Yep. This is my 100th post. This came around FAST. I didn’t know what I wanted this post to be about. I toyed with the idea of making it a Best of, or maybe a My Fave recipes. In the end, I decided to go back to the beginning. The beginning of this blogging adventure.

Once upon a time… No, I won’t do that to you. I will tell you it was about 6 or so months ago. I had bought a bunch of leeks, a new ingredient for me, and decided I would stuff a pork shoulder with them. My plan was to debone the shoulder, stuff it and tie it–also a first for me. I was nervous about tackling all these firsts and I started to think about others who may feel the same way about cooking in general.

I often tell friends not to be¬†afraid to try cooking. I truly believe anyone can cook, all you need is a desire¬†to. So as I stared at that shoulder and the leeks, I began to wonder how I could hold someone’s hand through a similar moment. I began wondering if I could somehow provide¬†support, or share ideas, could I inspire someone? I know, a bit grandiose, but in my heart of hearts that’s what I hoped for.

So, on I went deboning that shoulder and chopping those leeks and trussing that baby up. And I giggled at my deformed shoulder roll thing. And I licked my fingers after tasting the leeks. And I smiled when Linz mmm’d¬†and aaaa’d. And I thought, yeah, I want someone else to feel this way. And, so it began.

I hope you enjoy the recipe as much as we did. And thanks for reading and, hopefully, eating with us.

Roasted Pork with Leeks

1 5-7lb Pork shoulder roast
For the rub:
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp sea salt
2 tbsp English mustard
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp dry oregano
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp coriander
2 tbsp olive oil

If you’ve started out with a bone-in shoulder, you’ll need to remove the bone. You could also use pork belly for this and avoid dealing with a bone.

To debone the shoulder, I started out by cutting straight through the roast, cutting down until I hit the bone. I didn’t take step-by-step pictures of this part, how about you go here for those. When done, set it aside while you prepare the rub.

For the rub, mix all the ingredients listed above, making them into a paste. Liberally rub it all over the roast on both sides. Set it aside while you prepare the filling.

For the filling:
1 bunch of leeks, chopped
1 cp mushrooms, chopped (I used crimini)
2 shallots, chopped
1/2 cp Italian parsley, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil

In a medium skillet, heat the oil and add the shallots and pepper, after a couple of minutes add the mushrooms and leeks. Once the leeks begin to soften, add the parsley. You can season lightly with salt & pepper. Allow it cool for a few minutes before filling the roast.

Preheat oven to 400¬į and get some cooking twine ready. Now for the antsy part… Spread the roast out on your counter. Top it with the leeks filling. Bring the sides of the roast together and truss it with the twine. The one thing you want to achieve, is to make the it as even as possible. That way it will cook at the same rate. Remember to soak the twine before trussing.

Once you’ve tied it up, place the roast on a roasting rack with a pan underneath to catch all the yummy cooking juices. Pop it in the oven for 15 minutes, just long enough to get some nice color on it. Then lower the oven’s temperature to 350¬į and roast until the internal temperature reaches 170¬į to 175¬į (about 35-40 minutes per pound).

Remove it from the oven and allow it to rest for at least 10 minutes before removing the twine and slicing it. You can serve it with the pan juices or make a gravy with them.

Cookingly yours,


Here piggy, piggy

This is DEFINITELY party food in Panama. Any major event ilicits the appearance of this Lechón Asado (roast pork). Sometimes it is referred to as pernil, but it is always deliciously roasted pork kissed by garlic and spices.

This is how it rolls at Casa Price.

Lechón Asado

6-8 lb pork picnic shoulder roast, bone in
1/2 cp parsley, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Herb d’Provence OR
1 tsp dried oregano

Combine the parsley, garlic, salt, and herbs. Using a thin long knife, poke holes into the meaty side of the roast, about 1-inch deep.

Slip a pinch of the parsley mixture into the each hole. The holes should be about 1-inch apart.

Once you have filled the holes, score the fatty side of the roast. This will prevent the thicker layer from curling away and will make it easier when it’s time to slice this bad boy.

For the rub:
1 tsp Jugo Maggi or Worcestershire
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp olive oil
Once you’ve filled the holes, combine the ingredients for the rub. Using your hands, rub this mixture all over the roast and allow it to rest for at least 1 hour. You can allow it marinate longer, overnight even.

Preheat oven to 400¬į. Place the roast, fat side up,¬†on a roasting pan and rack, put it in the preheated oven and allow it to get some color for 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350¬į and roast until the internal temperature reaches 160¬į to 165¬į (about 35-40 minutes per pound).

Oh boy!

Remove it from the oven, tent it with foil paper and allow it to rest for 15 minutes before slicing. You can serve it just like this or with any one of these sauces:
Onion Brown Butter

That’s it. Go eat now.

Turkey Love

There are events that are celebrated¬†for days, even a week at a time. Fashion Week, Mother’s Day, France’s Beaujolais Noveau Day, Valentines Day. All of these important, all celebrated on the date allotted to them. But because they’re all meaningful, they are still appreciated year-round. What about the beloved Turkey? Is it chopped liver? It is certainly treated as such. This humble, loud bird is forgotten about as soon as the clock strikes midnight on Thanksgiving Day.

POOF! It’s gone, except for the remaining carcass¬†that may litter your fridge for a day or two. It seems people wait around all year to eat turkey one day and move on. Why? Where’s the turkey love? Even¬†odd looking birds need love too. I have decided to show some turkey love this year by not limiting my turkey consumption to 1 day.

I will offer up some delicious turkey meals for the next few days. I will think outside of the traditional roasted turkey box and share my turkeyventures with you. Here’s Turkey 1: simple, no fuss, no basting.

Usually, I brine my turkey before roasting (more on that on a separate post). This time I wanted to treat the bird a bit differently, a little outside my comfort zone. I went for a rub of dry ingredients and olive oil. It turned out quite well.

Turkey #1 – Ginger Rubbed Turkey
For the rub:10-12 lb turkey, thawed
3 tbsp pureed garlic (about 6 cloves crushed)
1/2 tbsp each black and white pepper
2 tbsp sea salt
1-1/2 tbsp ginger powder
1/4 cp extra virgin olive oil
Remove giblets and neck from the turkey’s crevices, rinse the turkey in cool running water and pat dry. In a small bowl, combine the condiments together to make a paste. Rub this paste onto the bird, both the outside skin and the inside crevices. Cover it with plastic and allow it to marinate in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, but preferably overnight.

Roasting the turkey
Preheat oven to 400¬į
1 navel orange, quartered
1/2 cp Italian parsley, roughly chopped
5 unpeeled cloves garlic
1 cp ginger slivers
2 carrots, chopped
Remove the turkey from the fridge, use a damp paper towel to wipe off the excess rub from the skin. Mix the above ingredients, add a bit of salt and pepper, then stuff this into both openings in the turkey. Pat the skin dry.

Combine 1/2 cp melted butter (1 stick) and 1/4 cp extra virgin olive olive, and brush it onto the turkey on all sides. Place the bird on your roasting rack (I like roasting all birds with the breast down-this ensures extra juicy white meat) and into the oven for 20 minutes at 400¬į ; this will give it a nice golden brown color. After the 20 minutes, lower the oven’s temperature to 325¬į and cook the turkey until the thermometer reads about 170¬į in the thickest part of the thigh meat.

Once the turkey reaches the desired temperature, remove it from the oven and cover it foil. Allow it to rest covered for about 15 minutes. Remove the aromatics from the crevices before you begin carving it.

That’s it! I served it with an Onion¬†Brown Butter Sauce and the best Mashed Potatoes ever!

What’s in the bag, Part 2

This is what I created with the other half of the items in the bag Lindsay brought home. I won’t bore you with the details of this¬† challenge, you can read all about that in this post.

We’re big meat eaters, the hubby and I. So it was no surprise to find these beautiful strips in the bag. To up the stakes, I decided to season them differently than we usually do¬†and to¬†pair them with something I had not worked with before. Alas, artichokes! I did have to scour the internet for ideas on how to prepare artichokes. Check out the recipe here.

My sis-n-law brought me goodies from her last trip to the South of France. She came back with this little bottle of Piment¬†d’Espelette. I had never heard of this before and¬†was dying¬†to try it since I got it, so I used it to marinate¬†the steaks. Usually I would’ve added garlic to a beautiful piece of meat such as this, Herbs d’Provence¬†too. Different. That was my mission. I stayed away from both my favorite steak condiments and ended up with this most incredible steaks. If you do not have access to d’Espelette pepper, you could sub it with hot paprika.


Espelette Pepper Steak

 NY strip steaks (about 1lb)
2 tsp¬†Piment¬†d’Espelette
3/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp herbs d’Provence (optional)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Mix the spices and oil, then rub on steak. Allow it to marinate for 15-30 minutes.

We cooked our steaks on the stovetop, but I’m sure this will work just as well on the grill. If cooking on the stove, use a heavy-bottom skillet; it needs to be¬†able to get pretty hot to sear the steaks without burning them. Heat up the skillet until it begins to smoke, dab the bottom of the skillet with an oil-soaked paper towel or napkin, just enough to ensure¬†the steaks will not get stuck to skillet. Now put the steaks in, try to avoid crouding them on the pan, otherwise they may begin steaming.

Depending on the thickness of the steaks, it will take about 3-4 minutes per side for rare doneness, don’t forget to lay them on their sides to sear the fat as well. Once you’ve cooked them to your taste, remove them from the pan and let them rest for 5 minutes. This allows all the juices to be redirected around the steak. Now eat!

I served these with Artichoke Fries, follow the link for that recipe.