Welcome Foodies!

Whether it's giving a peek of our family homestead, trying a new restaurant, visiting a local farm or whipping up a new recipe, I'll share the experience here with you. I adore ALL. THINGS. FOOD.

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Easy Slow Cooker Pork BBQ

Sometimes I make my own BBQ sauce, which (by the way) isn’t difficult. At all.

Easy Slow Cooker Pork BBQ

And yet, other times I use bottled BBQ sauce. Luckily it’s easy to find an organic, simple BBQ sauce (with pronounceable ingredients) these days at most grocery stores – even the “regular” chain stores like Safeway, not only specialty stores like Wegmans, Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s (all of which I love, but aren’t always convenient for everyone).

So, the other morning I had 10 extra minutes before we needed to leave for school and work – a miracle, I know. I also had a lovely pork roast sitting in my fridge from the weekend’s grocery shopping trip. And a bottle of organic BBQ sauce.

HELLO DINNER!

Easy Slow Cooker Pork BBQ

All I did was coat the pork roast with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Then I dumped about a quarter of the jarred BBQ sauce into the bottom of my slow cooker, set the roast on top (fat side up), then coated the roast with all of the remaining sauce, covered my slow cooker and set it for 9 hours on low.

That’s. It.

When I got home from work I used two forks to break the roast apart into pulled pork, and then I let it sit for a while in the BBQ sauce and juices while I prepared the other things to go along with it.

Easy Slow Cooker Pork BBQ: for those days when you need a “set it and forget it” recipe that can be thrown together in five minutes at 8 a.m.

Easy Slow Cooker Pork BBQ
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 2-3 pound pork roast
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 jar BBQ sauce, preferably organic
Instructions
  1. Pour ¼ of the BBQ sauce into the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. Coat the entire pork roast with the garlic powder, salt and pepper. Set it into the slow cooker, fat side up. Pour the remaining BBQ sauce on top of the pork roast, making sure it's covered on all sides. Cover the slow cooker and set it on low for 9 hours.
  3. Use 2 forks to pull the pork apart and shred it, right in the slow cooker. Give the pulled pork a stir to evenly coat it with the BBQ sauce and juices. Let it sit while you make the rest of your dinner.
  4. Serve with buns or by itself.
Notes
If your slow cooker has an automatic "warm" setting after the cooking time is up, it's okay to let the pork roast sit for a while before you pull it apart (like if the 9 hours of cooking time is up before you get home from work).

 

 

Rustic Penne with Chicken Sausage

Rustic Penne with Chicken Pasta

This past Sunday was one of those days that begged for a quick, hearty dinner. The air had a chill to it, football was on in the family room and we’d just returned from a weekend in Philadelphia.

Rustic Penne with Chicken SausageWhether I’m at Wegmans or my local grocery store, organic chicken sausage is always available and usually on sale. I love it because it can sit in my fridge, and with an expiration date over a month out, I don’t have to worry about squeezing it in right after I buy it. It’s also perfect for those dinners when you’re in a pinch and need something quick.

Rustic Penne with Chicken SausageIn Sunday’s case, I had the chicken sausage in my fridge and the rest of the ingredients were pulled from either the pantry or our garden. The result was out of this world, and the leftover penne with chicken sausage worked perfectly for lunch the next day!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Rustic Penne with Chicken Sausage
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ box dried penne
  • 1 package fully cooked chicken sausage
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1½ cups marinara sauce
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • ½ freshly chopped basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup pasta water
Instructions
  1. Set a large pot of water to boil. Warm 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat, then add the chicken sausage, browning each side for 2 minutes. Remove the sausage to a plate to rest.
  2. Meanwhile, pour 2 more tablespoons of olive oil into the skillet. Add the onions and saute them for 3 minutes, then add the garlic and salt, and continue cooking for 1 minute longer. Pour the chicken broth in, bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to let it simmer for 5 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced by half.
  3. Once the water has come to a boil, add the penne and cook until just before al dente, about 9 minutes.
  4. Slice the sausages and add them, along with the marinara and half the basil, to the skillet. Give it a good stir, and then cover the skillet, continuing to let the mixture simmer while the pasta cooks.
  5. Fold the cooked pasta and ½ cup pasta water into the skillet mixture, making sure the penne is well-coated. Sprinkle the pasta with the remaining basil and serve it hot with shredded mozzarella or Parmesan as garnish, and a crusty loaf of bread.

 

Thank You, Stonyfield

As part of my ambassadorship, Stonyfield is sponsoring my attendance at Women Get Social Philadelphia 2014.

For the past nine months or so, I’ve been doing ambassador work for Stonyfield. Most of the assignments took place last winter, with posts on my blog and others on theirs.

But the final chapter comes to a close this weekend with my trip to Women Get Social – Philadelphia ’14, the conference to which Stonyfield sponsored my attendance.

Stonyfield Organic

I’ve never worked with a brand that was so focused on bloggers, in a way that benefits both me and them. It’s beautiful, mostly because when you’re working in a creative space, being able to stretch your wings and think outside the box generally produces better work.

I produced fun, yummy recipes. I talked about the benefits of Greek yogurt. The sky was the limit.

Love that.

Women Get Social – Philadelphia ’14

Over the past two days a Women Get Social – Philadelphia ’14, we heard this common message:

Stay true to yourself.

Magic happens when you find a brand that understands that.

I had big plans to do two things this weekend, and both have been successfully accomplished:

1. Meet new people, reconnect with old friends, learn something new and get excited.

Women Get Social - Philadelphia '14 Collage

2. Find an authentic Philly cheesesteak.

So, I was FINALLY able to find an authentic Philly cheesesteak – which locals ended up telling me (as I suspected!) was neither Geno’s nor Pat’s!

Turns out it’s Jim’s Steaks South Street! (Cheesesteak. Whiz. Mushrooms and peppers.)

Philly Cheesesteak from Jim's Steaks South Street
CHECK. And CHECK.

Thank you, Stonyfield.

As part of my ambassadorship, Stonyfield is sponsoring my attendance at Women Get Social Philadelphia 2014.

 

A Real Philly Cheesesteak

As part of my ambassadorship, Stonyfield is sponsoring my attendance at Women Get Social Philadelphia 2014.

Gino's Steaks

As an outsider, I’ve been on a quest to find a real Philly cheesesteak. Those of us that live near Philadelphia (I’m about a 2.5 hour drive away) have heard the hype:

Geno’s or Pat’s?

Therein lies the question. An eternal foodie cheesesteak dilemma.

Pat's Steaks

I’m sure locals will tell you:

Forget the Pat’s and Geno’s hype! You have to check out [insert hole-in-the-wall joint here] to get a REAL Philly cheesesteak.

Perhaps.

Regardless, here’s what I’ve gleaned about a real Philly cheesesteak, what it takes to make one authentic:

  • CHEESE WHIZ – Yes. The gloppy, unnatural, yellow melted cheese product that we all hate to love. It’s oh-so-bad, and yet oh-so-good at the same time. Provolone? Only if you’re an out-of-towner or the restaurant’s out of Whiz.
  • DRIPPINESS – A real Philly cheesesteak should be messy. Juices should run from the bottom of the roll with each bite, and using a plethora of napkins is a sign of perfection.
  • CHOPPED BEEF – It appears that the degree to which said beef should be chopped can vary, but everyone agrees that a real Philly cheesesteak should start with chopped beef. No exceptions.
  • A GOOD ROLL – Traditionally a real Philly cheesesteak is served on a long crusty roll, light in texture and prime for sopping up all the drippiness.

This weekend I’m in Philadelphia for the Women Get Social conference. My husband’s coming with me, and I’ve already informed him that my mission is to find an authentic Philly cheesesteak – Cheese Whiz and all!

Stonyfield Organic

As part of my ambassadorship, Stonyfield is sponsoring my attendance at Women Get Social Philadelphia 2014.

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