Get Off The Couch and Cook

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Patatas Alioli aka Aioli Potatoes


Potatoes are roasted for a slight twist on this Spanish side dish or tapas where cooled potatoes, which are traditionally boiled, are tossed with homemade aioli.


Happy Secret Recipe Day!

This month I was assigned Manu’s Menu which made me excited.  I already had a ton of her recipes in my Recipes to Try notebook and that was before I even knew she was part of the SRC, too!

Manu, short for Manuela, is an Italian-born Sicilian living in Australia with her Indian husband with their Aussie-born daughters so they are truly, in her words, a multi-cultural family.  This and the fact that she has traveled all over the world is as apparent in her food as her love of cooking so I enjoy reading through her blog.


I ultimately decided to make her Patatas Alioli or aioli potatoes for my Secret Recipe choice which includes her homemade aioli.  So it’s kind of 2 recipes in 1!

The potatoes are traditionally boiled but since Mr. O isn’t a fan of the texture of boiled potatoes once they have cooled, I opted to roast them instead.  I really enjoyed the Spanish version of aioli which uses the whole egg instead of just the yolk so it was a little fluffier, a little lighter.

I didn’t let the potatoes cool completely, though, so the aioli didn’t stick as well as it should have but they were still just as tasty!  Especially once they cooled. 🙂



5.0 from 1 reviews
Patatas Alioli aka Aioli Potatoes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Makes: 4-6 servings
  • 2 lb russet potatoes, cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the aioli
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp jarred minced garlic (or 1-2 whole cloves fresh garlic, sliced)
  • 1 c olive oil, divided
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2-3 pinches kosher salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 425º. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment or aluminum foil.
  2. Place the potatoes in a large bowl and toss with 1 Tbsp olive oil, a huge pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Spread on the prepared pan and roast for 45-50 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, add the egg, garlic, 2 Tbsp of the olive oil and a pinch of salt in a blender. Blend until smooth. While the blender is still running, drizzle in the rest of the oil slowly. (I put mine in an empty squeeze bottle to control the drizzle.) Keep blending until all of the oil is incorporated then drizzle in the lemon juice. Taste and add more salt as needed.
  4. Scrape into a bowl with a lid and refrigerate until needed.
  5. Once the potatoes are golden brown and are cooked all the way through, remove them from the oven and let set for about 10-15 minutes until cool.
  6. Toss the potatoes with the aioli and serve.
Adapted slightly from Manu's Menu


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Hello, all!  I’m taking a much needed mini break but never fear!  Mr. O has something he wants to say. 🙂


Hey all!  Slight interruption to your regularly scheduled blog.  Sashi has given me, Mr. Onion-Hater, this space to talk about something near and dear to my heart.


Some of you may have noticed that we eat a lot of pork in our household.  It’s probably both of our favorite protein due to both its flavor (duh) as well as its versatility.  Sometimes we’ll have some variation of pork multiple times throughout the work week!  These are good weeks in my books!

I wanted  to take this time to give you all a new look at Sashi’s pork recipes through a new palette and count down for you my top ten pork recipes on this blog!


Number 10:  Mexican Pork Stew

This slightly spicy dish caused a bit of ruckus at our place when it was served.  Sashi made this wonderful stew and I was convinced that it needed to be served over tostadas.  She put hers into a bowl and I put mine over crunchy corn tostadas, we garnished them the same, we tried them both individually, and came to the decision that. . .  This stuff is just really tasty regardless of serving options!


Number 9:  Tres Cerditos

I like to think of myself as a purist in some ways.  Some foods you either do RIGHT or you don’t do at all. So I was a skeptical Onion-Hater when Sashi told me that she wanted to “do a play on Cuban sammiches”.  I was more than skeptical some would say.  Borderline angry even.   Then she told me what she was thinking and changed my mind completely!  Hands down a delicious sandwich and a wonderful spin on an old favorite.



Number 8:  Hoisin Pulled Pork

This pork dish had me drooling for hours before it was finished cooking.  I’ve always been a fan of Sashi’s hoisin sauce, I’m pretty sure it’d make my boots taste awesome in fact, but when you slow cook it with pork and let all the flavors develop over the course of most of a day?  Yeah, there’s no way that turns out bad!



Number 7: Bacon Pineapple Upside Down Cake – Revisited

I’m going to selfishly insert myself here and say that this is one recipe that, while it was on her radar for a while, Sashi ended up making because of me.  Both versions!  My favorite type of cake, when it is called for, is pineapple upside down cake.  Has been since I was a wee lad forever ago.  And when she’d asked me about maybe making me a birthday cake, I laughingly said bacon-flavored pineapple upside down cake!  She didn’t even blink before answering “I can do that!”  The rest, as they say, is delicious history!



Number 6:  BLT Salad with Chicken

I have a confession to make. I, a confirmed carnivore and manliest of manly men that has ever manned a thing, really love salads.  Seriously I do!  I know that there are some silly guys out there that want to snicker or giggle at that, but the truth is they’re good food when done right.  This salad hits all the right notes of being light, yet filling, creamy yet tart, salty yet savory.  This is my go to salad meal in the summer.



Number 5:  Omnomnom

I could wax poetic about how addictive this stuff is for a while.  I could do that.  But, honestly, calling Omnomnom “addictive” would be like calling heroin “habit forming”.  The phrase doesn’t do it justice.  Hell, you can see my hand in the picture of this post as I’m trying to steal some!



Number 4:  Thai-inspired Pork Lettuce Wraps

Sashi eats her food in an order.  Meaning all of one thing, than all of the next thing, and so on throughout the meal.  Nothing wrong with that.  It’s cute, and works for her.  My first bite of this dish I forced her to break her pattern and try these Pork Wraps!  I couldn’t allow her to wait until she was done with something else on her plate first, she HAD to eat these ASAP!  I still feel this strongly about them after the many times we’ve made them.  They really are that good.


Chickrn Alambre

Number 3: Chicken Alambre

This is one of those few dishes that I wasn’t sold on until Sashi started cooking it and I could smell it.  Now I don’t understand my hesitation!  I mean what’s not to love here?!  Bacon, Chicken, Cheese, chorizo.  Enough said.



Number 2:  Slow-Cooker Carnitas

I have a weakness for carnitas.  I’ll admit it.  They are one of the foods that always sound good to me.  Breakfast? Sure!  Lunch? Of course! Dinner? Don’t mind if I do! Midnight snack? Obviously! I’m pretty sure that I could figure out a way to snuggle a tortilla or two of them when I sleep as well if I put my mind to it.  So when Sashi said she could kill two birds with one stone by fulfilling her Secret Recipe Club assignment AND let me gorge myself on carnitas I was a very happy man.  This recipe made her win that month’s SRC.


sweet italian sausage

Number 1: Cheater Cheater!!

I’m going to cheat here a little for my favorite pork dish on this site.  I’m going to cheat by picking Sashi’s Sweet Italian Sausage.  This stuff is so easy to put together, literally takes me 5 minutes now, and is (in my opinion) some of the most versatile stuff that it just rocks.

Let me state my case here.

Take Sausage & Cheese Stuffed Mini Peppers.  By themselves one of the best hand’s on food for appetizers, a passing dish, a potluck, or a tailgate, no question.  They work because of the sausage.

How about the Meatball Subs?  The addition of this sausage brings the ‘balls to a whole new level of flavor!

Sweet Italian sausage can make a so-so pasta dish sing with depths of flavor, make a not so amazing pizza wake up and surprise you, and even make a leftover hash better than the originals it was made out of!

So, sure, it might just be an ingredient in other pork recipes, but there’s no question that her version of sweet Italian sausage is my favorite pork recipe on this site.

Chocolate Chip Bread #Choctoberfest

chocolate-chip-bread-titleA fluffy vanilla bread with chocolate chips… it’s like a cookie and cake in one!

I don’t think I’ve ever had so many baked goods in my place at once with the exception of the holidays.  But #Choctoberfest from The PinterTest Kitchen and Imperial Sugar as certainly made it feel like a holiday.  And I’m more than okay with that!

Winners are being chosen on Monday morning so make sure you click here to enter the giveaway!  There are lots of good prizes from multiple sponsors.

Here’s a reminder of the prizes:


Just like with the Mexican Chocolate Bread, I used the sugar that Imperial Sugar sent me but this is still my post with my recipe.  It was fun being part of an event with a sponsor like that; it was definitely a first for me and I enjoyed the excitement from the rest of the bloggers.

Be sure to check out the recipes others posted today after the recipe for this delicious dessert quick bread!


Chocolate Chip Bread
  • 1½ c bread flour
  • ¾ c white wheat flour (or all-purpose flour)
  • 1¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ c chocolate chips
  • ¼ c sour cream
  • ¼ c canola oil
  • ¾ c sugar (I used Imperial Sugar)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ tsp vanilla
  • ¾ c milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Spray 9" x 5" loaf pan with cooking spray. Line with parchment, leaving an overhang on 2 sides. Coat paper with spray; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder and salt. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the sour cream and oil. Whisk in the sugar followed by the eggs then the vanilla and milk.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and fold until just mixed. Do not over mix!
  5. Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake 45-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Let cool for 1 hour. Remove from the pan using the paper. Set on a rack and cool completely before cutting.

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Chocolaty Peanut Granola Bars #Choctoberfest

chocolaty-chocolate-peanut-granola-bars-titleChocolaty and chewy without being overly sweet… it’s hard to decide if these are junk food or a decadent healthy snack!


Granola bars are something I’ve toyed with making for a while now so when the #Chocotober event came along, I figured this would be the perfect time to give them a try!

The peanuts and peanut butter give a nice dose of protein while the oats are a good source of fiber so these bars are actually quite filling and make for a good energizing snack.


Because we are dark chocolate junkies, I used dark chocolate chips but please feel free to use semi sweet or milk chocolate if that is your preference.  That would certainly make these sweeter as well.

The next time I make them… and I will… I want to use a semi-sweet chocolate because these are little too dry for me but Mr. O seems to really like them with the dark chocolate.

Don’t forget to sign up for #Choctoberfest giveaway!


Like my fancy schmancy drizzling?  No matter how much I practiced, I could get a single one to have a uniform, pretty pattern but at least they still tasted good.  Again, you could use another type of chocolate for the drizzle but I had some white on hand and figured the contrast would look better for the pics.

You can also see my unsteady hand more clearly.  🙂

Chocolaty Peanut Granola Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Makes: 16 bars
  • 3 c old fashioned oats
  • 1¼ c unsalted dry roasted peanuts
  • 1¼ c sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 c honey
  • 6 Tbsp (1/4 c + 2 Tbsp) peanut butter
  • ¼ c canola oil
  • ½ c chocolate chips
  • ½ c white chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 325º. Spray 9x13 pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Line large rimmed baking sheet with foil. Add oats, peanuts and coconut. Mix to combine. Bake 15 minutes, stirring once about halfway though, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and pour in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the honey, peanut butter and oil. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until it begins to boil. Simmer, stirring constantly, 1 min. Pour in the chocolate - but do not stir - and remove the pan from the heat. Let sit 1 min and stir to blend in the chocolate well.
  4. Pour over the oat mix and stir to combine well. Spoon into the prepared 9x13 pan. Spray one side of a large piece of foil with cooking spray (I reused the one from toasting the oats) and place coated-side down over the mix. Press firmly with a potholder into an even thickness.
  5. Remove the foil and bake 10 minutes.
  6. Let cool completely for at least an hour before cutting into 16 bars.
  7. Melt the white chocolate in a small sauce pan over the lowest heat setting possible, stirring constantly until almost no lumps remain, about 1 min. Remove from the heat and stir until smooth. Drizzle over the bars and let cool.

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Mexican Chocolate Bread + #Choctoberfest Giveaway


Cinnamon and hint of ancho chile powder give this dark chocolate dessert bread a rich warmth.  Serve it with vanilla bean ice cream for an even more decadent treat!

I am taking part this week in a fun blogging event from The PinterTest Kitchen called Choctoberfest sponsored by Imperial Sugar  Below is more information about this event with my first recipe for the week to follow.  Be sure to sign up for the giveaways!


#Choctoberfest is a virtual event put together by The PinterTest Kitchen. Bloggers from around the world will be posting their favorite chocolate recipes, and you’ll get a chance to win some awesome prizes. What’s not to love?

Here’s what this event is all about!

#Choctoberfest would not be possible without our sponsors, starting with our 2015 Gold Sponsor, Imperial Sugar. Imperial Sugar has been a trusted name in family kitchens since 1843. Their sugar products and sweeteners are made from non-GMO cane sugar and ensure consistently delicious results. We’ll be using Imperial Sugar whenever we use sugar in our recipes this week, and can’t wait to share the sweetness with you!

You can find Imperial Sugar on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and more. Make sure you visit the recipes section of their website for some sweet inspiration, and you can also find coupons on their website if you want to try out Imperial Sugar yourself.

Imperial Sugar and the other sponsors have banded together to contribute some awesome prizes for our #Choctoberfest giveaway! Entering is simple – just click the link below to follow us on Pinterest. Here’s what you could win:

There is also a nonprofit sponsor this year – Rescue Chocolate! They make vegan chocolate treats and donate 100% of their proceeds to animal shelters.

Enter now to win the #Choctoberfest prize. Hurry, because we’re picking the winner on October 12 at 8:00 AM, so if you don’t sign up before then, you’ll miss your chance!

Click here for the #Chocotoberfest giveaway

A huge thank you to all of the other blogs participating in #Choctoberfest 2015. Check out their blogs throughout the week for chocolate recipes you won’t be able to resist:

The PinterTest Kitchen2 Cookin’ MamasA Day in the Life on the FarmAloha FlavorAmy’s Cooking AdventuresAngels HomesteadBalancing MotherhoodBless this MessBusy-at-HomeChocolate SlopesCoconut & LimeColie’s KitchenCookaholic WifeCooking In StilettosCooking With LibbyCookistryCopyKat RecipesCravings of a LunaticCrumbs in my MustachioCulinary CoutureCupcakes Take The CakeDeliciously SavvyEat It & Say YumFairyburgerFamished Fish, Finicky SharkFarm Fresh FeastsFood Hunter’s Guide to CuisineFull Belly SistersGet Off The Couch and CookGrumpy’s HoneybunchHey What’s for Dinner Mom?Honey and BirchI Can Cook ThatJane’s Adventures in DinnerJessie WeaverLife on Food Life, Love, and Good FoodMajorly DeliciousMoore or Less Cooking Food BlogMother Would KnowOr Whatever You DoPoet in the PantryRecipes Food and CookingRhubarb and HoneySassy Southern YankeeSavory TartSeduction in The KitchenSerena LissySumptuous SpoonfulsTake Two TapasThat Skinny Chick Can BakeThatsSoYummyThe Chonchudo FilesThe Crumby CupcakeThe Dinner-MomThe Saucy SouthernerThe Spiced LifeThe Spiffy CookieThe Two Bite ClubThe Weekday GourmetVintage KittyWendy PolisiWhat A Girl EatsWhitBit’s Indian KitchenWit Wisdom & FoodZesty South Indian Kitchen

Are you a blogger who is interested in joining The PinterTest Kitchen during their next community event?

Sign up here now!

They’ll make sure you get an email about their next blogger event.


In the spirit of full disclosure, I did receive a huge box filled with sugar from Imperial Sugar for this event but all opinions are, of course, 100% my own.

Now… on to the awesome dessert bread recipe!


Mexican Chocolate Bread
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Makes: 1 loaf
  • 1½ c sour cream
  • ½ c canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ c white wheat flour (or substitute all-purpose flour)
  • ¾ c all-purpose flour
  • ¾ c sugar (I used Imperial Sugar)
  • ¼ c dark cocoa powder
  • ½ c dark chocolate chips
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ancho chile powder (1½ tsp if you want more heat)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Spray a 9"x5" loaf pan with cooking spray. Line the pan with parchment, leaving 2 sides to overhang. Spray the parchment with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the sour cream, oil, eggs and vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl, stir together the flours, sugar, cocoa powder, chocolate chips, cinnamon, chile powder, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.
  4. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir gently until just mixed. Be careful to not overmix!
  5. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Let cool in the pan for at least an hour before removing from the pan to let cook completely.

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Chicken Noodle Soup (Made from scratch!)


When it comes to simple, healthy AND comforting, soup is a go-to for a lot of people.  Here, the broth is made while cooking the chicken so no worries about the high sodium you get in the canned versions.


Remember when I told you about the amazing deal I got on some whole chickens?  This is what I did with the other one that didn’t end up in the freezer.

For those paying attention at home, I am not a fan of broth-based soups.  It’s strictly a visual thing for me but hearing a coworker talk about her love of soup got me to wondering if I could make a chicken noodle soup myself that did not offend the link between my eyes and stomach.


I also wanted to make sure it wasn’t going to be high in sodium for Mr. O so that left canned chicken broth out of the question, even the low sodium stuff.  In my mind, I figured I could make my own broth while cooking the chicken which would give me complete control.  I also had to make sure I used a large pasta so it wouldn’t look pre-chewed and I really needed there to be a high-good stuff to low-broth ratio.

After popping by several recipes online, I finally came up with a game plan to make a chicken noodle soup that, hopefully, wouldn’t turn me off visually.  Or, at the very least, making it myself would help me get past that.


I am happy to report that I succeeded!  🙂

There was A LOT of chicken and the campanelle pasta that I chose was the perfect choice for me.  You can easily use whatever you like best, though.  Just adjust the cooking time accordingly.  I do wish I had had more veg to add to the soup but I’ll just do that next time.  The broth itself was also just a tad more thick thanks for the flour and butter cooked with the vegetables.

Now, from a sodium standpoint, it may seem like a lot when you read through the original recipe.  But this makes about 20 cups which works out to less than 225mg per cup which is less than half that in most low-sodium canned chicken noodle soup.  So it’s tasty AND not bad for you.  Yay!


We actually had this for dinner on a Sunday but I made it the Saturday before to be reheated on Sunday.   It tasted so much better after sitting for 24 hours!  And it reheated so easily.  I even reheated it in the microwave at work for lunch during the week.

See?  There ARE some foods that even I won’t eat cold. 🙂

Chicken Noodle Soup (Made from scratch!)
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Makes: 20 ~ 1 cup servings
For the broth
  • ½ lb carrots, washed with peels on and cut into large chunks
  • 3 ribs of celery, cut into large chunks
  • 1 head of garlic, cloves separated and peeled and cut in half
  • 6-7 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 2-4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • ½ c semi-firmly packed parsley leaves
  • 12-14 black peppercorns
  • 5-6 lb whole chicken
  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt
  • 16 c (4 quarts) hot tap water
For the soup
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • ½ lb carrots, peeled and cut into ¼" slices
  • 3 ribs celery, cut into ¼" slices
  • 6 Tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 16 oz pasta
Make the broth and cook the chicken
  1. In a large stock pot or Dutch oven, add the large chunks of carrots and celery and the garlic. Take the springs of rosemary and thyme and rub them a few times between the palms of your hands then put them in the pot with the carrots and celery. Add the parsley and peppercorns and top with the chicken. Sprinkle with chicken with the salt then slowly pour in the hot water.
  2. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over high. Reduce the heat and keep at a hard simmer for 90 minutes.
  3. Remove the chicken to a platter using 2 large forks and let the chicken cool.
  4. Place a sieve over a large bowl and slowly pour the broth through the sieve to catch the large pieces, Discard the solid pieces from the broth. Let sit for about 20 minutes,
  5. Using your fingers, remove the skin and bones from the chicken and shredded the remaining meaty pieces. Set aside.
  6. Skim off and discard any fat from the top of the broth.
  7. Wipe out the stock pot and return to medium heat. Melt the butter in the stock pot.
  8. Add the sliced carrots and celery to the butter and stir to coat. Cook, stirring occasionally until just starting to soften.
  9. Stir in the flour and stir constantly for 1-2 minutes or until the flour is smooth and golden around the vegetables. Slowly stir in the broth and stir until well incorporated. Cover the pot and turn the heat up to high.
  10. As soon as the broth begins to boil, add the remaining 1 tsp of salt along with the pasta and reserved shredded chicken. Cover until the soup begins to boil. Uncover and cook for the amount of time of the pasta package or until the pasta is tender.
  11. Refrigerate any leftovers
To reheat: pour the chicken into a large saucepan and heat over med-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the soup is heated through, about 5-7 minutes


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