The chops are marinated in a piquant combination of lemon juice, honey, soy sauce, dry sherry and garlic. The dish is as light on kitchen time as on fat: Preparing the marinade is a 5-minute job; after marinating, cooking time is only about 15 minutes.
Grilled Honey-Garlic Chops
Four 1 1/4 -inch-thick lean center-cut boneless pork chops
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon dry sherry
2 cloves garlic, minced
Combine lemon juice, honey, soy sauce, sherry and garlic for the marinade; pour over chops in a heavy plastic bag and seal. Refrigerate 4 to 24 hours. Remove chops from marinade and grill over medium-hot coals or under medium-hot broiler 12 to 15 minutes, turning once and basting occasionally with reserve marinade. Cook to an internal temperature of 150 F. Do not overcook. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional facts per 4-ounce serving: 130 cal., 26 g pro., 3 g fat, 0 carbo., 100 mg sodium, 65 mg chol.
Spicy cocoa Sloppy Joes
So easy to make, seemingly so familiar. What's different here is the cocoa and the dash of spice added to your usual homey Sloppy Joes, to take this sandwich beyond routine family fare with a new flavor dimension.
The recipe developer, Linda Stahl at Hershey's Kitchens, says she based this concoction on a recipe she often makes for her family. She chose the ingredients because they work together nicely, finding the perfect proportion of cocoa to spice so the cocoa intensifies the flavors to give a smoky note - it's rich but not sweet, as with chocolate in Mexican mole sauce.
Makes about 4? cups sandwich filling, plenty for 8 Sloppy Joe sandwiches
1 pound lean ground beef
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons cocoa
1? tablespoons yellow mustard
2? teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoons salt
8 hamburger buns
Cook ground beef and onion in large nonstick skillet on medium heat, about 10 to 15 minutes, until beef is browned and onion is tender. Drain excess fat. Stir in ketchup, cocoa, mustard, chili powder, pepper and salt. Heat another 10 to 15 minutes on low heat, or until hot. Serve in buns.
Cover; refrigerate leftovers.
Baked Ham With Cabernet-Peppercorn Glaze
Here's a baked ham dish with a certain distinction, that is, different without being disconcerting - and in no way difficult to make.
Red wine and cracked black peppercorns are the power basis of a simple but effective combination of ingredients that gives this ham both a burnished glaze and rich flavor.
The starter recipe calls for a 6- to 8-pound ham and makes 12 to 16 servings. If that's not enough for your hearty party, there are simple instructions for expanding the dish to serve 20 to 25 diners.
Makes 12 to 16 servings
6- to 8-pound smoked, bone-in ham (shank portion)
2 cups cabernet sauvignon or pinot noir
2 tablespoons finely chopped cipollini onions or shallots
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
5 tablespoons honey
1 cup canned reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon butter
Heat oven to 350 F.
Combine wine, onion and thyme in medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Set aside 1 cup wine mixture for serving sauce.
Place ham in shallow baking pan; score by making diagonal cuts, about 1/8-inch thick, in a diamond pattern in surface of ham. Sprinkle with pepper and rub into surface cuts with fingers. Brush ham with 3 tablespoons honey.
Pour 1 cup of remaining wine mixture over ham. Bake ham in center of 350 F oven for 1? to 2? hours or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest portion (not touching bone) registers 140 F (about 15 to 18 minutes per pound), basting every 30 minutes with 1 cup more of remaining wine mixture.
Remove ham from oven. Transfer ham to cutting board. Loosely cover with foil. Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing. Discard wine mixture in pan.
Meanwhile, combine ? cup reserved wine mixture and chicken broth in medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, until mixture is reduced to 1 cup. Stir cornstarch into remaining ? cup reserved wine mixture, then stir mixture into hot wine-broth mixture. Add 2 tablespoons honey and butter. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Bake ham in center of heated oven for 3 to 4 hours, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest portion (not touching bone) registers 140 F (about 15 to 18 minutes per pound), basting every 30 minutes with 1 cup more of remaining wine mixture.
Grilled Steaks with Martini Twist
Prep: 10 minutes
Marinate: 30 minutes
Grill: 14 minutes
4 boneless beef top loin steaks, cut 1-inch thick (1-3/4 to 2 pounds total)
1/4 cup finely chopped green onions
1/4 cup gin
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel
1 teaspoon tricolored peppercorns, crushed
2 tablespoons sliced pimento-stuffed green olives
Lemon peel strips
1. Trim fat from steaks. Place steaks in a plastic bag set in a shallow dish. For marinade, in a small bowl stir together the green onions, gin, olive oil, and lemon peel. Pour over steaks; seal bag. Marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes, turning bag once. Drain steaks, discarding marinade. Press the crushed peppercorns onto both sides of the steaks.
2. Preheat gas grill. Reduce heat to medium. Place steaks on the grill rack directly over heat. Cover and grill until steaks are desired doneness, turning once halfway through grilling. (Allow 14 to 18 minutes for medium rare and 18 to 22 minutes for medium.) Season to taste with salt. Garnish the steaks with sliced onions and lemon peel strips. Makes 4 servings.
To cook on a charcoal grill, prepare steaks as above. Grill directly over medium coals, allowing 14 to 18 minutes for medium rare and 18 to 22 minutes for medium, and turning once halfway through grilling.