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ham chive frittata
Ham and Chive Mini Frittatas

brined pork tenderloin
Brined, Grilled Pork Tenderloin

gratin potatoes
Barbecue Gratin Potatoes

asparagus
Grilled Asparagus

 

Menu Plan for the week of May 17, 2013:  Saturday's Recipes

Ham and Chive Mini Frittatas
Brined, Grilled Pork Tenderloin
Barbecued Gratin Potatoes
Grilled Asparagus

Cooking time:  45 minutes for menu     Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

        We have ham in the Salad tomorrow - with a bit in the scallops and a bit in the frittatas.... Makes shopping easy.  The pork should be brined earlier in the day - but timing is very flexible: 2 - 12 hours.
I use a disposable aluminum foil pan for the potatoes.  I wash it and reuse if possible ;-)

Ham and Chive Mini Frittatas                         Preparation and cooking time:   35 minutes
       Mini Frittatas look like cupcakes but are actually fluffy eggs, mixed with small bits of anything savory. These have a bit of ham, some cheese and lots of fresh herbs. They can be served, hot, warm or cold and are great to do ahead for a party or, in summer, a picnic.

1/2 cup diced ham, about 2oz (60gr)
3 eggs
1/3 cup (1.5oz, 45gr) shredded cheese
2 tbs snipped chives, fresh or dried
butter or cooking spray
6 cherry tomatoes for garnish 

Cut ham into small pieces.  *Butter or spray a nonstick muffin (tartlet) pan, one that holds 6.  I know it sounds redundant to butter a nonstick pan but these will stick if you don't. Divide the cheese, ham and chives evenly between the cups.
Crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk well.  Using a ladle or spoon divide mixture evenly between the cups.  Bake at 400F (200C) for 12 - 15 minutes or until set. 
Frittatas will puff up considerably and then fall when removed from oven.  Allow to cool 5 - 10 minutes before removing from pan; they will start to come away from the sides of the pan as they fall making them easier to get out.  Serve with sliced cherry tomatoes, warm or at room temperature.

*Note:  if your muffin pan is silicone you do not need to butter it.  

Brined, Grilled Pork Tenderloin            Preparation, cooking time: 40 minutes,  10 early
    Brining keeps meat moist and tender during cooking and is particularly well-suited to pork.  The tenderloin cooks quickly on the barbecue, and the rub adds even more flavors to it. Remember, slightly pink is now okay for pork, and over-cooking can ruin the best efforts....

1 pork tenderloin, 14oz (400gr)
The Brine:

2 cups very cold water or water and ice, mixed
2 tbs sea, kosher or other coarse salt
2 tbs brown sugar
2 tbs molasses
The Rub:
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried marjoram
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp dry mustard

Earlier in the day, at least 2 hours and up to 12 hours before cooking, mix water, salt, sugar and molasses in a deep bowl.  Stir until sugar and salt are dissolved.  Add pork, making sure that it's totally covered.  If not, you can put pork in large zip-lock bag and add brine.  Refrigerate, turning occasionally, until ready to cook. 
When ready to cook, remove pork and pat dry with paper towels.  Discard brine. 
Mix all ingredients for the rub and sprinkle on all sides of pork, patting it lightly to stick.  Cook on barbecue grill for 15 - 20 minutes, turning to brown all sides.  Internal temperature should reach 155F (70C) or until only slightly pink in center.  Remove and let rest a few minutes.  Carve into 1" (2.5cm) thick slices and serve.  Could also be roasted in the oven, 400F (200C) 25 - 30 minutes.

Barbecue Gratin Potatoes                                   Preparation and cooking time: 40 minutes
  You can do these in the oven, but the heat from the grill makes a delicious, slightly crispy cheese crust you will miss.  With a little care you can get them out of the pan and onto a serving plate in one piece. 

2 potatoes, 12oz total weight (350gr)
1 onion 
1/2 cup cheddar cheese (2oz, 60gr), shredded  Substitute Colby, or other 'yellow' cheese.
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbs olive oil

Thinly slice potatoes and onion. 
Swirl oil in a small metal or foil pan to cover the bottom.  Layer 1/2 of the potatoes, then onions and top with the remaining potatoes.  Mix broth and Worcestershire and pour over potatoes.  Top with cheese.  Cover with foil and cook over indirect heat on barbecue grill about 30 minutes, or until done, checking periodically to make sure they don't dry out and burn. 
Or bake in 400F (200C) about 45 minutes.
Note:  If you don't have a metal or foil pan you can make a packet out of a double layer of foil.  Brush with oil, including the part you will fold over.

Grilled Asparagus                                    Preparation and cooking time: 15 - 20  minutes
    General consensus is that one should not grill white asparagus.  I agree - green is better, but white will taste delicious as well.  It just gets a bit more 'golden' before it's done.  Finish with some fresh herbs.

8oz (250gr) asparagus spears, white or green  this time fatter ones are best
1 tbs olive oil
1 tbs butter
1 tbs freshly snipped chives.

Prepare asparagus by snapping off the tough ends.  If it's white asparagus use a vegetable peeler and peel stalk end half way to tip, laying it flat on the counter to prevent breaking.  Rub with olive oil.  Either cook directly on barbecue grill (being careful not to let any slip through, or on a mesh grill pan.  Turn frequently.  Should be done in 7 - 15 minutes depending on size and heat.  They will start to brown slightly but stay a lovely bright color.  Can also be baked at 400F (200C) for 15 - 25 minutes.  When done toss with butter and sprinkle with chives.  Either serve immediately or keep warm in low (150F, 65C) oven for up to 15 minutes.

Cooking Schedule: 45 minutes for menu plus 10
Assemble all food, utensils and serving dishes
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
scissors, large bowl, medium bowl, whisk, muffin pan,
small bowl, grill pan, foil or pan, barbecue grill

Earlier in the day:
Brine pork, refrigerate
Dinner:
Turn on / light barbecue grill
Turn oven on, 400F (200C)
Shred cheese
Slice onions, potatoes
Assemble gratin, cover, put on barbecue
Butter muffin pan
Dice ham
Snip all chives
Put ham, chives, cheese in muffin cups
Whisk eggs
Add eggs to muffin cups, bake
Remove pork from brine, pat dry

Mix ingredients for rub, rub on pork
Mind the potatoes
Trim asparagus, rub with oil
Start to cook pork
Remove frittatas, let rest
Cut cherry tomatoes for garnish
Turn pork, move off direct heat
Remove frittatas, arrange on plate, garnish
If asparagus is fat, start to cook now
Serve frittatas
If asparagus is thin, interrupt and start now
Finish starter....
Done?
Check pork, asparagus
Remove potatoes but leave covered
Remove pork, let rest
Remove asparagus, finish
Remove potatoes or serve from pan
Slice pork
Serve all