Thursday, August 15, 2013

Looking Saucy and Cooking Sauces

Not a super lot has been going on except the usual cooking and... oh!  I got sunglasses!

Singing along to the radio... don't worry.  I'm not driving.  I'm sitting in my driveway. :)
I know that seems like a silly thing to get excited about but since I've been wearing glasses since I was 10, cool sunglasses have always just been a dream.  When I was younger, the choices of frames for prescription sun specs (that were cheap since money was tight) were far too dorky for even my dorky self.  I did have a pair of regular ones but, of course, I couldn't see if I wore them.  I also had a pair of clip-ons that were for driving only because... egads.  Awful!  But I still couldn't easily afford prescription ones because I didn't have that sort of luxury money laying around.

These are similar to the ones I had in junior high except the arms of those were pink... and I couldn't see when I wore them.
But then I discovered Firmoo!  First time customers can choose from a selection of free frames, which is what I did.  Single vision lenses are included for free so all I had to do was pay for the tinting and UV/radiation coating.  When all was said and done, I got these for just over $21.  Not bad for prescription sunglasses.

Now, I *do* wear no-line bifocals but since these are mainly for driving, I figured I'd save a nice little bit by just getting single vision lenses.  It feels a little weird for me but it hasn't been bad. :)

You didn't know I wore bifocals or didn't think I was old enough?  Yeah... I was 25 when I got my first pair of bifocals.  That's when I discovered that even though I am fairly low-maintenance, I do have some vanity as well.

What do you think of my new regular glasses I got from the eye doctor?  I'd like to say I got these for $21 as well but no such luck.  Even with insurance, they weren't exactly cheap.

I also did a bit of cooking this past weekend... well, cooking that is worthy of mentioning, anyway.

First, for Andy's birthday, I made him a Pineapple Upside Down Cake!

With the leftover pineapple and half a pork loin in the freezer, I decided to do a roast with 3 different sauces.  I think the Blueberry-Bourbon Sauce is my favorite... or the Apple Chutney... or the Pineapple Curry... or the blueberry... um... yeah.  I really liked all 3. :)  The roast itself was simple.  I just sprinkled the 5 lb loin with salt, pepper, and garlic powder and roasted it at 325*F for 30-40 minutes per pound.  The recipes for the sauces are after the picture.

by Sarrah "Sashi" Steiner
Prep Time: 10-15 min
Cook Time: 50-60 min
Ingredients (3 - 3.5 cups)
  • 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and 1/2" diced
  • 1 Tbsp ground ginger
  • 1 c orange juice
  • 3/4 c apple cider vinegar
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1 tsp whole mustard seed
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 3/4 c raisins
Combine everything except the raisins in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over med heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to a simmer and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for 50-60 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from the heat and stir in the raisins.
Let cool and store covered in the fridge up to 2 weeks.

by Sarrah "Sashi" Steiner
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Ingredients (~ 1 cup)
  • 3 Tbsp apricot preserves
  • 3 Tbsp canned pineapple juice
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp yellow curry powder
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme or 1 Tbsp dried
  • 1/2 fresh pineapple, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2" rings and each ring cut into 16 wedges
In small bowl, combine preserves, juice, mustard, ginger and curry powder.
In small saucepan, combine the sauce, pineapple, and thyme. Heat over med-high. Cook, stirring, until hot and bubbling, 3-4 minutes or until thickened slightly. Serve over cooked pork or chicken.

by Sarrah "Sashi" Steiner
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 25 min
Ingredients (1.25 - 1.5 cups)
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded, deveined, chopped
  • 1/2 c bourbon
  • 16 oz pkg (2.5 c) frozen blueberries, not thawed
  • 1/2 c ketchup
  • 1/3 c apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp molasses
  • 1/8 tsp allspice
Heat oil in large saucepan over med heat. Add garlic and jalapeno and cook, stirring, 30-60 seconds. Add bourbon and increase heat to high. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost all of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Stir in everything else and return to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 20 minutes.
Let cool in pan. Refrigerate in covered container for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months.
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