Smoked Paprika Almond Crusted Pork Chops
Recently, I have been testing out a new gluten-free diet with no sugar and no dairy to see how I feel after losing these ingredients from my diet. It has been hard at times, especially when you are feeling lazy and you know that pasta or a quick run to a cheeseburger and shake is no more than 10 minutes away, but it has allowed me to be more inventive with my food. For example, using almonds to crust pork instead of the traditional bread crumbs. To be honest, the idea popped into my head watching Gordon Ramsay make an herb-crusted rack of lamb, but he has enough credit in his life that I think he’ll be okay.
Here is my recipe. It makes 2 portions and goes well with nearly any side. I choose a simple side of broccoli for this dish.
 Ingredients
Dredge
Slivered Almonds – a handful
Smoked Paprika – 1 tbsp
 Pork
2 Pork Chops
Dijon Mustard
Salt and Pepper
Canola Oil
 Methodology
1.       Grind the almonds into a spice blender until they have the consistency of coffee grounds. Add in the smoked paprika, along with a  pinch of salt and pepper to ensure full incorporation of flavor. Place the mixture on a plate and set aside.
2.       Sear pork chops in canola oil in an oven proof pan, browning both sides. Preheat the oven to 350 F
3.       Place the pork chop pan in the oven for 7 – 8 minutes to ensure thorough cooking
4.       Spread mustard on a separate plate and spread it thin. Take the pork chops and pan out of the oven and coat them in the mustard. Next, dredge the pork chops in the almond mixture. Place them on an elevated rack and back into the oven so that a crust forms on the almond mixture around the pork. This generally takes 3-4 minutes.
5.       Let the pork chops rest slightly before devouring!

Smoked Paprika Almond Crusted Pork Chops

Recently, I have been testing out a new gluten-free diet with no sugar and no dairy to see how I feel after losing these ingredients from my diet. It has been hard at times, especially when you are feeling lazy and you know that pasta or a quick run to a cheeseburger and shake is no more than 10 minutes away, but it has allowed me to be more inventive with my food. For example, using almonds to crust pork instead of the traditional bread crumbs. To be honest, the idea popped into my head watching Gordon Ramsay make an herb-crusted rack of lamb, but he has enough credit in his life that I think he’ll be okay.

Here is my recipe. It makes 2 portions and goes well with nearly any side. I choose a simple side of broccoli for this dish.

 Ingredients

Dredge

  • Slivered Almonds – a handful
  • Smoked Paprika – 1 tbsp

 Pork

  • 2 Pork Chops
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Canola Oil

 Methodology

1.       Grind the almonds into a spice blender until they have the consistency of coffee grounds. Add in the smoked paprika, along with a  pinch of salt and pepper to ensure full incorporation of flavor. Place the mixture on a plate and set aside.

2.       Sear pork chops in canola oil in an oven proof pan, browning both sides. Preheat the oven to 350 F

3.       Place the pork chop pan in the oven for 7 – 8 minutes to ensure thorough cooking

4.       Spread mustard on a separate plate and spread it thin. Take the pork chops and pan out of the oven and coat them in the mustard. Next, dredge the pork chops in the almond mixture. Place them on an elevated rack and back into the oven so that a crust forms on the almond mixture around the pork. This generally takes 3-4 minutes.

5.       Let the pork chops rest slightly before devouring!

A simple dish that is sure to satisfy. Pesto linguine with portabello and red bell peppers.

First, create a pesto with basil, olive oil, garlic, and almonds. I use almonds because they are about $15 per pound cheaper than pine nuts. Saute portabellos and peppers in olive oil, making sure to salt them at the last second. Then, start the pasta.

Once the pasta is al dente, throw it together in a medium heat pan with touch of pasta water. Make sure that the pesto coats the pasta evenly first and toss in the veggies.

It’s a great weeknight meal.

A simple dish that is sure to satisfy. Pesto linguine with portabello and red bell peppers.

First, create a pesto with basil, olive oil, garlic, and almonds. I use almonds because they are about $15 per pound cheaper than pine nuts. Saute portabellos and peppers in olive oil, making sure to salt them at the last second. Then, start the pasta.

Once the pasta is al dente, throw it together in a medium heat pan with touch of pasta water. Make sure that the pesto coats the pasta evenly first and toss in the veggies.

It’s a great weeknight meal.

Delicious whole foods salad for days when you forgot to pack a lunch. Southwest chicken salad.

Delicious whole foods salad for days when you forgot to pack a lunch. Southwest chicken salad.

Bagel Friday: My Work Co-Op
Many offices have a Co-Op of people that join together to purchase something that increase office morale. These opportunities are a great way not only to make connections with people outside of your group, but since they are generally food-based a chance to show your expertise of the best options to eat near the office. My office does bagels and cream cheese!
I look forward to my bagel and cream cheese on Friday almost more than even the fanciest of dinners; even on days that I pay.

Bagel Friday: My Work Co-Op

Many offices have a Co-Op of people that join together to purchase something that increase office morale. These opportunities are a great way not only to make connections with people outside of your group, but since they are generally food-based a chance to show your expertise of the best options to eat near the office. My office does bagels and cream cheese!

I look forward to my bagel and cream cheese on Friday almost more than even the fanciest of dinners; even on days that I pay.

Flank Steak with Sauteed Onions and Mushrooms; Side of Broccoli
Need a gateway to eat a little healthier? Me too. So when flank steak and broccoli both went on sale at the market, I jumped at the chance to make it.
First, I marinated the steak in 1/8 cup of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of brown mustard, 2 cloves of diced garlic, and a touch of horseradish mixture. I let it marinate for in the fridge for two days. I then drained the excess of the mustard mixture, cut off a 6 oz. piece, and simply seared the steak in cast iron pan with olive oil.
In a separate non-stick pan, I lightly sauteed onions and mushrooms with butter to finish the steak. I also steamed broccoli in a small sauce pan.
After the steak was medium rare, I let the steak rest for 5 minutes to finish the remaining components of the dish. When the steak was finished resting, I cut the steak against the grain. And then, the dish is finished like the picture.
Side note: Flank steaks do not come in 6 oz. portions ever. They also aren’t the best reheated unless smothered in a heavy sauce do to the lack of fat content. Therefore, when making this recipe only cook what you are going to eat immediately.

Flank Steak with Sauteed Onions and Mushrooms; Side of Broccoli

Need a gateway to eat a little healthier? Me too. So when flank steak and broccoli both went on sale at the market, I jumped at the chance to make it.

First, I marinated the steak in 1/8 cup of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of brown mustard, 2 cloves of diced garlic, and a touch of horseradish mixture. I let it marinate for in the fridge for two days. I then drained the excess of the mustard mixture, cut off a 6 oz. piece, and simply seared the steak in cast iron pan with olive oil.

In a separate non-stick pan, I lightly sauteed onions and mushrooms with butter to finish the steak. I also steamed broccoli in a small sauce pan.

After the steak was medium rare, I let the steak rest for 5 minutes to finish the remaining components of the dish. When the steak was finished resting, I cut the steak against the grain. And then, the dish is finished like the picture.

  • Side note: Flank steaks do not come in 6 oz. portions ever. They also aren’t the best reheated unless smothered in a heavy sauce do to the lack of fat content. Therefore, when making this recipe only cook what you are going to eat immediately.
Steak and Salad
This is a simple and delicious meal that is perfect for that first sunny day of the week. It’s so easy that you will get to enjoy as much sun as possible. It is also very light, so you won’t feel weighed down if you go to the beach and play soccer.
Salad Dressing: 
1 tbsp of olive oil
1/4 lemon’s zest, microplaned
Touch of basil, preferably made into a paste
1 tbsp of red wine vinegar
Salad:
1/2 Orange bell pepper
Baby Spinach
1/2 Avocado
Feta Cheese
3 Strawberries, sliced
Steak:
4oz. Top Loin Steak (cut of a 8 oz steak), quickly seared with salt and pepper 

Steak and Salad

This is a simple and delicious meal that is perfect for that first sunny day of the week. It’s so easy that you will get to enjoy as much sun as possible. It is also very light, so you won’t feel weighed down if you go to the beach and play soccer.

Salad Dressing: 

  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1/4 lemon’s zest, microplaned
  • Touch of basil, preferably made into a paste
  • 1 tbsp of red wine vinegar

Salad:

  • 1/2 Orange bell pepper
  • Baby Spinach
  • 1/2 Avocado
  • Feta Cheese
  • 3 Strawberries, sliced

Steak:

4oz. Top Loin Steak (cut of a 8 oz steak), quickly seared with salt and pepper 

This seems rather appropriate for a blog change post!

This seems rather appropriate for a blog change post!

Changing of Blog

Hi All,

As you may (thanks Mom & Dad) or may not have noticed, I have changed around my blog to not be so budget and theme focused, and more about all the intricacies of cooking for one person. I am doing this for a number of reasons.

  • I started $50 a Week to achieve some financial goals, including paying off medical bills and a credit card(s). Those goals either are achieved or will be achieved very quickly.
  • There are so many things to talk about outside of budgets that make good food appealing
  • Rules are constricting sometimes, and I want a little more room for freedom
  • There are a million recipes for four people, but next to zero for one, and I cook for myself really frequently.

Budgets and general themes will remain with in this blog, but they will no longer be the centerpiece. I had a great time with $50 a Week, but I really look forward to Table Set for 1. Updates coming soon. :)

Arugula and Chicken Flat Bread Sandwiches
Simple and deliciously cheap. I didn’t even use a whole chicken breast for these. These are also great for Times when you only have
The ingredients are super simple to make this.
1/2 of a chicken breast - marinated in Italian dressing (also a good time to use leftover chicken)
Two handfuls of Arugula
Red onion to taste
Spicy Hummus as a sauce
Whole Wheat Pita
Simply bake or pan fry the chicken and assemble for a delicious Mediterranean meal for around $5 per a meal.

Arugula and Chicken Flat Bread Sandwiches

Simple and deliciously cheap. I didn’t even use a whole chicken breast for these. These are also great for Times when you only have

The ingredients are super simple to make this.

  • 1/2 of a chicken breast - marinated in Italian dressing (also a good time to use leftover chicken)
  • Two handfuls of Arugula
  • Red onion to taste
  • Spicy Hummus as a sauce
  • Whole Wheat Pita

Simply bake or pan fry the chicken and assemble for a delicious Mediterranean meal for around $5 per a meal.

americastestkitchen:

Washing Blender Jars
Washing the blender jar can be a real chore, especially if foods have had time to harden. (And let’s be honest—who doesn’t procrastinate before taking on this annoying task?) Get a head start on the cleaning process by following this method: First, fill the dirty blender halfway with hot water and add a couple drops of liquid dish soap. Then, with the top firmly in place, turn the blender on high for 30 seconds. Most of the residue pours right out with the soapy water, and the blender jar need only be rinsed or lightly washed by hand. Another advantage to this technique: It keeps your fingers out of the jar and away from the sharp blade.
Get more tips for Trouble-Free Kitchen Tool Cleaning.

americastestkitchen:

Washing Blender Jars

Washing the blender jar can be a real chore, especially if foods have had time to harden. (And let’s be honest—who doesn’t procrastinate before taking on this annoying task?) Get a head start on the cleaning process by following this method: First, fill the dirty blender halfway with hot water and add a couple drops of liquid dish soap. Then, with the top firmly in place, turn the blender on high for 30 seconds. Most of the residue pours right out with the soapy water, and the blender jar need only be rinsed or lightly washed by hand. Another advantage to this technique: It keeps your fingers out of the jar and away from the sharp blade.

Get more tips for Trouble-Free Kitchen Tool Cleaning.