Hello! Long time no blog! It's been a whole month since my last blog post. I honestly hardly cooked at all in that time! Have you ever gotten into a total food rut? Well that's what happened to me. But I was finally able to pull myself out of it, so hopefully my blog posts will be more frequent now.
The dish to pull me out of this most recent food rut was Giada's Parmesan Crusted Pork Chops. I've only heard rave reviews over this dish, one from my friend Lindsey over at Noodle Nights and Muffin Mornings, and it did not disappoint! Seriously, when I took the leftovers into work today and heated them in the microwave - 2 people asked, "What smells so good?!" Followed by, "I'm just gonna go get my plate," and "so you'll come by my house tonight to cook dinner, right?" I think that's one of the bests compliments you can get on your cooking.
PARMESAN-CRUSTED PORK CHOPS
Source: Food Network
For ingredients and directions, visit the source link as I followed it exactly.
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Now, when I was thinking of a side I knew I wanted some simple buttered noodles. I really like Ronzoni's Healthy Harvest extra wide noodles with a touch of Smart Balance and parsley. But I needed a vegetable. I thought of some creamed spinach that I recently had from a local bbq joint. I'm usually not a fan of cooked spinach, but it was so good! So I found a lightened up version from Cooking Light and gave it a test drive. I found that it was relatively simple and easily halved, however I would drastically reduce the amount of shallot. Here's the halved recipe (serves 1-2) with my recommended changes noted.
Source: Cooking Light
1 10 oz. bag of spinach
1 Tbsp minced shallot (I would only use 1 tsp)
1 tsp all-purpose flour
pinch of salt
pinch of nutmeg (excluded)
1/4 fat-free milk
1/4 reduced fat cream cheese
Remove large stems from spinach, and rinse with cold water; drain. Place a large Dutch oven over medium heat, and add spinach. (Spinach will need to be tightly packed into the pan to cook all of it in one batch). Cover and cook 5 minutes or until spinach wilts; stir spinach well after 2 minutes. Place spinach in a colander, and drain well, pressing spinach with the back of a spoon to remove as much moisture as possible.
Place pan coated with cooking spray over medium heat until hot. Add shallots; sauté 2 minutes. Combine flour, salt, and nutmeg; add to pan, stirring well. Cook 30 seconds. Add milk and cheese, stirring with a whisk; cook 1 minute or until thick. Add spinach; cook 30 seconds or until thoroughly heated.