Tasty Tuesday – Pork Skewers with Pineapple-Scallion Rice

Hello, hello!

Welcome to the jungle Tasty Tuesday!

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For more food awesomeness, make sure you head over to Lean Lena for her Curried Chicken with Vegetables recipe (OM NOM NOM!!) and see what other goodies bloggers are linking up! 🙂

Today, I’m bringing you a blast from the past. My blogging past that is. Not some retro Betty Crocker recipe. 🙂

Before I was A Hungry Runner, I blogged at The Connoisseur Chronicles (holy cow, what was I thinking with THAT name?!) and briefly at Cooking with JenS.

This one is from my brief stint at Cooking with JenS. Enjoy!

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So, I get the Rachael Ray magazine and, mostly, I just page through it but sometimes I come across a recipe that strikes my interest.  She isn’t really the most health conscious of the celebrity chefs (but, of course, she’s no Paula Deen!) and I have to look pretty hard to find a recipe that both strikes my interest and I can manipulate, if necessary.  Sometimes though, I find good ones that serve another purpose besides feeding the family – keeping money in my wallet! (always an excellent thing in my book!)

Rachael (like we’re on a first name basis or something) has this section in her mag where the recipe cost comes in under $10 and would feed a family of four.  That’s pretty nice in today’s tight economy but, hello, groceries are expensive, right?  Well, this one pretty much keeps its promise and delivers a tasty meal to your table.  Pork skewers with pineapple-scallion rice.  How does that sound?  Well, the first thing I think is that it sounds kinda time consuming and maybe a little difficult.  But, don’t fret!  It’s actually pretty easy and the hardest part is finding something to do while the pork and scallions are marinating!  Okay, maybe that’s not the hardest part but, it made sense when I typed it.

Alright, anyway, super easy and her grocery receipt (just for these ingredients) totaled $9.96.  Mine was pretty close – depends on where you shop and if you buy store or name brand items.  Of course, this recipe calls for soy sauce and if you don’t have any in your fridge, well, your grocery total will likely go over $10.  Her total was based on the amount of soy sauce used and, as far as I know, most people have soy sauce already or, if you don’t, you should really get some anyway.  There were only 2 things I had to buy to make this dinner and that was the pork loin and some fresh ginger.  Um, no, do not use powdered ginger.  Not the same result.

So, basically, you marinate the pork and the scallions, thread the skewers, and then grill.  Make the rice on the stove, throw out some extra veggies (salad, steamed broccoli, steamed green beans, whatever floats your vegetable-loving boat), and dinner’s on the table in less than an hour.  No, sorry, this isn’t a 30-minute meal but it’s still super doable on a busy work night.  Put the kids and/or hubby to work!  Someone can chop the pork and scallions while you make the marinade.  Family dinners are WAY more fun when everyone is involved anyway.  Of course, if you can’t get them involved, have a nice glass of wine and some music playing and pretend.  It’s almost the same.  Just don’t talk out loud to yourself.  Bad idea. 🙂

Anyway, here’s the recipe and it’s a keeper.  Happy cooking, eating, and drinking!

dinner

Pork Skewers with Pineapple-Scallion Rice
recipe adapted from the Rachael Ray mag

One 20-ounce can of pineapple chunks in their juice, drained and juice reserved
1 clove garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons finely grated fresh ginger
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (I subbed olive without any taste discrepancy. I’m sure you could use coconut oil if that’s what you want.)
Salt and pepper
1 1/4 pounds pork loin, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice

1. In a resealable plastic ziptop bag, combine the pineapple juice, garlic, soy sauce, ginger, and oil; season with salt and pepper. Add the pork and scallions and let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

2. Preheat grill to medium-high. In a medium saucepan, bring 1 3/4 cup salted water to a boil. Add the rice, cover and cook over low heat for 18 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, thread the marinated pork and two-thirds of the pineapple chunks onto four 10-inch skewers and the marinated scallions onto one 10-inch skewer.

ready to go

Grill the kebabs, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

grilled skewers

4. Coarsely chop the remaining pineapple chunks and stir into the cooked rice. Remove the grilled scallions from the skewer and stir into the rice. Serve the pork kebabs with the pineapple-scallion rice.

pork rice

Serves 4 (well, maybe the pork and pineapple could serve 4 (I had 5 skewers full) but we have leftover rice and Thing 2 REALLY, REALLY, REALLY LOVES rice.)

No calorie/fat information. That’s the downside of a Rachael Ray recipe – you have to guess. But, this is really light on fat and high on protein. I recommend low-sodium soy sauce just to keep those numbers down. The rice? Well, yep, that does add carbs. Sorry. You know, carbs are not the enemy. Just don’t eat the whole bowl of rice. 🙂

Talk to me: Do you love skewer recipes? Do you call them shish-kebabs or kebabs instead of skewers? Am I the only one that thinks ‘skewer’ is a funny word?

So many things: Water! Garlic-Lime Steak with Avocado Salsa! Shoulder burnout!

Hello. hello!

Happy Wednesday!

T-minus 5 days until the movers show up and start packing!

YIKES!

And, of course, today was shoulder/arm burnout day at CrossFit so I’m basically writing this with my arms firmly attached to my side.

Um, kinda got no energy to raise them.

Good thing I’m not in school because I’d never learn anything if I had to ask a question.

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Yeah, no way I’m doing that today.

Anyway, here’s what we did.

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Don’t let the 75# Rx weight for women fool you.

It actually said 95# when we got there.

Um, yeah. None of us could do that.

I did 65#.

I might have been able to do 75# for the clusters but the floor presses were a different story.

By the time I got to the 4th round, I was struggling to press more than 3-4 in a row.

Holy. Hard.

And, because the coaches have a deranged sense of humor, battle ropes seemed like a good “cool down” after that WOD.

Hooray.

So, this morning, Molly decided that she wanted to snack on the leaves of some carnations that I got for Thing 2.

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Sure, she looks cute and innocent. But, she’s a flower eater!

Molly loves plants. And flowers. And other things she shouldn’t eat.

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She loves them so much, she sometimes can’t control herself.

She knocked over the vase.

Water. Everywhere.

At 4am.

Grrrrrrr.

Then, when I got home from CrossFit, I was doing some dishes after breakfast.  Finished up and went to pick up my water bottle.

Apparently, the lid was not screwed on all the way.

Water. Everywhere.

GRRRRRRRR!

I’m afraid to do laundry.

Anywho, I made the most amazing steak for dinner yesterday!

I am the grill master.

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OMG, it was topped with a fresh avocado salsa!

Seriously. Delicious.

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And, I made some Dutch oven bread too!

Oh, my tummy was so happy!

Garlic-Lime Steak with Avocado Salsa
serves 4
recipe from Good Morning America (yes, really!)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Juice and grated zest of 1 lime
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar or cider vinegar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pound flank steak
1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cubed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt, to taste

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice and zest, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic powder, and pepper. Set aside 2 tablespoons of the mixture. Add the steak to the bowl and toss to coat. Cover and set aside for 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, gently toss together the avocado, cilantro, garlic, and reserved 2 tablespoons of the lime marinade. Mix well, then season with salt. Set aside. Heat the grill to medium high and coat the racks with oil or cooking spray.

3. Grill the steak 6-8 minutes per side, depending on your preference. Allow to rest 5 minutes before slicing against the grain. Arrange the steak on a serving platter and serve topped with the avocado salsa.

4. OM. NOM. NOM.

The bread?

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YUM!

I used the Lean Green Bean’s recipe for Foolproof Dutch Oven Bread.

Seriously, my new go-to bread recipe.

In fact, I think I need to go grab a slice.

And maybe slather it with some almond butter.

Because, you know, I’m hungry and all that jazz.

Questions: When it comes to grilling, do you prefer gas or charcoal?  Are you the grill master in your house? What’s your favorite thing to grill?

– jennifer

Honey-Lime Glazed Cornish Game Hens!

Hello, hello!

It’s going to be another scorcher here. How’s the temps where you are? Make sure you’re staying hydrated!

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Here are some great tips from Runner’s World on staying hydrated during summer training. This is also really great information even if you’re not training! Being dehydrated can affect you in ways that aren’t fun. Splitting headaches, fatigue, sluggishness – YUCK!

Okay, the PSA portion of the blog is over. Now, on to the good stuff! 🙂

Remember those Cornish game hens I picked up at the store? Oh yeah, hens + grill = YUM!

I used a recipe I found in my Weber’s Big Book of Grilling – Honey-Lime Glazed Cornish Game Hens. So delicious!

You’re supposed to marinate the chicken for 2-3 hours in the fridge but, speaking from experience, it will still be tasty even if it only gets an hour. I promise.

They’re really easy to make and definitely worth the time! They take about 30-45 minutes to cook over indirect heat.


Did you know that the temperature outside can have an effect on the temperature inside your grill? Yep, sure can! Here are some great tips on hot and cold weather grilling – because the only things that should prevent you from grilling are a thunderstorm or a blizzard. Once those are over however, grab the towel or break out the shovel and get your grill on! 🙂

grilling

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Sorry, got too excited and forgot to snap a pre-cut photo! Hey, at least you didn’t get a picture of just the bones, so…. 🙂

Honey-Lime Glazed Cornish Game Hens
serves 2-4

Marinade
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 Cornish game hens, 1-1/2 to 2 pounds each

1. Whisk the marinade ingredients in a medium bowl.

2. Remove and discard the giblets from the hens and rinse them, inside and out, under cold water. (Mine, thankfully, had the giblets already removed. I don’t do giblets. *shudder*) Pat dry with paper towels. With a sharp knife or poultry shears, remove the backbones and cut in half.

3. Place the hen halves in a large, resealable plastic bag and pour in the marinade. Press the air out of the bag and seal tightly. Turn the bag to distribute the marinade, place in a bowl, and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours, turning occasionally.

4. Remove the hen halves from the bag and discard the marinade. Grill them, bone side down, over indirect medium heat (350°F to 450°F) until the juices run clear and the meat is no longer pink at the bone, 30 to 40 minutes. Keep the lid closed as much as possible during grilling. For crispier skin, grill the hens, skin side down, over direct medium heat during the last 5 to 10 minutes of grilling time. Remove from the grill and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

5. Nom them hens down!

I served our hens with grilled peppers and some grilled naan. The naan made it non-paleo. If you want paleo, give me your naan. 🙂

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One day, Ginny will let me cook unsupervised. Right?

Oooh, oooh, oooh! Look at the awesome shirt I got from my Crossfit box!

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LOVE!

I can’t wait until they get the racerback tanks in!

QUESTIONS:

1. Do you grill year-round? If not, what stops you? If yes, can I get a high five?!

high five

2. Tees or tanks?

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– jennifer