Barbecue Sauce and the fun of visiting small towns with quaint book shops

A pretty view through the lace curtain at a quaint book shop in Cranbury, N.J.

A pretty view through the lace curtain at a quaint book shop in Cranbury, N.J.

It’s Friday, and I’m thinking BBQ for the weekend as in Pork spare ribs,  and some home-made barbecue sauce.  Spring is here in , yet in the Northeast, the temperatures are still quite chilly.   This is funny. While I still need some kind of hat, I can’t bear to put on my winter red hat; today, I’ve got to bring down some of my collection of baseball caps, something to cover my head, yet not quite a summer hat.   You , know those, wide-brimmed , straw or fabric hats.

Wishing on wearing once again, my warm weather  collection of short sleeve tees, my favorites, the “Life is Good”  in a couple of weeks perhaps.

Let’s get cooking!!!!

Barbecue Sauce

1 cup ketchup

1/2 cup cider vinegar

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp chili powder

1/8 tsp salt

1/4 cup water

3 stalks celery, chopped (perhaps dices)

2 bay leaves

1 clove  garlic, chopped

2 Tbsp chopped onion

4 TBSP butter

4 TBSP Worcestershire sauce

1 Tablespoon paprika

Dash of black pepper

Combine all ingredients and bring to a boil.  Simmer about 15 minutes.  Remove from heat and strain.

Recipe from:

Cookbook: “This Little Higgy went to marke#

This cookbook has an intriquing Introduction,

” The Higginbottom ancestors immigrated over time to Water Valley , Mississippi from England by way of Barbados, Virginia. They fought in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars and by 1870 were ready to head west.  By 1880 , most of the family of John Higginbottham and wife Lucy Ann and their twelve children had arrived and settled in Dublin, Texas. ”

Note: A nice outing, is visiting a used book sale, or flea market.  My hobby is to keep a sharp eye out for things “Made in the USA” , cookbooks included.  I like to learn about other parts of the country and what their ancestors prepared.  Another book , I came across, is a Southern recipe book,  I enjoy reading through those pages. I discovered this cook book while I was at the Cranbury bookshop, a quaint book shop set up in a very old 1800’s style house.  Although a little chilly for an old house, bring a sweater along with you , so you can pull up a chair, and browse through the pages of a book  or two.  There are nooks a cranny’ by the windows with  chairs set up for your to sit and read.

Well, a picture is better, if I can't take them all home!

Well, a picture is better, if I can’t take them all home!

IMG_9640

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My Valentine’s Surprise dinner: Georgia Peach BBQ sauce Pork chops

Quick Georgia Peach BBQ sauce: Oweee, this is finger  licking good!!!

Into saucepot stir together :  bottled BBQ sauce, ( ie.  Sweet Honey Ray’s , Kraft ),  and add one jar peach preserves,( reserve  the last couple tablespoons for topping later) ,   Gulden’s  spicy mustard 2 tsp , brown sugar 2 -3 tsp,  molasses,in amounts your liking tor  taste, ( 1/2 tsp –  one teaspoon). Heat this BBQ sauce mixture up on stove on low heat, taste to check flavor and adjust as needed. 

The Pork Chops:

Sear, pan Fry pork chops,   on both sides to brown , drain and take out of pan, and finish the chops in the oven.  ( I bought the boneless pork sirloin chops in the “Big Buy ” package on sale for $2.49/ lb.- woo…whoo!!

Place pork chops in a 9 x 13 inch roasting pan , spoon or ladle on  the Peach BBQ sauce on top of pork chops , and  place in a slow Oven on low heat- 250 degrees  F.  and let bake slowly to retain moisture , for 40 – 50 minutes.  Cover loosely with aluminum foil. 

For the Side dishes :  Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Boil potatoes in a a medium  pot filled e/4 of the way with water and tsp of  chopped  garlic.   Let slow boil for 50 minutes , then  drain and mash with milk,  You can add a Tablespoon or two of  cream cheese, and 2 Tablespoons of butter. … UUmmm, Yum Yum!!!!.

Sauteed Spinach :

Purchase a bag of fresh spinach,  wash by rinsing and  spin in salad spinner.  Get out your  trusty Iron skillet , add a bottom cover of  Extra Virgin olive oil and finely chopped garlic and slowly sautee with the lid  placed on top. Lift lid every couple of minutes to peek and stir around with Teflon spatula.

Serve  on Valentine themed tablescape :    red -themed placemats, vase of flowers Pink roses from my sweet husband.

Ham Recipes

Maple Orange-Glazed Ham

Description

Spiral sliced ham brushed with a glaze of orange juice, maple syrup, star anise, cinnamon and cloves.

Ingredients
  • * 1 Cook’s® Bone-in Spiral Sliced Ham
Maple-Orange Glaze
  • * 1/2 gallon (2 quarts) orange juice
  • * 2 star anise
  • * 2 cinnamon sticks
  • * 3 whole cloves
  • * 1 cup pure maple syrup
Preparation
  1. Remove and discard glaze packet from ham or reserve for another use. Prepare ham according to package directions, uncovering and brushing occasionally with the Maple-Orange Glaze for the last 30 minutes of the baking time.
  2. Maple-Orange Glaze: Combine orange juice, star anise, cinnamon and cloves in large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until glaze is reduced to 1 cup. Stir in syrup. Strain glaze; cool.
  3. Carve ham just before serving.
Notes

Great Substitute: Prepare as directed, using Cook’s® Bone-in Butt or Shank Portion (or Half Ham).

Brown Sugar and Mustard-Glazed Ham

Description

A simple glaze prepared with spicy brown mustard and dark brown sugar brushed over spiral sliced ham.

Ingredients
  • * 1 Cook’s® Bone Spiral Sliced Half Ham
Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze
  • * 1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • * 2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • * 1 teaspoon water
Preparation
  1. Remove and discard glaze packet from ham or reserve for another use. Prepare ham according to package directions, uncovering and brushing occasionally with the Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze for the last 30 minutes of the baking time.
  2. Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze: Mix sugar, mustard and water until well blended.
  3. Carve ham just before serving.
Notes

Great Substitute: Prepare as directed, using Cook’s® Bone-in Butt or Shank Portion (or Half Ham).

Recipe- Pork Chops

Crusty Oven-Baked PORK CHOPS

 

1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard

3 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan Cheese

1 Tablespoon mince fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon crumbled dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 cups dry bread crumbs

Four 8 -ounce center-cut loin pork chops, each 1 inch thick, well trimmed of fat

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 sprigs fresh thyme, for garnish

Directions:

1.  In a shallow bowl, whisk together mustard and water.  On a piece of wax paper, combine Parmesan cheese, thyme, salt ,pepper, and bread crumbs.  Hold one end of each pork chop with your fingertips and lightly brush both surfaces with mustard mixture.  Firmly dredge each chop in bread crumb mixture to coat both sides.  Refrigerate chops in a single layer on platter lined with wax paper for at least 1 hour. (chilling prevents coating coming off during cooking)

2.  Adjust oven rack to upper portion of oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.  Line a shallow baking pan with parchment paper, and lightly brush 1 tablespoon oil over surface of  paper.

3.  Place chops in prepared pan 2 inches apart.  Lightly drizzle remaining 1 tablespoon oil over chops and bake in preheated oven until underside is lightly golden and slightly crispy, about 10 minutes (check by lifting with a broad metal spatula).  Remove from oven and carefully turn chops with metal spatula.  Return to oven and continue cooking until second side is slightly crispy, about 15 minutes.  Transfer to platter, garnish with thyme, and serve.

Per serving:

Cal. 397      Chol. 99 mg      Fat 20 gm    Sodium 554mg.

 

 Cookbook:

Lean Italian Cooking by Anne Casale  1994

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