Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Amazing Dinner

I made the best dinner that I think I ever have, which consisted of the world's tastiest Bruschetta--trust me, when you try it you'll agree--Pork Marsala with Garlic Cheddar mashed potatoes and The yummiest Banana Pudding you will ever have tasted.

What you'll need for this 3 course meal:
6 Campari Tomatoes
1 Yellow Tomatoes
5-6 cloves of Garlic
5-6 Basil Leaves
2 tbs. butter
French Bread
1 1/2 tbs. EVOO
Salt and pepper to taste

Pork Marsala:
Pork chops--boneless or bone in--2 per serving
1/2 cup flour
Salt and pepper to taste
olive oil
1 cup of marsala wine
5 or 6 baby bellas
3.5 tbs. butter
1/4 cup of milk

Garlic Cheddar Mashed Potatoes:
5-6 red creamer potatoes
4-5 garlic cloves
1 cup mild shredded cheddar
1/2 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbs. butter

Banana Pudding:
1 pint of heavy cream
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1 package of instant vanilla pudding
4 super ripe bananas
a box--or 2 ;) --of vanilla wafers

First things first...The Bruschetta, and trust it's not just ANY Bruschetta.
*Seed your tomatoes by cutting them into sections and squeeze...not too hard or you'll break down the tomato too much, but just enough to get most of the seeds out
*finely chop all of the garlic cloves and saute over medium heat in about a tsp. of EVOO--extra virgin olive oil--until they are lightly browned--save 2/3 for later
*Roll the basil leaves together and thinly slice
*Slice the French bread at an angle and toast in a pan of melted butter--be careful because it can burn quickly
*Put the tomatoes, garlic and basil leaves into a bowl and mix with 1 tbs. of EVOO and salt and pepper to taste
*Last and most important step: ENJOY!!

The Main Dish--Pork Marsala with Garlic Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
*First off, cut your potatoes into 1/2 pieces and boil with a tbs. of salt
*Dredge--lightly flour--the pork chops in the flour, salt and pepper mixture
*Heat about 2 tbs. of EVOO in a medium saute pan over medium low heat--you'll no it's at the right temperature when the oil flows around the pan easily, like water
*once the oil is hot enough put the pork in the pan and cook for about 4 minutes, or until brown, do the same on the other side until the pork is fully cooked, by reaching an internal temperature of at least 165--medium well
*Slice the Baby Bella's and add to a saute pan of melted butter
*Add salt and pepper to taste
*Once the Mushrooms and browned, de-glaze--add wine or some kind of acid--the pan with the Marsala wine
*Let the wine reduce--thicken--and add the milk
*Continue to reduce until it has the consistency of chocolate syrup
*Once your potatoes are fork tender, shut them off and drain the water
*Mash with the potatoes with 2 tbs of butter and the remaining garlic from before
*add your milk and cheddar
*continue to mash until creamy but slightly chunky--no Gravy needed

Last, but CERTAINLY not least, the Grand Finale, Banana Pudding
*Whip the cream, until the consistency of coolwhip
*Mix the sweetened condensed milk with the whipped cream
*Mix the pudding according to package instructions
*Mix the cream mixture with the pudding and let sit in the fridge for 5-10 minute.
*Slice the bananas and layer accordingly
*wafer, banana, mix, wafer, banana, mix
*ending with mix and wafers, decorated however you feel it should be decorated!
*It's best if it sits for at least 6 hours in the fridge, because the flavor of the banana goes all through the pudding. But by all means, try it when you make it..for quality control, of course ;) This is the tastiest, and surprisingly simple, banana pudding

All in all, this dinner was delicious. My husband didn't talk except between courses.
I didn't know that tomatoes could be so good when mixed with garlic and olive oil, on slightly toasted bread! And who knew that mushrooms could so harmoniously go with wine and seasoning atop tender, buttery pork chops. And the mashed potatoes! Let me tell you about the mashed potatoes. There aren't words to describe it. Literally, my husband took one bite and said wow. That was all he could manage.
And the banana pudding was just made last night, and is almost gone. There's only two of us in the house...that's how good it is. Trust me, it won't last long. In fact, I would make a double batch if you're bigger than a family of two.
The recipes you see are based on 2 servings, so if you need to make more than that, double or triple the recipe as necessary. Enjoy! And know, that your food will turn out delicious!