18 October 2010

U.W.W.H - Days 4 & 5

I did actually cook for Days 4 & 5. 

Day 4 ended up being one of those weird (in a good way) mish-mash meals.  I'm going to call this one  'pretzel-coated artichoke dip-stuffed chicken breasts'.  See, sounds really weird, huh?

I cut a pocket in each chicken breast,

stuffed them with some of the leftover artichoke dip,

and securely closed each breast with a couple of toothpicks.

I coated each breast in those last few crushed pretzels you find at the bottom of the bag

then pan fried them (to develop a nice crust) and finally finished cooking them in the oven.


Odd and ends this dish used up:
2 chicken breasts
last little bit of artichoke dip a friend brought for a party
the very last crumbly remains of some mini pretzels

Day 5 was the best by far! 

Last week I made PW's Perfect Pot Roast and had some of the roasted carrots and potatoes left over along with most of the pan juices.  Oh, and I also still had a ton of PW's Mashed Potatoes.

The November/December 2010 of Cook's Illustrated arrived the day before and one of the featured recipes was for pot roast.  The information on the gravy was incredibly informative and I credit it with Day 5's success.

I used my immersion blender to puree my roasted carrots and a half a roasted onion in with my pan juices.  I poured my mixture through my fine mesh strainer (reserving the 'mush') into a pan.  I heated the liquid slowly and used a constarch slurry and some of the reserved 'mush' to thicken the gravy.  Wow.  I had no idea what a difference those veggies would make.  I'm never making gravy without them again. 
The pork tenderloins are simply seasoned, seared and roastedto serve as a vehicle for this amazing gravy!

I also stirred in some of the pureed carrots in with the leftover mashed potatoes to perk them up a little bit... and added in a little bit of heavy cream.  I also finish them off under the broiler to get that yummy, slightly crispy top layer.

The gravy, even though it was made with pan juices from a beef pot roast, went beautifully with the pork tenderloins and the mashed potatoes.

The reason there are so few photos of this meal was that I couldn't stop stuffing my face long enough to get some good shots.  Hunger won out.

Odds and ends this dish used up:
two pork tenderloins
leftover PW mashed potatoes
leftover roasted carrots and onions
leftover beef pan juices

After being 'good' all week long and not grocery shopping (really, really hard for me to stick to) I was chomping at the bit to hit HEB again to stock up on a few Fall ingredients in order to try out a couple of new recipes last weekend. 

Up next: Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins and Pumpkin Ale IceCream with a Cinnamon Caramel Sauce

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