Monday, October 29, 2012

Cooking up a not Sandy!

 I started with squash not pumpkin but squash!  You can use them just like pumpkin seeds just wash and clean off any squash material, spray a pan with some butter flavored oil, salt and bake at 300 degrees for 10-20 minutes or until golden brown.
I baked the squash after 400 degrees for 40-50 minutes or until a fork inserted pierces the skin easily.  I scrape out the flesh after cool and put in a container for using as a side dish throughout the week.
I made a recipe from a book I'm presently reading and it was perfect for a Fall dinner.  The recipe was Cider-braised pork loin with apples and onions.  I couldn't find a pork loin so I bought a pork butt roast instead and it was DELICIOUS!!!!  The best Fall dinner ever!  Here's the recipe compliments of Robin Mather, the author........

8 C cider
3 large apples
1 (3-5 pound) bone-in pork loin
2 onions, sliced
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper (freshly ground)
1/4 cup cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Pour the cider into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat.  Boil the cider until it reduces in volume by half, about 15 minutes.  Remove from the heat.
Core the apples, but do not peel.  Cut the apples into eighth's.  Put the pork in a Dutch oven or heavy pot.  Surround the pork with the apples and onions.  Sprinkle everything with the thyme, salt, and pepper.  Pour the reduced cider over all.
Bake the pork, uncovered, for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, basting once or twice with the cider, until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees F on a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the roast.  Transfer the pork, apples, and onions to a platter, cover and keep warm.
Place the Dutch oven over medium-high heat and bring the juices to a boil.  In a bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in a little cold water and whisk the mixture into the juices in the pot.  Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes.  Slice the roast and serve immediately, passing the sauce at the table. 
The picture above is just before I placed it in the oven.....I was so hungry when it finished cooking and salivating over the smell that I forgot to take a picture of the finished recipe!  I served it with brussles sprouts and the squash.   
This is the first time I am doing a review BEFORE I finished the book.........
Robin was living in Chicago, working for the Chicago Tribune and married but within several months her husband asked for a divorce and she lost her job.  She retreated to a cabin on a lake in Michigan and The Feast Nearby is her journey and since she was trying to be frugal she allowed herself only $40 per week for groceries.  Robin is a food writer so eating well was part of her life but her book shows how you can eat very well, healthily and locally within a budget!  She  is not only a great writer but her recipes are amazing, not complicated and not requiring complicated or hard to find ingredients.  She has recipes and instructions for making your own sauerkraut, hard cider and even roasting your own coffee beans!  I just started reading it and I look forward to it every night....I hope she keeps writing!
I will be praying for the people in the path of Sandy and blessings to all of you!  Stay safe!


  1. That book sounds fabulous - I'll go check out the Book Depository now.

  2. Sounds like a delicious recipe and as you can imagine I'm always after good healthy but tasty meals that don't cost the earth ! I think I'll work up my version of this to suit my family.

  3. I'm liking the sound of this book! I really should cook more. I don't mean I don't prepare food from fresh ingredients, but I never seem to have the energy to make more than really simple, straightforward things, often more snacks than meals.

    Thank you for your lovely comment over at my place, it was great to hear from you again :D

  4. What a wonderful recipe, and so perfect for Fall.
    I might just have to make this recipe for Sunday dinner.

    We too are keeping all those affected by the storms in our prayers.

  5. Thanks for sharing the recipe - sounds delicious! Maggie xx

  6. Oh Wowzers! I never thought to cook squash seeds...
    I normally skillet fry my pumpkin seeds in butter...hmmm, might have to give this a try using squash seeds..
    thanx for the tip!
    farmgirl hugz

  7. This recipe looks scrumptious and the author sounds like I would like this cookbook.

  8. I will have to look for this book. I hope all is well!

  9. This sounds yummy! I will look for the book. It's nice to try cooking something new for a change :) Thank you for your lovely comment over on my blog, it was a real treat to hear from you again.
    Take care!
    Helen x

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