Tag Archives: herbs

5 Minute Magic Green Sauce

avocado, cilantro, lime, pistachio dip, sauce, spread, dressing

This recipe originally comes from Pinch of Yum, and it instantly became one of my favorite easy dips/sauces.

What makes it magic? It’s easy, it’s healthy, it’s versatile, it’s delicious!

Use it as a veggie or cracker dip. Smear it on just-cooked fish, chicken, or burgers. Use the thinner version to drizzle over fresh tomatoes, or roasted vegetables. I bet it would be amazing blended into twice-baked potatoes — or twice-baked cauliflower!

 

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Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin

pw-s-roasted-pork-tenderloin

(Plus a recipe for Emergency Herbs de Provence)

It was one of those days when 4:30 was here before I knew it, and I didn’t have dinner planned. I have no good excuse. Not even a lousy one.

What to do? Same as usual, when “the usual” doesn’t sound good… Hit a recipe website I trust and search for “quick.” After a couple other stand-by’s (All Recipes, Simply Recipes), I landed on Pioneer Woman and came up with her Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Preserves. Which sounds and look very elegant, but is super, super simple, and comes together in 30 minutes or less.

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Blackberry Sauce
photo by Pioneer Woman

Basically, you salt and pepper a pork tenderloin, then coat it generously in Herbs de Provence before roasting. Top it off with a simple fruit-preserves-based sauce.

Not having any Herbs de Provence on hand, I googled for a recipe. I came up with several, but ended up using (as a starting point) this one by Emeril. (Yeah, we’re on a first-name basis.)

Herbs de Provence often contains lavender, but I didn’t have any on hand.  :/

Why this one? Well, because all the herbs have the same proportion, and I like simple! From what I understand, Herbs de Provence has some standard ingredients that are almost always in the mix, but the mix has evolved over time and also, every cook has his or her own variation. Which is great, because there were several ingredients I didn’t have on hand. So here’s my variation:

Recipe: (Emergency) Herbs de Provence

for one 1.35 lb. tenderloin; multiply as needed
 

1 t. dried basil
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. dried rosemary
1 t. dried thyme
1/4 t. dried ground sage

PW’s original recipe called for 8 tablespoons of H.d.P. That’s half a cup – yikes! She was cooking up two whole tenderloins; I was just fixing one tenderloin, slightly over one pound. So I just used all of the above mix, and I still thought it was plenty potently ‘picy!

A note on cooking pork… Rather than cooking by time, use a meat thermometer. Pull the roast from the oven when the temp hits 140-145 F. Then tent lightly with foil and let rest at room temp, till the internal temp hits about 160. Slice and serve. Mmm… perfectly tender and juicy!

For the sauce, PW recommends fig, peach, plum, or whatever preserves you wish. I used blackberry. It adds a lovely sweetness that mellows the pungent herb crust. Perfect for a quick dinner for just me and the hubs — but impressive and foolproof enough to serve special guests!

Garlic herb cheese spread or dip – low carb!

garlic-herb cheese dip
Garlic herb cheese spread

This is such a simple dip, I keep some in the fridge almost constantly. I’m not sure I’d go so far as to call it a knock-off or copy, but it’s kinda like Alouette.

It’s tasty spread on just about any cracker, but for a low carb, gluten free snack, try it with celery or romaine dippers. These are simply the small end of a heart-of-romaine leaf. When I’m chopping romaine for a salad, I always leave the last 4 to 5″ and stash them in the fridge for just this purpose! They’ve got a perfect dipping shape, and I like them so much better than celery; no stringy stuff!

Garlic herb cheese spread or dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 T. sour cream OR Greek yogurt
1/2 t. granulated garlic
1/2 t. granulated onion
1 heaping t. dried oregano
1/4 to 1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper, to your taste
1/4 t. salt (if serving with veggies)

Stir together the cream cheese and sour cream (or yogurt) until pretty evenly combined. Add the other ingredients and stir till well mixed. Refrigerate for at least two hours.

Note: if you are serving this with crackers that are salted, you may leave out the salt.

Tomorrow: What to do with the rest of the romaine — Almost-Panera’s Asian Chicken Salad!

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