Week II – Eating out of my freezer

February 6 & 7, 2011

A couple of days ago I really had a hankering for pulled pork, which is very strange because I haven’t eaten pork in about three years. But I saw a picture of a Super Bowl party and there was pulled pork, so I broke my February rule of only eating out of my freezer and bought a pork shoulder on Saturday – the only consolation is it was really cheap and I had all of the other ingredients in my pantry.

Pulled Pork

Sunday morning: 9:00 am (or the day before you want to make this)

I trimmed as much of the fat off of the pork shoulder as I could and placed it on a clean dish lined with saran wrap.

Then I made the dry rub:

1 tbsp (15 mL) dark brown sugar

1 tbsp (15 mL) paprika

1 ½ tbsp (22 mL) cracked black pepper

1 tsp (5 mL) onion powder

1 tsp (5 mL) cumin

1 tsp (5 mL) dry mustard

½ tsp (2 mL) cayenne

Mix all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Pat onto a 5 lb (2.2 kg) pork shoulder. Wrap in up in the saran and place on a clean plate, and put it in the fridge overnight.

Monday, February 7

12:00 am – got the crock pot out and place the marinated pork into it. Turned it onto low. It should take about 6 hours to cook.

5:00 pm – it looks like its ready, but I am not picking the lid up until it has been cooking for another hour. I think I’ll make the bar-b-que sauce. And yes, you could buy a commercial one, but this is about using things/stuff in my house/pantry and I have all of the ingredients I need to make a great  sauce. I am going to wing it, add a bit of this and a dash of that and hope for the best: (BUT – I added the approximate measurements)

1 cup (250 mL) organic ketchup, 1 tbsp (15 mL) Worcestershire sauce, 1 tbsp (15 mL) molasses, 2 tbsp (30 mL) pure apple cider vinegar, 1 tsp (5 mL) onion powder, 1 tsp (5 mL) dry mustard powder, 1 tsp (5 mL) paprika, 1 tsp (5 mL) chili powder, and about ½ cup (125 mL) water.

I eye balled all of the ingredients and it turned out to be too thick, so I added about an extra ¼ cup (60 mL) of  water.

Let it come to the boil, cover with a lid, reduce the heat to simmer, and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

6:00 pm – the pork is so incredibly tender it is falling apart. I had to really be careful about taking it out of the crockpot. There is still a far amount of fat visible fat so I removed as much of it as was possible – no wonder pork shoulder is so cheap. I mostly eat beans, fish, and poultry so all of that fat is gag!  Yikes!

I shredded the meat using a fork and then poured the sauce over top. Better to toss it gently. I served it on crusty buns with my favourite cole slaw. And all I can say is, “YUM!” No wonder people love this. I think it may in fact become a treat dish that I serve occasionally. YUM!

February 8, 2011

There is some leftover pulled pork, which was so amazing I may become hooked on this little voyage into carnivore domain.

I made a vegetable bean soup for a segment on Cityline that I am shooting tomorrow, and it tasted so good I made an extra pot of it for us. My husband is going to eat the rest of the pork and I am going with the soup. (To get that recipe go to the side navigation bar and click on the Recipes on TV index)

February 9, 2011

Shot my segment on Cityline this morning (airs February 16th) and then packed the car and drove to London, Ontario. I am going to be presenting my favourite talk How to Live to be 100 and Still Remember your Name! for the Women’s Canadian Club on Thursday. Can’t drive there and back in one day anymore, totally kills my back! I don’t know how truck drivers do it.

Sort of a boring dinner, albeit inexpensive – I packed myself a peanut butter sandwich on 100% whole grain whole wheat bread, and had cut up oranges and a yogurt for dessert.

February 10, 2011

Gave my talk and then drove home via the 401 – where are all of those people going? And so fast? People were flying by me – they had to be going at least 140 km. Yikes! I must be getting old when I start commentating on the drivers on the road…..

Got home around 7:00 pm and was starving.

My husband had had a bowl of peanuts for dinner.

A crummy bowl of peanuts!

I am away one day and he reverted back to cave man mentality. Okay, it could have been a bowl of meat, but the fridge is full of fruits and veggies, and there was a container of soup leftover from the Cityline segment, and he had peanuts.

So, what did I have?

A crummy handful of peanuts along with a handful of roasted chickpeas, and for a hint of added health and flavour I had a big bowl of thawed frozen berries and plain yogurt with cinnamon sprinkled on top.

Doesn’t sound all that healthy but Canada’s Food Guide would have given my top points. Nuts and chickpeas go under the Meat and Alternatives, I had my Fruit and Veggies with those berries, and the yogurt was my Milk and Alternatives. So sometimes a crummy handful of peanuts can actually contribute to good health, but size matters and that handful can only be a handful. No seconds.

February 11, 2011

Pot luck dinner tonight!

A bunch of very talented women who I have the pleasure of improvising with every week are getting together tonight for a pot luck.

I’m bringing a rice and lentil salad for the vegetarians in the group.

Awesome Lentil and Rice Salad

Okay, there are a lot of ingredients in this salad, but it’s not as scary as it looks. I’ve made the method a one bowler, throw all ingredients into one bowl and toss. Easy, squeasy and the best part it’s a total meal in one bowl.

1 Tbsp. (15 mL) lemon zest

¼ cup (50 mL) fresh lemon juice

2 Tbsp. (30 mL) extra virgin olive oil or canola oil

1 tsp. (5 mL) Dijon mustard

¼ tsp. (1 mL) cinnamon

Pinch of cayenne

1 – 19 fl oz. /540 mL can lentils, drained and rinsed

2 cups (500 mL) cooked and cooled brown rice, use long or medium grain

1 cup (250 mL) coarsely chopped fresh parsley, loosely packed

¾ cup (175 mL) diced red onion

½ cup (125 mL) currants

½ cup (125 mL) dried cranberries

1 Tbsp. (15 mL) finely chopped fresh mint

1.                   In a large bowl whisk together lemon zest, juice, olive oil, Dijon, cinnamon and cayenne. Add drained and rinsed lentils. Toss.

2.                   Toss in brown rice till just combined.

3.                   Add parsley, red onion, currants, dried cranberries and mint. Toss till just combined. Serve. Store any leftovers covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Makes – 5 cups (1.25 L) Serves – four – 1 ¼ cup (310 mL) servings as a main dish

Each 1 ¼ cup (310 mL) serving contains

400 Calories, 8 g total Fat, 1 g Sat Fat, 0 g Trans Fat, 200 mg Sodium, 65 g Carbs, 14 g Fibre, 12 g Protein

February 12, 2011

Saturday night dinner.  Hmmmmmm.

Well there is leftover rice in the fridge. Frozen veggies in the freezer, and I have eggs – it’s going to be a standby at my house:

Sensationally Simple Stir Fried Rice

2 tsp. (10 mL) canola oil

1 large onion, diced

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 omega-3 eggs

2 cups (500 mL) cooked and cooled brown rice

2 cups (500 mL) frozen peas and carrots, thawed

3 Tbsp. (45 mL) lower sodium soy sauce

1 Tbsp. (15 mL) Thai Style Chili Sauce, optional

½ cup (125 mL) cashews or peanuts, chopped

1.       Heat a medium frying pan over medium heat. Add the oil and onion and sauté for 3 minutes or until onion is just cooked through. Add the garlic and the eggs. Stir till eggs are cooked through.

2.       Add rice, thawed vegetables, soy sauce and Thai Style Chili sauce if using. Stir well.

3.       Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 5 minutes or until the vegetables are   cooked.

4.       Sprinkle with cashews and serve.

Makes- 6 cups (1.5 L)

Serves – 4 – 1 ½ cup (375 mL) servings

Each 1 ½ cup (375 mL) serving contains:

330 Calories, 14 g Total Fat, 2 g Sat Fat, 0 g Trans Fat, 540 mg Sodium, 42 g Carbs, 5 g Fibre, 12 g Protein

February 13, 2011

Sunday night dinner- I am writing an article on picnics, still, and haven’t quite got the oven fried chicken recipe down pat – so tonight its potato salad and oven fried chicken. Too bad it’s too cold to eat outside!

Posted in My Spin on Things
One comment on “Week II – Eating out of my freezer
  1. Wendy Lorenz says:

    Hi Mairlyn,

    I absolutely loved you on Harrowsmith Country Life!(loved the whole show) and I was really happy to see you
    today on Cityline! I noticed in your blog that a couple of your recipes use dried cranberries. Are those the sweetened dried cranberries like the Craisins type or unsweetened ones (which I have never seen but heard of)?
    Thanks! Looking forward to your new cookbook! I have not seen the current ones but I will look them up next time
    I am at Chapters. I’m always looking for easy flavourful healthy recipes that my family will like. Yours look like they will fit the bill!

    Wendy Lorenz, Ottawa

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