Pork Chops & Pasta

So someone once told me if I was ever unsure of a recipe, just simmer some garlic so it smells like you know what you're doing. I pretty much do this every time I cook. I don't know that I ever make anything without a little garlic. It's like instant confidence. I AM Rachael Ray. 

We have been following a new guideline lately in the household, cutting out added sugar, super processed food, dairy, gluten, soy, and I think that's it...  But after those items are omitted from your daily diet- you realize how many foods aren't an option any more. It definitely makes you super aware of WHAT is in your food. So now I'm an expert label reader. And Rachael Ray.

Instead of crying about what we "can't have" I've just been super determined to create awesome swaps for stuff we used to eat. Example- this super awesome pasta I made the other night. A good, thick, creamy pasta, is a must in this house, The best alternative I've found so far is the Diaya brand Alfredo sauce. But I jazz it up a little. 

So after I have everyone convinced I know what I'm doing (with a little olive oil and garlic simmering in the pan) I do this not so fantastic magic trick, where I add a whole tub of spinach to the pan (low heat!!). Watch as this amazing pan full of spinach wilts to nothing!! It's insane. 

Gets me every time. 

Ya know what else gets me? How incredibly fragile cooking gluten free pasta is. But I finally hacked that too. I don't know if its "the right way".. but what I've found is cook it to al dente (fancy for just shy of done) then after straining, I rinse it with cold water. I KNOW! it goes against every cooking show, and what I've been taught about cooking pasta "marrying the sauce to the noodle" with the starch... but we are dealing with gluten free noodles here and clearly they're a breed of their own. So just do it. It tastes just fine- and they live happily ever after in the sauce. Promise. 

And the magic trick is complete. Would you EVER guess that this is a WHOLE tub of spinach?! Insane. I really almost think the frozen spinach is probably more bang for your buck to be honest... 

So after the olive oil, garlic, Diaya, spinach, sun dried tomatoes, and some pepper- the sauce is ready for the al dente pasta. Fold in the spaghetti, turn off the burner, and get ready to serve!! 

Oh crap! Remember that one teacher that stressed the importance of reading through everything prior to starting the assignment?? This is that... my bad. The pork chops... the AWARD WINNING PORK CHOPS! The secret is totally the air fryer. Sorry to burst your bubble if you don't have one. Prime one, Target pickup one, borrow one.... you need one. They're fantastic. I thought they were overrated until we were gifted one from Brians mom for Christmas... and now I don't know how I lived without one.

For the seasoning I did salt, onion seasoning, garlic seasoning and paprika. I preheated the air fryer to 380* and then plopped my pork chops in for about 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through. Cook time will depend on bone and thickness obviously. Eyeball it. And when in doubt, grab a meat thermometer. Which I just snagged for super cheap... and really its one of those "officially a grownup" kinda purchases.  Voila. 

Just give me the damn recipe...

1/2 tsp salt

2tsp garlic seasoning

2tsp onion seasoning

2tsp paprika

1/2tsp pepper

1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes

1 tub of spinach

1tsp minced garlic

1 tbsp olive oil

4 pork chops (I used bone in)

diaya Alfredo Sauce Packets (usually 4 come in a box)

gluten Free Spaghetti 

  • mix seasonings together in a bowl (salt/garlic/pepper/onion/paprika)
  • sprinkle over & massage into pork chops (front & back)
  • boil pasta water
  • add olive oil & minced garlic to pan (low heat)
  • preheat air fryer to 380* 
  • add pork chops to air fryer for 10 minutes (to start, cooking times may vary)
  • add spaghetti to boiling water
  • add spinach to pan with olive oil & garlic (let wilt down) give spaghetti a stir (frequently)
  • once spinach is wilted down add 1 diaya packet & combine, stir around frequently
  • probably about time to check on those pork chops, maybe flip over (if 1/2 time has gone by)
  • add sun dried tomatoes to sauce
  • check on spaghetti again, once about al dente take out, strain, & rinse with cold water)
  • if all done, combine strained/rinsed spaghetti to sauce mixture & let finish cooking
  • remove pork chops from air fryer and serve immediately! 

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