately the 5LT isn't on the brunch menu, and they wouldn't make the We had a great time and the food was excellent, again. 

We'll certainly be back for many more enjoyable experiences at Five Lamps, and maybe next time I'll try something other than a burger! 

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Burrito Pie

I came across this recipe while looking for new ideas for Taco Tuesday 
and decided to give it a try and lighten it up a bit!

It turned out pretty darn good!

You’ll Need –

1 package of taco sauce (I used a leftover one from a taco kit) 
1 cup water
1 small can tomato paste
1 garlic clove, minced
salt & pepper to taste
1.5 pounds ground beef  (90/10)
3 flour tortillas (I love Tumaro's brand low carb multigrain tortillas) 
2 cups (1 bag) shredded light mexican cheese blend
1 can refried beans (warmed)
Garnish with - chopped jalapeno and scallions (optional)

Start by adding the first 6 items into a saucepan and simmer for 15-20 minutes. While your sauce is simmering, brown the ground beef. Stir in one third of the sauce.  Add another third to the bottom of a greased baking dish.

Place one tortilla on top of the sauce, (if you need to tear it to fit bottom of pan, that’s fine). Next,  top that tortilla with half of the meat mixture and cover with a third of your cheese.

Add another tortilla and cover it with the refried beans then remaining meat. Sprinkle another third of your cheese on top. Layer on the last tortilla and top with the last bit of your sauce. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 35-40 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting. Garnish with chopped jalapeno and scallions if desired.

The original version had 8-10 servings each with:
578 calories, 25 g fat, 46 g carbohydrate, 11 g fiber and 35 g protein.

My lightened up version with 6 servings clocks in around:
 370 calories, 15 g fat, 17 g carbohydrate, 8 g fiber and 36 g protein.

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Co Ba

Co ba is a cute Vietnamese restaurant in Chelsea. The menu is inspired by traditional Vietnamese food stalls which in Vietnam are called Co Bas.

The menu is fairly limited but then again, so is my knowledge of Vietnamese food! 99% of my Vietnamese food consumption is alongside one of my best friends Vicky, who is in fact Vietnamese and has the same taste buds I do...I always trust her to point me in the right direction!

This occasion we were celebrating Vicky's upcoming trip to Vietnam and decided to meet up at Co Ba for brunch!

The brunch menu features three hearty combo meals with *UNLIMITED* Mimosa, Bloody Marry, Lychee Bellini, Vodka kumquat limeade Or House limeade(non alcohol) and coffee or tea for $21.95!

Includes choice of vegetarian or poached shrimp soft rolls,
mixed greens, fried egg, and jasmine rice and choose one Com meal (beef, chicken or tofu)

Includes tofu tamarind soup, mixed greens salad w/sesame soy dressing,
fried seafood dumplings, and choice of sandwich

Includes bowl of rice stick noodles in oxtail broth served with sliced sirloin,
bean sprouts, fresh herbs, side of mixed green salad w/sesame soy dressing
and choice of sandwich

Vicky ordered Combo A with the Cơm BÒ LÚC LC which was sweet soy & sake marinated beef sirloin and onion served over jasmine with vegetarian soft rolls, mixed greens and fried eggs on the side. She loved it!

I was craving Pho and ordered off of the regular lunch menu. I went with the Pho Ba which was rice sticks in an oxtail broth served with sliced sirloin,bean sprouts,and fresh herbs...

It was so good! And anyone who knows me (from this blog or otherwise) knows that I Iike my food EXTRA SPICY! Every few spoonfuls I added a little bit more chili pepper sauce until it was just on the edge of blowing my head off! Some might call me crazy but I love it! 

The hot pepper sauce drastically changed the color of my broth...ha! 

The dinner menu has a much larger selection and is very reasonably priced (the most expensive dish is $20). I think when Vicky gets back from Vietnam we should head to Co Ba to look at her pictures and reminisce about her fabulous trip ;)  

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Jalapeno Stuffed Burgers

These burgers were ridiculously good! 

You'll Need - 

3/4lbs Ground Beef
1/4 Cup Sweet Yellow Onion, Chopped
1 Jalapeno,Chopped
Worcestershire Sauce
Salt & Pepper 

Heat up a small pan and add a little cooking spray. Add in the chopped onion and jalapeno and saute for about 3 minutes. 

Once the veggies have cooked down a little bit add them to the ground beef, along with about a teaspoon of worcestershire sauce and some salt & pepper.

Mix the beef well and form into patties... 

We only have an indoor grill and decided not to close the lid while cooking these...

They turned out super juicy...

Cut up your favorite toppings...

Pile them high...

And Enjoy! 

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Spicy Carolina Style Pulled Pork

  • My Carolina boy found this recipe online and insisted we try it.
  • He loves Eastern Carolina BBQ and anything spicy so we knew this was going to be a hit! 
  • I didn't like the idea of adding the fat or onions back into the meat so I skipped that step and it turned out amazing.

  • You'll Need - 

  • 3.5 lbs pork shoulder (original recipe called for 5lbs)
  • 2 red onions, quartered
  • 2 yellow onions, quartered

  • Rub:

  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

  • Sauce:

  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar 
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered cayenne pepper

  • Start by making the rub...Combine the brown sugar, paprika, salt and pepper, and rub the mixture over the roast and wrap it tightly in plastic. Refrigerate for at least a few hours but overnight is best.

    To make the sauce...combine the vinegar, worcestershire sauce, red pepper flakes, sugar, mustard, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper in a bowl and mix well.

    Next, place the quartered onions in the bottom of a crock pot. Place the (unwrapped) roast on top of onions and drizzle most of the vinegar mix over the roast. Save a little bit  to add to the shredded meat at the end.

    Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours, or high for 4 to 5 hours. (I actually cooked mine for 10 on low because that's what fit in with my work day!)

    When your meat is done cooking, remove it and the onions from the crockpot and transfer to a cutting board. Remove skin and fat from the pork. Using two forks pull and shred the pork and top with the remaining vinegar mixture if desired! 

    I served this with a side of cole slaw and corn on the cob! But the meat would make an excellent pulled pork sandwich as well!

    And lucky Truman enjoyed the pork bone...

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