Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Getting back into the groove...

As we slowly get accustomed to the new surroundings, things are starting to fall into place and we are getting back to normal in the kitchen! We are starting the process to get involved with a remodel of the kitchen, which will inevitably slow us down some... but until that starts, I will be making some dents in the recipe piles! Lots to talk about today so let's get started.

Baking on Tuesday for Wednesday Treat Day continues! Looking for a fun cookie recipe, I went browsing through The Cookie Book and found one that caught my eye. This book was published in London and lists weight as well as volume for measurements of the ingredients. I went with the weight measurements and posted the recipe as I made it... I don't think the listed volume measurements in the book are 100% correct.

This recipe, Greek Honey Crunch Creams, uses Greek honey, which has a more pungent flavor and is a bit more expensive. These are a sandwich style cookie that are speckled with flecks of orange zest. The crunch comes from chopped walnuts that are added to only the top half of the cookies before baking - the cookies themselves are more soft and slightly chewy. A creamy rich frosting, with a hint of honey, holds each side together as the sweet filling. The recipe is a little tedious as you need to portion out 40 pieces and roll into balls - but for this recipe, it was so worth it. Since there are a fair amount of people at Jeff's office, I made two batches of the recipe. I did one with orange zest and one with lemon to see if there was a noticeable difference in flavor. I think the orange version has a slight edge over the lemon, but that is probably because I already like that combo.

For dinner tonight, we started out with a twist on hummus with the recipe Soybean Hummus. Instead of chickpeas, Edamame adds a vibrant green color and a new depth of flavor. I did have to add a touch more olive oil and about a tablespoon or so of vegetable stock to get it to blend correctly. I served this with toasted whole wheat pita bread that I rubbed with a cut garlic clove. This was pretty addicting and we both enjoyed how the zesty fresh dip paired with the crispy pita wedges.

I also served Pork Chops with Country Gravy as the main portion of tonight's meal. Thick pork chops are dredged in a coating of flour seasoned with marjoram, thyme, sage and salt. After being cooked in melted butter until the chops gain a crisp golden crust, the leftover seasoned flour is whisk together with milk and added to the pan. As it starts to cook, the flavorful bits left on the pan easily release and help create such a tasty thick sauce. The pork remains very juicy with a slight pink in the center. There is enough sauce to drown the chops if you wish, but you may want to serve these with some good ol' mashed taters to soak up the extra.


  1. It certainly appears you are well back into the groove. So glad of that!

    I have never used soy milk. Is it interchangeable with regular whole milk?

    Keep on making my mouth water....


  2. Oh my. The cookies look like they ARE mouth watering. Of course the hummus and pitas look great too, but those chops... I must try. Thanks for posting =)

  3. I'm just a little afraid of over cooking them and making them dry. How thick should the chops be?
    Btw, I just noticed the link. Thanks!

  4. this looks so yummy........the pork chops look so good will try it out tommorow

  5. It all looks great. I never would have thought about using edamame for hummus. I'll have to give that a try as well as those cookies.
    Good luck on the kitchen remodel.

  6. Barely moved in and already remodeling the kitchen. I'm so jealous. Chops w/country gravy are a staple here--so easy to make using what I always have in the kitchen. Yum!

  7. I am loving those cookies, Joe!

  8. Pat - Certinaly use regular milk!

    Annie - Thanks! The chops were about 3/4 to an inch thick!

    Lexi - I hope ya like them!

    Barbara - The remodel is just in the planning stages... We are meeting with a couple people in a week to get the process started!

    wheresmymind - interesting and tasty!

    Cyndi - I know huh? The kitchen really does need some help though =\

    Nic - They were gobbled up pretty fast, I might have to make another batch for us to freeze!