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French Onion Pork Chops

This marks recipe 350 on buenprovecho.me. At this point I have decided to end the blog, but it will remain accessible to my many followers. Thanks for following along all these years. Hopefully you’ve found a few that you enjoyed…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LX4EGvw5wP4&authuser=0

These were quite awesome, especially since we both love French Onion Soup! Fairly easy to make as well. This recipe serves four as indicated, but since I only wanted to do TWO chops, I halved all of the ingredients except the olive oil. I didn’t want the onions to BURN! As you can see by the photo, I served it with fresh roasted asparagus, adding some Parmesan cheese flakes a few minutes before they were done in the oven.

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FRENCH ONION PORK CHOPS

Serves: 4 Prep Time: 25 minutes Cook Time: 30 minutes

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 large sweet onions, sliced

7-8 fresh thyme sprigs (plus additional for garnish, if desired)

1 teaspoon salt (plus additional for the pork chops)

½ teaspoon pepper (plus additional for the pork chops)

1 tablespoon butter

3/4 cup beef stock (I use low-sodium)

¼ cup dry red wine

4 boneless pork chops (seasoned with salt and pepper)

4 teaspoons Dijon mustard

4 ounces shredded Swiss cheese

2 or 3 Baby Portobello mushrooms sliced

-Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

-In a large, oven proof skillet over medium heat, caramelize the onions in the olive oil along with the thyme sprigs (about 15 minutes), stirring occasionally. Add the beef broth, butter, salt and pepper. Five minutes before the onions are caramelized, add mushrooms.

-Simmer to reduce the broth (about 5 minutes).

-Remove the caramelized onions to a bowl and keep warm, Wipe out the skillet with a paper towel.

-Pat the chops with a paper towel to dry. Spread Dijon mustard on both sides of the chops and season each with salt and pepper to taste.

-Return the skillet to medium/high heat and brown the pork chops on both sides (approximately 3 minutes per side). Remove chops to a plate.

 

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Creamy Slow Cooker Chicken with Bacon and Cheese

Just another slow cooker recipe…LOL. This one tastes incredible AND its Keto friendly as part of my new JOURNEY to eat healthier this year. As always I was touring around Pinterest and came across this one by Kasey Trenum. It was so great I forgot to photograph it. It was on Kasey’s Pinterest page.

 

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Creamy Slow Cooker Chicken with Bacon & Cheese {low carb & keto}

Ingredients

  • 4-6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ½ tsp poultry seasoning
  • ½ tsp rosemary
  • ¼ tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • ¾ cup chicken broth
  • 3 pieces of cooked bacon, crumbled
  • cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 oz. cream cheese
  • 1 cup cheese
  • 3 pieces of bacon, crumbled
  • ¾ tsp Xanthan Gum (for thickening – available at higher end grocery stores)
  • salt/pepper to taste

 

Instructions

Add chicken and next 6 ingredients to slow cooker.

Crumble 3 pieces of cooked bacon on the top of the chicken.

Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 3 to 3½. (Watch your cooker – it was done sooner than I expected)

Add heavy whipping cream to slow cooker.

Dollop cream cheese on top and stir to combine all ingredients.

Using 2 forks, shred chicken in slow cooker.

Sprinkle ¾ tsp Xanthan Gum and allow to simmer with the top off for a few minutes while the mixture thickens.

Spray a casserole dish generously and dump contents of slow cooker into dish.

Add 1 cup of cheddar cheese (or more if you’d like) then crumble 3 pieces of bacon on top.

Place in oven on broil for 2-4 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly and bacon is extra crisp.

Enjoy!

Nutritional Information based on MyFitnessPal app (8 servings) – Calories 302, Fat 24.7, Protein 17.2, Carbs 3.3 -Fiber .8 = Net Carbs 2.5

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Baby its cold outside (in the North, actually here in Mexico too, trust me on this one…). Great time for a hearty chowder – vegan if you leave out the bacon!

It calls for a whole head of cauliflower, but here we can but 1 lb. packages of florets which simplifies the recipe. I think you’ll really like this one my friends…great start to the New Year!

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Creamy cauliflower chowder

Prep Time: 10 minutes         Cook Time: 30 minutes       Yield: 4-5 people

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder is a healthy, easy, comfort food recipe and ready in under 30 minutes. It’s gluten free, low carb and keto friendly.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup diced Onion
  • 5 Garlic Cloves (minced)
  • 1/2 cup diced Carrots
  • 1 Whole Head of Cauliflower (cut into small florets)I bought a one lb. bag of florets
  • 1 1/2 cups Vegetable Broth
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground Pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Oregano
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese
  • Salt to taste

Olive Oil and cooked bacon (4 strips) for topping

 Instructions

In a Dutch oven or soup pot, heat butter and add onions and garlic. Saute for a few minutes until the onions are soft.

Add carrots, cauliflower, vegetable broth, pepper, oregano and salt to the pot. Bring this to a boil, and slow the heat down to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes or so till the cauliflower is tender.

Switch off the flame and using a blender, blend the soup partly in the soup pot. If you don’t have a hand blender, pour half the soup into a blender and pulse a few tips till creamy.

Switch the flame back on and add a cup of water or broth along with the cream cheese. Simmer for 5-10 minutes and switch off the flame. Feel free to thin the soup further if  you like with some more broth or milk. Top with olive oil and bacon and serve hot.

Steamed Mussels in a Coconut Curry Broth

Its not too late to do your Nw Years Eve shopping is it? Your guests would love these coconut curry mussels with fresh baguettes for dipping into the sauce. If you need a veggie dish, go for the steamed broccoli…

 

Mussels

STEAMED MUSSELS IN A COCONUT CURRY BROTH

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2.5 pounds mussels (I prefer Prince Edward Island mussels)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 1 (14-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk (lite version is fine too – just won’t be as rich)
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium chicken (or seafood) stock
  • 2 green onions, sliced

baguettes or bread for serving (or fries!) 

DIRECTIONS:

Keep the mussels refrigerated until you’re ready to use. Once ready, place them in a large bowl of ice cold water. Scrub the outsides of the mussels and remove the string (or “beard”) by using a towel or paper towel to pull it out. Discard any mussels that have opened already. Keep the mussels in the ice water.

Better still, buy the frozen ones which are already cleaned..just add them in where required in the recipe.

Heat a large skillet or wok over medium heat and add the butter and olive oil. Once it’s melted, stir in the onions, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir and cook for 5 minutes, until slightly softened. Stir in the curry paste and continue to stir until it’s distributed throughout the entire pan of onions. Cook for 5 more minutes. Stir in the coconut milk and stock, stirring until it’s smooth. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring continuously. Reduce the heat to medium low. Add the mussels and toss. Cover the skillet and cook just until the mussels open, about 5 to 6 minutes. Garnish with the sliced green onions. Stir the mussels well so the broth makes it into the shells. Serve immediately with baguettes or thin fries.

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Garlic Parmesan Cauliflower Rice

New diet equals new foods! Just in at Costco – Cauliflower Rice! Pinterest has recipes for almost everything…shown here with roasted peppers, grilled salmon and avocado salsa. Supposedly all Keto friendly.

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Garlic Parmesan Cauliflower Rice

Cauliflower “rice” is now widely available in many supermarkets, including Costco Merida. There are many different recipes for using it, but this one is very simple!
Ingredients
5 cups cauliflower rice
3 T butter
3 garlic cloves minced
7 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp. EVOV (Extra virgin olive oil OR coconut oil)
Chopped parsley
Directions
In a small saucepan, combine butter and garlic, stirring constantly for 2 to 3 minutes. Don’t let it burn!
In a separate fry pan, skillet or wok add 1 Tbsp. EVOV (Extra Virgin Olive oil OR coconut oil). Medium heat. Stir in the cauliflower rice and continue stirring until it is warmed through.
Pour I the butter mixture and stir to blend.
Top with the shredded Parmesan and mix well. Add chopped parsley! SERVE.
Instead of the butter and cheese, try pesto sauce…OR cilantro and lime…

 

Cheesy Ranch Chicken and Broccoli Bake (KETO)

Alas, we have succumbed to the Keto Diet which requires us to eat very few carbs, lots of protein, veggies and some fruits. Beginning today you will see Keto friendly recipes. This is not to say they aren’t tasty!! I am a novice here and still in the early stages of figuring out what is good and bad. Help me!! If I post a recipe which you know is not KETO please let me know. I need your help… You know if I post it, it must have at least tasted good…LOL. Here we go….

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Cheesy Ranch Chicken & Broccoli {Keto & Low Carb Friendly}
Ingredients
• 2 cups cooked chicken breast (3 small breasts)
• 2 tablespoon of butter
• ½ pack ranch seasoning mix (see below )
• 4 oz. cream cheese, softened.
• ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
• Broccoli (Costco pieces – steamed
• ⅔ cup chicken broth
• ¼ cup crumbled bacon
• ½ cup cheese
For the Topping
• 2 cups cheese
• ½ cup crumbled bacon
Instructions
1. Kasey* cooked her chicken first in a slow cooker on high for 3.5 hrs. (Boiled mine for 10 minutes)
2. Remove from slow cooker (or the pot) and shred.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
4. In an oven-safe skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter.
5. Add ranch seasoning, cream cheese, heavy whipping cream, chicken broth, ¼ cup crumbled bacon and ½ cup cheese.
6. Use a whisk to combine ingredients and cook on low for 5 minutes.
7. Steam broccoli in the microwave while the ranch mixture is cooking.
8. Add chicken and cooked broccoli to ranch mixture and stir to combine.
9. Sprinkle 2 cups cheese and ½ cup crumbled bacon on top.
10. Cook in oven for 25 minutes then move to top rack.
11. Cook on broil 2-3 minutes until cheese is bubbly and bacon is browned. (I skipped this)
*Recipe by Kasey Trenum at https://kaseytrenum.com/cheesy-ranch-chicken-broccoli-keto-low-carb-friendly/

Dry Ranch Dressing Seasoning Mix (I used the whole recipe)

  • 1 tbsp dry Parsley
  • 1 tbsp Dill
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp onion flakes or dry minced onion
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

No Bake Key Lime Pie in a Jar

Now that I have sufficient Mason Jars, I wanted to experiment with other uses besides breakfast foods. Our friends, Joanne and Chuck had us for a wonderful dinner and served this No Bake Key Lime Pie in a Jar. WOW! Below is her recipe. Warning – making it in the Mason jam jars shown is quite a large serving. I found those 1 cup jars locally and that would be just enough! Yeah, it is sweet…surprise!!!

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NO BAKE KEY LIME PIE IN A JAR

This recipe is super easy to whip up and makes around 4 small jar servings.  Here is what you need:

  • 1 package of graham crackers (or Emperador lime filled cookies)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 (8oz) package of cream cheese (softened)
  • 2/3 can condensed milk (around 7oz)
  • 1/2 cup plain or vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup key lime juice to taste – this is up to you! Some people like more tart, some people don’t. Just pour until you get it right!
  • whipped topping – the amount will depend on your jars.
  • limes to garnish
  • 4 small glass jars (depending on the size)

She added zest of a lime as well in order to punch up the flavour.

The first thing you want to do is crush up your Emperador or graham crackers and mix them with 2 tbsp of butter.  There are tons of ways to do this but I like putting my graham crackers in a large Ziploc bag and crushing with my hands, then pouring into a bowl to mix with the butter.  Once you have done that set it aside.  

For the pie filling combine your cream cheese, condensed milk, Greek yogurt and key lime juice in a stand mixer and mix on medium speed for about 5 minutes.  If you don’t have a stand mixer, whip vigorously with a whisk until you have a smooth, creamy texture.  If you find your filling isn’t as green as you like add in a drop or two of green gel coloring.  Once mixed, pop it into the fridge for about 10 minutes while you get your jars ready.

Now pour about 1/3 cup of crushed graham crackers into the bottom of your jar and lightly pack them down.  You don’t want it to be too hard, so make sure it is just enough to stay in place.

After that take your filling mixture out of the fridge and pour about 2/3 cup into your jar and sprinkle on some more graham crackers.  Now top it with some whipped topping and a slice of lime and serve!

 

 

Croque Monsieur

We first had this in Paris, France at Fouquet on the Champs d’Elysee and subsequently in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico at the wonderful Merci Restaurant. Merci is better with their homemade bread! Trust me! Below is the version I use at home.

Croque Monsieur

 Croque-Monsieur

A Croque-Monsieur is the French answer to the grilled cheese sandwich. Gruyere cheese, ham, and bread are topped with a creamy Béchamel sauce.

Preparation Time: 7 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Total time: 12 minutes
4 sandwiches

Ingredients:

  • 8 slices whole wheat bread

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 2 tablespoons unbleached, all-purpose flour

  • 3/4 cup milk

  • 1/8 teaspoon sweet paprika

  • fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Dijon mustard for spreading

  • 4 slices ham

  • 1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese (you can also use Emmenthal or other Swiss-style cheese)

  • OPTIONAL – 4 eggs

Instructions:

  1. Toast the bread until lightly browned on one side.

  2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour and whisk until thick and bubbly. Gradually whisk in the milk, until the sauce is smooth and thickened. Whisk in the paprika. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep the sauce warm while your assemble the sandwiches.

  3. Lay four slices of bread, toasted side down on a broiler pan. Brush each one with Dijon mustard, to taste. Lay one slice of ham on each piece . Divide 1/2 cup cheese among the four sandwiches. Top with the second slice of bread, toastier side up. Divide the sauce among the four sandwiches, spreading it over the top. Add one fried egg per sandwich. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the sandwiches.

  4. Broil until the cheese is melted and the tops are bubbly and brown, five minutes or more in my toaster oven. Watch it carefully; yours may be different. Serve immediately.

I like to serve it with a small salad or grilled asparagus.

Link to recipe: http://goodcheapeats.com/2015/02/how-to-make-a-croque-monsieur/


Easy Shepherd’s Pie

Who does not like shepherd’s pie? There are several variations out there. Sometimes it is called Cottage Pie. This one was a snap! The only tricky part was the roux, melting the butter and adding the flour. Make your life easier and use instant potatoes!

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Easy Shepherd’s Pie Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lb. Ground Beef
  • 4 cups Mashed Potatoes
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • 1 tsp Minced Garlic
  • 1 Onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 2 tbsp Flour
  • 12 oz. Frozen Peas and Carrots, thawed (Use a can of mixed peas and carrots)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat and add ground beef, onion and garlic.
  • Cook until browned and drain.
  • In another skillet or pan, melt putter and add flour.
  • Cook roux for 2 minutes.
  • Whisk in Worcestershire and milk.
  • Cook for 1 minute to thicken.
  • Combine beef mixture, gravy and thawed vegetables.
  • Place in baking dish.
  • Top with mashed potatoes and place in oven for 20-30 minutes until heated through. In the last few minutes sprinkle the cheese on the potatoes.

 

Shrimp, Tomato and Spinach Pasta

Eureka! Shrimp in the freezer. What to do? Checked the ingredients I had on hand and found this recipe for dinner. The worst part is cleaning the shrimp, so just cheat and buy them already cleaned and deveined…LOL. Substitute whatever protein you have available. As always, my changes are in red lettering.

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Shrimp, Tomato and Spinach Pasta

Ingredients

  • 5 medium tomatoes, fresh, chopped into large cubes ( one can of diced with juice depending on how much you like tomatoes)
  • 1 cup cooked spinach
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 or 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 small lemon
  • salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (or more)
  • paprika
  • 10 oz fettuccine pasta
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated, for serving

Instructions

  1. Heat a large skillet on medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon olive oil until melted. Add fresh shrimp and half the minced garlic. Make sure shrimp is not crowded. Cook for 1 minute on one side until pink on that side. While it’s cooking, generously sprinkle paprika and salt over uncooked side of the shrimp. Flip the shrimp over and cook for another 1 or 2 minutes until pink on the other side.
  2. To the skillet with shrimp, add chopped fresh tomatoes, cooked spinach, and remaining amount of minced garlic. Add 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (or more). Mix everything well, remove from heat while you cook pasta.
  3. In the mean time cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water to prevent pasta from cooking and getting mushy.
  4. Add pasta to the skillet with shrimp and vegetables with 1 or 2 tablespoons of butter. Add freshly squeezed lemon juice (depending on the juiciness of your lemon, it could be 1/4 of small lemon or 1/2 lemon). Don’t add too much lemon juice. Season with salt and more crushed red pepper. Warm it up on medium heat until shrimp is cooked through, and all ingredients are heated through.
  5. To serve, top with grated Parmesan cheese.