Summer is upon us and grills are grilling, pools are splashing, gardens are producing, base hits are being hit and scores are being tallied.......ah....summer time and the living is easy. Our gracious hostess with the mostess,
Gitano who usually takes such good care of those of us, who willingly subject ourselves to the gang-up and always posts such an awesome blog for all to enjoy, is on a much deserved little Summer break.
If, I had this to look at, and the lifestyle that goes with it, I might reconsider coming back to civilization.
On with the show.... For those of you unfamiliar with the gang-up, the basic premise is, through an ingredient suggestion posted on the Buzz, at a designated time, we create a dish or dishes using all the ingredients and nothing
more except, salt, pepper and water. We are allowed to make 2 changes only. We can remove 2 items thus using 8 ingredients, we can take one thing away, and sub with one an ingredient of our own choosing, or we can add 2 ingredients to the existing list, resulting
in 12 ingredients all together. This is our own All-Recipes version of Chopped. Sometimes we have an odd assortment of stuff to work with, sometimes we have a theme, this time around we had a great list and no theme, so it was "cooks choice" for what meal
or what direction to take. The submissions below are in the order that they were received. The ingredient list was as follows:
LIME, GARLIC, HEAVY CREAM, SHALLOTS, PINEAPPLE, PORK, POTATOES, OLIVE OIL, ROSEMARY, & MANGO
First up to the stove to show off her talents, our own:
Baking Nana and her creation:
Piggy Chops with Tropical Salsa BN is one of the lucky ones that lives in beautiful Southern California and has access to nearly year round gardening. How fortunate for her that she was asked to "garden sit" for a friend while she was away. As luck would
have it, the friend grows limes, rosemary, shallots, peppers, and a host of other veggies all for the taking. Look how many freebies she got to use in her creation!
In her own words: "This was a lot of fun. Hubby said this is a keeper"
Green onion and Red bell peppers were her additions.
Now, our next contestant and one that I'm particularly proud of, if I don't mind saying so is my own daughter
zeevon and her creation:
Potato Chip Chops In her words:
"This recipe only encompasses the pork with the salsa, I served it with a side of fresh pineapple and sweet potato fries with cilantro and lime zest." The jaw dropping thing for me was was watching her make her own sweet potato chips and
dredge the pork! Surely, I did something right to inspire such creativity :) Additions: egg whites and cilantro.
Longtime member laughingmagpie or as she's known around the Buzz, LMP took her creation a whole different direction. Thai
Meat & Potatoes I love Thai and I'm sure this was terrific! And she just wouldn't be LMP, if she didn't have a wine suggestion and offering. In her own words: "
served with a very fruit forward BC Reisling. Yum!!!" Additions were basil and Thai green curry paste.
Now I could be wrong, but I think we have
Live, Laugh, Love, Cook joining us for the first time with her beautiful creation of:
Mango & Pineapple Glazed Ham Steak with Roasted Garlic, Mashed Red Potatoes For a first-timer, nicely done LLLC. I hope you had fun and will participate again. It's always good to have new ideas and new participants. It also appears that she didn't have
any changes and used the original 10 ingredients.
Another new participant and our resident Culinary School Student is:
Cookin Up A Storm. Her contribution and gorgeous plating of an easy dinner idea is: Pork
Cutlets with Tropical Summer Salsa
In her own words:
We actually kind of liked it but I would tweak it more before making it again. This is a cool challenge. And I like that I got more than 10 minutes to come up with a recipe!
Her additions were, Vidalia onions and Red Thai chili peppers.
And lets face it, it just wouldn't be a gang-up challenge without that sassyoldlady
Sassy is the resident deputy of all things AR and of course, not to be outdone contributed 3 full recipes using the ingredients.
Sassy Pork Steak and
Sassy Fruity Salsa and last but certainly not least,
Sassy Skillet Potatoes In her own words:
The final product was mouthwateringly good! First time I have cooked a pork steak in 30+ years. The whole shebang cost me around $15, so for 4 that's only $5 each. Cheaper than beef by a mile! Evidently math skills weren't her strong suit
in school. :) Her additions were Red bell pepper and French Bread.
Another newbie on the scene and a very welcome addition I might add is our own Buzz favorite: Wyattdogster If I'm not mistaken, she was one of the mother/daughter teams that said
they would work together early on. I'm in awe of this fabulous looking appetizer and can guarantee you I'll be trying these. How good would this be at a cocktail party?
Rosemary Pork and Potato Balls with Spicy Tropical Cream I am seriously looking at this and wondering how long it will be before AR stamps the 'Kitchen Approved' label on them. Glad you decided to join in and take the plunge Wyatt. In her words:
I would have killed for just one more spice! Changes made were: taking away the olive oil and adding the jalapeno.
Now, making her 3rd appearance and no longer a newbie to the challenge is another family member of mine. Let me introduce to you my step mother,
Mcvon. She rose to the challenge and made something that's a new twist on an old classic.
"Top Drawer" stuffed pork chops for 2 These look dandy and I have it on authority they were very tasty too! To have a little after dinner treat, she came up with this yummy looking creation.
Mango Lime Ice- mcvon style In her words: The chops were entirely too much to eat at one sitting so we had half, and saved the other half for dinner the next day. Such a nice presentation and so tasty, I might just serve it the next time we have
company for dinner. One change was made, pineapple was eliminated and bread crumbs were added.
Please don't send out the lynch mob, but you guessed it, time for another "von". This time the youngest member of the von clan showed off her talents and really, could I possibly be any prouder? I seriously don't have to worry
that this girl will starve. Meet Ivon She treated the mcvons and myself to her creation the other evening and it was spectacular.
Swine & Garlic Taters with a hint of Lime she also served a side of sauteed zucchini. I must say, she also brought something refreshing and delicious to a fairly traditional meal.
Chilled Mango & Pineapple Soup In her words: The plate needs to look good, always clean up the plates before you serve someone.
Additions were sugar & butter.
Let's give a rousing round of applause for our very own Grand Dame of the Buzz and the Queen of AR
Marianne It really gives me great pleasure that she decided to join us this time around. For as long as she's been here, I do believe this is the first time she has joined in. This looks wonderful and I'm sure tastes fabulous.
Pork Chops with Pineapple and Mango Cream In her words: The best part was the sauce with the cream (naturally). My photo doesn't have the pineapple on it. The darker yellow stuff is what the fruit mixture looked like before it got the cream.
So the picture isn't indicative of what I made, but it's close enough! Additions were: Honey and Jalapeno.
Always a fun contributor to the buzz and witty with words, linda2d is joining us for the first time. Great to have you and what a lot of work she did.
Jerk pork with Fruit Salsa & Scallions,
Ribbon Fries with Lime Zest and this lovely dessert offering:
Creamy Tropical Dessert Cup. In her words: I made a whole meal consisting of seasoned pork patties with fruit salsa, ribbon fries and a creamy frozen dessert. While the pork wasn't my new favorite, it wasn't too bad with extra salsa and probably
even better without the bun. I'm sure I made the dessert thing way more complicated than it needed to be but it was pretty foreign to me...I don't make smoothies or ice cream so I was pretty pleased with the result. The fries were the most comfortable for
me and the lime zest was a nice touch I wouldn't have thought of before. Nice job Linda. Additions were: scallions & jerk seasoning.
Again, it's not a Gang-Up without everyone's favorite leprechaun. Welcome
Trishie and her beautiful first time to participate daughter, Robyn. When we talked about daughters helping mothers with this challenge, I thought that's what we would have. Turns out these daughters have their own ideas
of things to make! Robyn made a couple of things and by the looks of it, she is going to give her mother a run for her money.
Bobbie's Pigs on a Stick (I wondered how long it would be before something was on a skewer), and
Bobbie's Twice Baked Spud. Now then, it seems that it's time for Robyn to have her own AR account. In her words through her mama:
Something we would all eat again! The photos do not do it justice at all. (Its hard to get a good photo when everyone just wants to eat the food right away!!)
Her addition was: Cheddar Cheese.
Mama's turn. Again, another over achiever in the kitchen, Trishie created 3 dishes to share with us. Beginning with,
Trishie's Pork Escalopes in a Rosemary infused Cream Sauce, served with,
Trishie's Rosemary Roasted Baby Potatoes & Shallots, and the dessert offering being,
Trishie's Pineapple & Mango Sorbet. Sounds like a lip-smacking dinner to me! In her words:
DH kept making Mmmm...mmmm..... noises eating his dinner and he said the sauce was delicious (it really was). Again something that we would all eat and I will certainly be making this again!!
We had fun in the kitchen all afternoon making and creating and helping each other with our dishes. Isn't this what it's all about? Additions were: Sugar & egg white.
After an action packed last few weeks, I knew we could count on
redneck gramma to race back home and get in on the action before the deadline. I, for one am so glad she was able to remember us and squeeze in this challenge during this very busy time for her. She made,
Gang-Up Grilling Palooza Look, more sticks! Please make sure you stop by and read her recipe description. If you are a member in good standing of the recipe/ calorie police,
keep on going. In her words: delish. RNG, is a woman of few words. Her additions are: soy sauce & dill. Nice job ma'am and thanks for stopping in.
Now, the man of the hour and the closest thing we probably have to a classically trained chef here on AR, is our own
Ken from Ca. Another first timer and a very welcome addition to the group. I've often thought that his wife is probably the luckiest woman in California. This guy does it all. Ken's premier entry is
Rosemary Pork Skewers with Mango Cream & Roasted Fingerling and Mango Shallot Salad (try saying that 5 times fast) Funny how the last 3 entries all involved spears. In reference to the combo of the salad ingredients, in his own words:
It added a nice bright acidity to the whole thing. My daughter and wife were picking away at it before I could get it on the the table and devoured a whole skewer and salad LOL! Changes made: left out the pineapple and added chili paste.
Okay just when you thought you had seen enough of my family, we have one last new member to join us. Meet
MsDo This beautiful young lady is my son's girlfriend, and can she cook :) She too, is a newbie to the challenge and with a little prodding, decided to give it a go. She made ....guess what?? More food on sticks!!
Tropical Kabobs and
Jalapeno-Rosemary alfredo sauce for dipping, and Roasted Rosemary Parmesan Potatoes everything looks wonderful. In her words:
The list of ingredients are a great seasonal bunch of things to work with. It's very fitting to use both fruit and meat, and savory herbs right now when everything is in season. This is not something I would have thought to make had it not been for
the challenge, it forced me to think outside the box. Additions were: Jalapenos & Parmesan.
That leaves only one more contestant. Moi. Avon I had several ideas floating around in my noggin and decided that I wanted to keep my creation simple. Something warm, something like comfort
food. Perfect. Only thing is, I made a dish that would be perfect for Oregon weather 335 days out of the year. I opted to use up one of the remaining 30 days of nice weather and chain myself to the kitchen in 90 degree weather with the stove and oven on. Great
if you have air conditioning, but I don't. Story of my life. Oh well.....Here's what I made and this is for you Gitano
(get away to the) COTTAGE Pie
and for the use of the fruit, I made a simple little drink on the order of a lassi but something I named
PMS (pineapple, mango smoothie) Additions were: dijon mustard and vanilla yogurt
Once again, I would like to thank everyone that took the time to try this challenge by thinking up something new and different. Everyone put their thinking caps on. In my little reminders about doing this challenge, I made the
comment, "who needs the Food Network? We have our own stars!" It's been great fun and hopefully we have inspired some of you to try some of these recipes. Until we meet again, which will most likely be in September, let me leave you with the words of Julia
Child...Bon Appetit !