Monday, January 3, 2011

Pork Roast Pasta and Some Hair...

I'm not a New Years resolution type of person.  I never stick to them so I never make them.  But when the new year comes around, I do reflect on the past few years to determine which areas of my life needs more paying attention to.  And starting this Monday, Chris and I are back onto our healthy living routine.  We've slacked off the last few weeks due to the holiday season (and my waistline is really mad at me) so tonight is the start of our new Biggest Loser game work out routine on the Kinect.  I'll be back with a special blog about that later when we've actually tried it a few times, but tonight, I bring you a quick and simple recipe.

This past weekend, Chris' mom made a pork pot roast.  Cooking with pork is so simple because you really don't need many seasonings but salt and pepper.  Slow roasting the pork itself brings out its natural juices and flavors.  My mother-in-law roasted the pork with celery, potatoes, and carrots.  We had some leftovers so I decided to turn this into a quick and easy pasta dish.

First I chopped up some onions and jalapenos.  Now if you know me, you'll know that I cook with onions and jalapenos a lot.  I love these two veggies combined together, plus they're healthy so you'll see these two ingredients a lot.
I chopped up the pork roast into bite sized pieces.
Sautee the onions, jalapenos and pork together in some Pam (if you have it) or vegetable oil.
Next comes the sauce.  My favorite premade sauce, believe it or not, is Prego.  If I had time, I'd choose to make my own pasta sauce, but that takes forever!  So Prego is the next best thing.  I dumped this sauce into the sauteeing onion, jalapeno and pork mixture above and let everything simmer.
I always add my own ingredients to premade sauces.  I typically put Italian seasoning, a dash of Johnny seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper for spice.  I don't use measurements and never have.  Just taste and adjust based on your liking.
This little thing is the secret to my pasta sauces.  When I cook pasta sauce for people, they always ask what that little extra hint of something is but they can never put a finger on it.  It's star anise!  I know it's unheard of to put star anise into tomato sauce, but if you think about, it makes sense.  I'm not a huge fan of licorice, but putting one of these in will give your sauce that extra little something.
Tonight I used a whole wheat macaroni...because that's all I had.  I don't eat any non-whole wheat pasta anymore so this elbow macaroni is one of my favorites.  Whole wheat takes less time to cook and these little babies took about 3 minutes for my el dente taste.
Once the pasta was cooked, the sauce was ready as well.  Tonight, I let the sauce simmer for about 20 minutes.  If I had the choice and time, I'd let it simmer for about 40 minutes.  The more you cook tomatoes, the tastier it gets, so don't be afraid to simmer your sauces.  Throw some Parmesan cheese on top and voila!  Dinner in less than half an hour!

Now that I'm done with dinner and feel plump for the night...I feel like I want to shower and style my hair!  I've recently purchased a Herstyler clampless curling iron and might I just say, I love it!  I've always been a klutz when it came to curling my hair, not to mention my Asian stubborn tossels never want to stay curly if I'm using a conventional iron.  I know friends that use their straightener, which works fine because it's made from ceramic, I never could curl mine using a straightener without it kinking.  So, after reading some reviews online, I decided to try the Herstyler out, which is also made with ceramic.  I bought mine from Amazon and it came with changeable wands in three different sizes.  For now, I only use the largest size for a more natural looking style.

 So here's my usual straight style...
And here it is styled using the Herstyler...
Here's another look.  What do you gals think?  I just love it!  It took some adjustment (and some burning on my right cheek...ouch!!!) but I finally am able to curl my whole head in 10 - 15 minutes!  Has anyone else tried this type of hair curling iron?  What do you all think?

Have a wonderful night, everyone!


  1. I love your hair! Very well done. I always have such a hard time using any kind of equipment (curlers/straighteners/etc.). you make it sound easy!

  2. First of all, YUM! I love learning about new, easy recipes - and this is right up my alley (Dave's too - because of the jalapeno & onions). Second of all, your hair looks amazing! I too, have so much trouble curling my super thick hair and have given up trying in the past few years. I'm going to have to check out this magicical Herstyler now! Maybe there is hope?!

  3. Kristin - Thanks! Believe me, it's easier than it looks. Hehe if I can do it, anyone can!

    Aimee - BTW, don't let the price on the website I linked fool you. The one that's on the website for $250 is the one I got on Amazon for around $80! So check there first!

  4. I love your hair! Do you have to have dry hair to have it work?

  5. Unfortunately i don't eat pork, but my hubby loves it, so perhaps i will try out the recipe one day just for him.
    I know what you mean about asian hair that's impossible to curl! mine is a bit like that. I have used curling irons in the past, but they were a bit tricky!I love that touseled look that you did with your hair. It looks really natural and gives you a different look.

  6. Inkmark - Yes, your hair will need to be blow dried for the curls to look at it's best. We did it on a friend who air dried her hair and because air dried hair falls flat against your scalp, the curls just looked bad. I definitely find it best to blow dry my hair first to create volume before I curl. Don't worry, I know some asian hair don't hold if you wash your hair right before. But this one does! I was so amazed because it's ceramic.

    Jenn - Thank you! I know, I've had a lot of people ask me if I've permed my hair. Like get that new Japanese air wave perm. But of course not! I love how it's so natural looking.

  7. wow! I don't know if i've ever seen this curling iron, but your hair looks great! I love the versatility of the curls!

    I am totally trying that trick with the star anise in the pasta sauce! I love finding ways to spice up(no pun intended) standard receipes/meals!

  8. Cindi! OMG, I need to get that Herstyler...Like you I have STRAIGHT Asian hair that will not curl/hold a curl/want to curl....your hair looks GREAT! That is exactly the kind of curl I want to! Does it take a long time for you to do? Do you section off your hair first? LOL, sorry for the millions of questions, I'm just so excited about this.

  9. Pamela - You'll have to let me know how you like it. It's not for everyone but I think pasta sauce tastes way better with it!

    Gina - I don't have that much hair so I section just the top part of my hair and do the bottom first. Then let it all down and do the top part. I think it takes me about 15 minutes to do my whole head. Make sure to search through Amazon if you are thinking of getting it since it's cheaper.

  10. your hair looks fabulous! looks very natural and effortless. i'm still trying to get used to curling my hair with a flat iron. some days are better than others!

  11. wow super cute! I love the tousled hair look! I only air dry unfortunately :/