Spinach Steak Pinwheels

1 ½ pounds beef top sirloin steak *
8 bacon strips, cooked
1 package (10 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed & squeezed dry
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
* or substitute marinated/tenderized flank steak

Lightly score steak by making shallow diagonal cuts at 1 inch intervals into top of steak; repeat cuts in the opposite direction.  Cover steak with plastic wrap; pound with a meat mallet to ½ inch thickness.  Remove plastic.
Place bacon widthwise at center of steak.  In a bowl, mix remaining ingredients; spoon over bacon.  Starting at a short side, roll up steak jelly-roll style; secure with toothpicks.  Cut into six slices.
Lightly oil grill grate to prevent sticking.  Preheat grill to medium high heat.
Grill pinwheels, covered, 5-6 minutes on each side or until beef reaches desired doneness (for medium-rare, internal temp should read 145 degrees F; medium, 160 degrees F.
Pull and discard toothpicks before serving.
Serves 6
From prep to table 25 minutes

Chicken Francese

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup dry bread crumbs
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
1 cup water
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 chicken bouillon cubes
lemon slices

Pound chicken breasts with a meat mallet to ¼ inch thickness; slice into cutlets 1 ½ inch wide. Place beaten eggs in a shallow bowl; in a separate shallow bowl, combine the next six ingredients. Dip chicken in egg, then in crumb mixture, patting to help coating adhere.
In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium heat. Brown the chicken in batches, adding oil as needed, until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove; drain on paper towels.
For lemon sauce, add water, lemon juice and bouillon to skillet, stirring to loosen browned bits from pan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until liquid is reduced by half, 8-10 minutes. Return chicken to pan; toss to coat. Cook until heated through, 4-6 minutes. Serve with lemon slices.
Serves 4
From prep to table 40 minutes

Delicious Glazed Black Pearl Salmon

Four 8 oz salmon fillets – skin removed
1/3 cup soy sauce
¼ cup brown sugar
4 teaspoons Dijon style mustard
Oil for grill grates

Mix the soy sauce, brown sugar and the Dijon mustard together and rub the fillets with the mixture. Allow the fillets to get to room temperature.
Preheat grill to medium high heat – should be about 400 degrees. Lightly oil the grates to prevent sticking. Fish takes about 8-10 minutes per inch at 400 degrees to cook. Measure the thickest part of your fillets to judge how long it will take to cook.
Place the fillets on grill grate. Allow to cook about 5 minutes – turn to second side to finish grilling. Salmon should flake easily – do not overcook. Remember that when you remove from the grill, the salmon is still cooking about another 5 degrees internal temperature. Salmon internal temperature should be 130 to 135 degrees, so pull off the grill when it is about 125 to 130 degrees to finish cooking internally.
A nice glaze will form on the fillets. Serve with cooked rice and vegetables.
Serves 4
From prep to table 20 minutes

Baked Tilapia With Cajun Crumb topping

4 to 6 tilapia fillets – thawed
1 cup soft fresh bread crumbs
4 tablespoons butter, divided
1 ½ teaspoons Cajun seasoning
Pinch dried thyme
½ teaspoon salt
Dash ground black pepper

Heat oven to 400 F.
Spray non-stick oil a large shallow baking dish.
Arrange thawed fish fillets on the prepared baking pan.  Brush with 1 tablespoon of the melted butter.  Combine the remaining butter with the soft bread crumbs and seasonings.  Sprinkle the crumbs over the tilapia fillets.
Bake the fish for 10 to 15 minutes or until fish is cooked thoroughly.  Fish will be opaque and will flake easily with a fork when done.
Carefully remove the fillets to plates with a spatula.
Serve with spicy cooked rice like Vigo yellow rice or dirty rice.
Serves 4
From prep to table 25 minutes

Guinness Corned Beef & Cabbage

2 lb red potatoes, quartered
1 lb whole carrots, cut into 3 inch pieces
2 celery ribs, cut into 3 inch pieces
1 small onion, quartered
1 corned beef brisket with spice packet (3 to 3 ½ pounds)
8 whole cloves
6 whole peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 bottle (12 oz) Guinness stout beer OR reduced-sodium beef broth
½ small head cabbage, thinly sliced
Prepared Horseradish

In a 6 quart slow cooker, combine potatoes, carrots, celery and onion.  Add corned beef (discard spice packet or save for another use).
Place cloves, peppercorns and bay leaf on a double thickness of cheesecloth.  Gather corners of cloth to enclose seasonings; tie securely with string.  Place in slow cooker.  Pour stout over top.
Cook, covered, on low 8-10 hours or until the meat and vegetables are tender, adding cabbage during the last hour of cooking.  Discard cheesecloth with seasonings.
Cut corned beef diagonally across the grain into thin slices.
Serve corned beef with vegetables and prepared horseradish.
Serves 9

Smoky Espresso Steak

3 teaspoons instant espresso powder
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 ½ teaspoons smoked or regular paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking cocoa
¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pound boneless beef top sirloin steak

Preheat broiler OR preheat grill to medium-high heat.
Mix all ingredients except beef; rub over all sides of steak.  Allow steak to get to room temperature.
Broil Method: broil steak 4-6 minutes on each side or until meat reaches desired doneness.  Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.
Grill Method:  lightly oil grill grates to prevent sticking. Grill steak 4-6 minutes on each side or until meat reaches desired doneness.  Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.
Internal Temps: Medium Rare 135 degrees F; Medium 145 degrees F.  Remember that the steak will continue to cook to another 5 degrees F while standing.
Serves 4
From prep to table: 40 minutes

Baked Halibut & Parmesan Crumb Topping

1 ½ lb halibut fillets
3 slices bread
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
dash ground black pepper
2 tablespoons melted butter
Lemon wedges or slices for serving

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Spray a baking sheet or line the pan with nonstick foil.
Thaw halibut if you bought frozen. Cut the halibut to make four (6 oz) servings. Arrange the fillets on the prepared baking sheet. (If fillets have skin still on, place skin side down.)
Tear the bread into pieces and put in the food processor. Pulse until the breadcrumbs are fine.
In a medium bowl, combine the crumbs, Parmesan cheese, parsley, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper and melted butter. Mix well.
Sprinkle the buttery seasoned bread crumbs on the halibut pieces; pat down to help the crumbs adhere to the fillets.
Bake the fillets for about 10 to 12 minutes or until the fish flakes with a fork and is opaque.
Serve the halibut with fresh lemon wedges or slices.
This fish is great served with roasted potatoes or cooked rice.
Serves 4
From prep to table 22 minutes

Garlic Boneless Pork Roast

½ cup chopped fresh celery
½ medium green pepper, finely chopped
½ cup thinly sliced green onions
8 garlic cloves, minced
1 boneless pork loin roast (4 to 5 pounds)
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a small bowl, mix celery, green pepper, green onions and garlic.  Place the roast in a roasting pan, fat side up.  Make deep slits into top of roast.  Fill slits with vegetable mixture.  Sprinkle roast with salt and cayenne.
Roast until the meat reaches desired doneness (medium is 145 degrees F internal temp), 1 ¼ to 1 ½ hours.
Remove roast from oven; tent with foil.  Let stand 10 to 15 minutes before carving.
Serves 8
Prep to Table 90 minutes

Golden Chicken Potpie

4 cups cubed cooked chicken
4 cups frozen cubed hash brown potatoes, thawed
1 pkg (16 oz) frozen mixed vegetables, thawed and drained
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 can condensed cream of onion soup, undiluted
1 cup whole milk
1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
1 packaged (14.1 oz) refrigerated pie pastry

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Combine all ingredients except the pie pastry.  Divide between to 9 inch deep-dish pie plates.
Roll out pastry sheets to fit the top of each pie.  Place sheets over filling; trim, seal and flute edges.  Cut slits in top.  Bake until golden brown 35-40 minutes.
If desired, you may do a top and bottom crust – increase the 1 pkg of refrigerated pie pastry to two packages.
Makes two pot pies – One pot pie serves six
Prep time 20 minutes
Bake time 35 minutes

Shirley’s Easy Baby Back Ribs

Thinking about doing Baby Back Ribs?  This is probably the easiest recipe for Baby Backs you will find and results in fall-off-the-bone  delicious ribs every time!

Pork Baby Back Ribs
Salt & Pepper
Your favorite BBQ sauce

After washing and drying the baby back ribs, salt and pepper as you prefer.
Using a racked baking pan, pour water in the bottom of the pan.  Place the baby backs on the rack – do not allow the ribs to touch the water – with the meaty side up.
Cover with aluminum foil – sealing it so that steam does not escape while baking, but ensuring to tent the foil so that it does not touch the ribs.
Bake at 325 degrees for 2 to 3 hours.  Ribs should appear loose on the bones to go to the next step.
Either finish the ribs with the BBQ sauce in the oven, or on a grill.
Oven Finish – Spread BBQ sauce on the side of ribs that is up – place back into the oven, uncovered, until the BBQ sauce is starting to carmelize.  Turn the ribs over and spread BBQ sauce on the the remaining side and put back into the oven until the BBQ sauce starts to carmelize.  Remove from the oven.
Grill Finish – Spread BBQ sauce on the side of ribs that will be face down on the BBQ grill until the BBQ sauce is starting to carmelize.  Spread BBQ sauce on the remaining side, place it on the BBQ grill rack until the sauce starts to carmelize.  Remove from the grill.
The meat should almost fall off the bones.  Have additional warmed BBQ sauce on the side for those that want to dip their ribs.  Serve immediately.
A fresh salad and freshly baked garlic bread (on the grill or in the oven) are all you need with these Baby Back Ribs.

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