Pork Chops with Quinoa and Tomatoes

Tonight’s dinner was pan fried pork chops with quinoa and tomatoes. I finished the chops in the oven for a few minutes. I’ve never done a pork chop that way, and it turned out a little tough, but the taste was still amazing.

If you haven’t integrated quinoa into your diet, try it. Quinoa is rich in protein. It’s a super food. And it tastes really good alone or with some seasoning.

I buy it in bulk. In bulk you might have to soak it for 20 or 30 minutes to remove the outer layer of bitter-tasting saponins. Saponins are nature’s way of keeping hungry animals from eating it. Once removed, the taste is flavorful and grainy without any need for seasoning (seriously).

I threw some garlic and tomatoes in tonight, though, which really allows the quinoa to express itself and get a little extra kick during certain bites.

Bon appétit.


Bonnie and Clyde

Julie over at Attempts at Rational Behavior followed up on my blog yesterday about Glenn Beck and climate change (I love Julie). I’m the Clyde to her Bonnie. I like working off each other. Partners in crime, I tell you.

So go read it, dammit. She’s able to post videos from the Daily Show right in the body of her post!

My favorite line from Julie is this one (emphasis mine):

I’ve considered myself an environmentalist for years, and though I’ve accepted the data regarding AGW, my main concerns have always been the general treatment of the planet and conservation. I’ve always loved the Haida Indian saying, “We do not inherit this land from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.” For me personally it never mattered whether global warming was occurring, and if so whether man helped create it. None of that was going to keep me from recycling or driving a fuel efficient car. Most green technologies, which may be expensive to implement now, will in time save people both ecologically and economically.

One of the greatest parts of being a rationalist and a naturalist is the very essence of respect from the bottom up en lieu of the top down starting with invisible beings. When one’s view comes from the idea that your significance comes from millions of years of beautiful, slowly-driven evolutionary history, a person respects the environment, the animals that he keeps or eats, and certainly the oxygen rich plant life that covers the earth.

Gastronomy is life, not some unsubstantial play on supernatural bread. No matter how hard a person tries to live on Jesus or Mohammed or Buddha alone, he still has to eat real food to get to next Friday.

Tina and I strive to be more and more vegetarian, and when we eat meat, we attempt to be mindful of the sacrifice. If you’ve ever heard the squeal of a pig at slaughter, you know they  aren’t willingly giving their life for your hangover breakfast. Religion stole the essence of respecting meals and degraded eating. There’s a trend among the religious that I criticize, and it’s the devaluation of food preparation, eating and digestion.

What does this have to do with the climate issue? We borrowed this earth from our Children. Live, eat, play and work like we do. Like YOU do.

Bon appétit.

Sunday Night Guest Dinner Chef Michael

My brother in law Michael cooked last night. It was excellent.

Menu was, lightly seasoned skirt steak with pesto, cheese ravioli with sautéed leeks, onion, red pepper, asparagus and garlic, and finally a stuffed artichoke.

Oh la la, bon appétit!


I was so hungry, I cut my steak before getting a picture. It kinda looks like a vagina.

another angle

Another angle. Yum.




When Cousins Visit

On Saturday night, my cousin Jon(athan) and his wife Melissa stopped by Le Café for dinner. He goes by Jon now, and I don’t remember getting the memo that it was always shortened nowadays.

We were so glad to see them. The last time we saw them was at a funeral and the time before that was Lollapalooza about 4 or 5 years ago.

I made five pies, I’m going to upload pictures below.

The only one I didn’t get a shot of was second attempt at a white garlic pizza with spinach and mushrooms. It wasn’t a miserable failure, but it wasn’t great either. I’m going to keep working on it. Tina said it was better than the one that I love from a favorite North Carolina pizza place. But Tina’s biased and likes to say things to get me in the sack.

The best one was the Canadian bacon and roasted garlic one. Oh la la. It tastes rich and slightly decadent.

The other stinker for the night was the potato and rosemary pie. I found the recipe and it claimed it was great. I didn’t agree. But it was a first timer. I cut too many potatoes though, and made potato chips while I was cooking that were to die for. Yums-a-licious.

Here you go. 🙂

Yanko My Panko

I hate to post two dinner blogs in a row, but I found this image floating around on a memory card from last week, and I wanted to throw it up.

Throw up the picture. Not the meal.

This is pork chops breaded in panko bread crumbs sided with corn and spinach salad. I love this meal. It’s a comfort food that really isn’t bad for you. It’s not great. But when you compare eating out and not knowing what’s in food someone else prepared and contrastingly knowing what’s in what you made yourself and loving the taste in your own food, priceless.

IMG_4267 panko