My brother brought us up to date via Facebook: “I’m sorry you’re missing the weather today — 16 degrees.” It was our second day in Florida. The temperature had dipped to about 45 degrees overnight and by morning had risen to a crisp 55. Not as frigid Ohio, but still soup weather.
I came prepared. Unlike last year, when I brought no recipes and found the Internet in our campground had been wiped out by a hurricane, I came this week with a clutch of recipe ideas to try. I brought a slow cooker, a rice cooker, a grill and freshly sharpened knives. Our camper is equipped with a 3-burner stove, a midget oven and a microwave. If pressed, I could probably make a multi-course feast with that equipment.
(Tony brought a toaster oven and a 7-inch table-top electric grill. What does he plan to make with those pretend appliances, I wonder?)
Update: Tony just read this over my shoulder and said, “Toast.”
Okay, then. Maybe we can eat his toast with the Southwestern pork and Navy bean stew with green chilies I made for dinner. It simmered all day on the kitchen counter in the slow cooker, and it smells heavenly. It tastes pretty good, too. I had a test bowl after 7 hours and another after 8. By then the white beans had broken down and become creamy. The thick stew is studded with big cubes of tender pork, slices of sweet potato and bits of mild green chilies. I deepened the flavor with onions and garlic and seasoned the stew with plenty of cumin and oregano.
I heated the slow cooker on high as I cut and added the ingredients. By the time the last can of beans was drained and scooped into the pot, the temperature of the mixture had risen enough to skip the usual 15-minute preheat on high. This will be convenient for those who assemble the stew before work.
As for me, I’m just hanging around the camper, listening to my stomach growl and waiting for that toast.
PORK AND WHITE BEAN STEW WITH GREEN CHILIES
2 1/2 lbs. pork butt, in 1-inch cubes
1 jumbo white onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tbsp. oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
2 cans (about 5 oz. each) chopped mild green chilies, drained
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, quartered lengthwise, and sliced thin
2 cans (about 16 oz. each) chicken broth
2 cans (about 16 oz. each) Navy or Great Northern beans, drained
Heat a slow cooker on high. Chop/measure/prepare each ingredient and add to a slow cooker in order given. Stir, cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 8 hours or until pork is tender and beans are soft and creamy. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with more salt to taste. Makes about 10 servings.
(I left my weekly planner and food diary in a motel on the way to Florida, so this week’s report is incomplete. Here’s what I recall:)
What I cooked last week:
Egg salad; scrambled egg on seeded toast with hot sauce.
What I ate in/from restaurants last week:
Southwest salad with chicken and a hunk of baguette at Panera; a Burger King Croissanwich; chicken teriyaki skewer, one salt and pepper shrimp, two spoonfuls of chicken stir fry and a sugar-dusted fried doughnut at Szechuan Buffet in Statesville, N.C. (the only place we could park with a camper in tow); pulled pork, potato salad, corn dodgers and iced tea at Bar-B-Que Hut in Sumter, S.C.; a bacon and pineapple pizza from Pizza Hut in Jacksonville, Fla. (delivered to our motel room); a pulled pork and slaw sandwich and Diet Coke at Memaw’s Bar-B-Q in Palm something (Bay? Harbor), Fla.
From Gail B.:
How do I print some of the recipes you put in your weekly newsletter? I cannot find a print icon. I even went to your blog but no icon there, either. Thanks.
I’m sharing your question because others have asked, too. I also get questions about why there is no way to post recipes to Pinterest and other collection sites that enable users to keep track of recipes they want to save.
Unfortunately, I can’t help because I don’t handle the physical production of the newsletter. The kind folks at Mimi Vanderhaven manage the mailing list and editing functions, and I am grateful for their help. I will ask them again if there’s a way to add these features. Meanwhile, maybe there’s a computer whiz out there who has an easy solution for printing recipes from this newsletter.