Cuban Sandwich On A Stick


Sunday dinner isn’t always ready to put on the table right when you get home from church. It isn’t a bad idea to have a little something for your family and/or guests to nibble on while they wait. These “Cuban sandwiches on a stick” are easy to put together and don’t require any baking.

Baby Dill Pickles + smoked ham + Swiss cheese


Categories: Cheese, Food and drink, Meat, Pork | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Too Much Planning

Planning a weekly menu can help you control your budget. When you’ve got specific meals in mind, you can draw up a grocery list that is limited to ingredients that you will need. You may pick up a few extra things at the store, but overall it should be easier to focus on finding the products that you will be sure to use. The shopping trip should be shorter, and you should be more satisfied than exhausted when you come home, unload the groceries, and see your sufficiently-stocked pantry and refrigerator.

But then come the variables. You bought lovely, fresh fruit and vegetables. Now you’re afraid you might have overdone it. What if all four avocados ripen at the same rate? Will you be able to eat all five pounds of russet potatoes before they sprout eyes? Is the huge bush of cilantro going to turn black and yellow before you have time to chop it? Are the bananas going to end up so soft that you have to freeze them for a future banana bread?

Just looking at the beautiful bounty makes you too tired to cook! Will someone please take you out for dinner. Nevermind that the ingredients might be at their peak right now.

If you think that cooking is only a science, you’ll probably go crazy. You’ll be happier if not only have the formulas memorized but  also understand the rules. When your life doesn’t go according to plan you’ll know which rules can be broken without ruining everything.

bbq sauce sweet then heat

“Sweet Then Heat” from Mission BBQ is highly recommended.

Perhaps you have pulled pork stuck in the sandwich category of your brain.  Maybe you think it should only be served plated with a side of cornbread, a dollop of creamy coleslaw, oven-roasted potatoes, and a juicy pickle.

You served that on Thursday evening and now, Friday, there is a little bit of meat left over, but it doesn’t look like enough for a meal two adults. And, oh, the last of those four avocados you bought last Saturday is feeling quite soft! Do you lay out a haphazard buffet of plastic containers full of leftovers you’ve colletcted over the course of the week, or is there a possibility of fusing the ingredients into a “proper” meal that you both can enjoy?


Considering someone else’s ideas can be liberating.  I wasn’t so sure that fresh avocado would pair with sweet bbq sauce and pulled pork, but I listened to my husband’s suggestion. The corn tortillas, chopped onion, sliced avocado, diced potatoes, and shredded pork were quite a nice combination.

So. Do plan. Do make lists. But also be happy when creativity can rearrange your plans into a differently shaped success.



Categories: Food and drink, Pork, sauces & condiments, Shopping | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Lazy Lingonberry Pork Roast

One of my coworkers recently retired. She’s using her new free time to sort through things in her house.  She tackled the kitchen and gave me some of her extra cookbooks and ingredients.

Thanks, Kathy, for the port, candied ginger, and the recipe for Crock Pot Cranberry Port Pork Roast.  I just changed out a few of the ingredients to use what I had on hand.



2 (to 3) lbs boneless pork loin roast
1 (14 ounce) jar IKEA lingonberry preserves
1⁄3 cup port wine (or 1⁄3 cup cranberry juice)
1⁄4 cup sugar
1⁄2 small lemon, thinly sliced
1⁄3 cup raisins
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons candied ginger, diced
1⁄2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water

rice, cooked


Put the roast in slow cooker.
In a bowl combine, lingonberry preserves, port, and sugar.
Stir in lemon, raisins, garlic, ginger, mustard, salt, and pepper.
Pour over roast. Cover and cook on low 6-7 hours or until meat is 170°F.
Remove roast and keep warm.

Prepare the gravy:

Pour 3 cups of cooking juices into a saucepan.
Bring to a boil.
In a separate, small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in cold water.
Add this mixture to the saucepan.
Continue cooking the liquid for about one minute or until thickened and no longer cloudy.

Slice roast and serve over rice with sauce.

2 lbs pork will serve 4-5 people, depending on how hungry they are and what sides you serve. We ate roasted vegetable Ritz crackers with cream cheese while waiting for things to be reheat (2nd day) and had green beans and butternut squash custard.


Categories: Food and drink, Pork, Rice, sauces & condiments | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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