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Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips  |  Lemon & Mocha

The concept of a “clean out the fridge” recipe is an interesting one because everyone has different items in their fridge. So, while this Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips dish helped me clean out my fridge, it’s so delicious that I think it deserves its own trip to the grocery store!

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips  |  Lemon & Mocha

Right before Sam was born I was itching to try a new dinner recipe. I flipped through my recipe binders and came across this weeknight meal from the Food Network Magazine. I had bought pork chops with the intention of making the Skillet Balsamic Peach Pork Chops with Feta and Basil since Matt and I are obsessed, but this recipe for Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips was much more seasonally appropriate. I also had leftover apricot preserves in the fridge from the Grilled Chicken with Apple and Mango Chutney and the Baked Brie Fruit and Nut Tartlets. The pork chops are marinated in the preserves, Worcestershire sauce and seasonings before being broiled.

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips  |  Lemon & Mocha

While the pork chops are flavorful and tender, the real standout are the baked apples slathered with apricot preserves and the roasted parsnip, turnip and red onion medley. I’ve baked apples into chips and I’ve baked them into dessert egg rolls, but I’ve never roasted whole apples. The apricot preserves brought a great brightness and sweetness to them that helped balance the savory flavors of the pork and root vegetables.

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips  |  Lemon & Mocha

And those root vegetables! I love a good roasted veggie and these parsnips, turnips and red onion chunks just melt in your mouth!

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips  |  Lemon & Mocha

This is a quick and easy dinner recipe that I’ll definitely be making all winter long. Enjoy!

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips  |  Lemon & Mocha

Pork Chops with Baked Apples, Parsnips and Turnips
 
Yield: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 medium turnip, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
  • ½ red onion, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 2 small apples, such as Gala, halved and seeded
  • ¼ cup apricot preserves
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
  • 4 boneless pork loin chops, ½-inch thick
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with nonstick aluminum foil and place the parsnips, turnips and onion on it. Drizzle with the olive oil, toss, then sprinkle with the rosemary and season generously with salt and pepper. Place the apple halves, cut side up, on the baking sheet nestled between the veggies. Divide 2 tablespoons of the apricot preserves between the apple halves and brush over top then season lightly with black pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft. Turn the oven to broil and broil for 5 minutes, or until everything is golden brown.
  3. While the veggies are cooking, marinate the pork. In a shallow bowl or plastic container large enough to fit the pork, whisk together the remaining 2 tablespoons of apricot preserves, the Worcestershire sauce, sage and ½ cup water. Season with a little black pepper. Pierce the pork chips all over with a fork then add to the bowl and marinate for 10 minutes.
  4. Set a wire cooling rack into a rimmed baking sheet and place the pork chops on top, reserving the marinade. Season the pork chops with salt and pepper. Broil the pork chops for 4-5 minutes per side, or until they reach an internal temperature of 145 degrees F. Remove from the oven and let the pork rest while you finish the sauce.
  5. Pour the reserved marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue to boil until thickened, about 3-4 minutes. Whisk in the tablespoon of butter until melted. Serve the pork alongside the vegetables and apples with the sauce drizzled over top.

 Recipe from January/February 2016 issue of Food Network Magazine.

Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

A Look Back on 2019

A Look Back on 2019  |  Lemon & Mocha

Well, everyone, it’s time to say goodbye to 2019! As I sit here on the eve of a new year I am so grateful to have spent another year sharing my passions for cooking and writing here with you all on Lemon & Mocha. Whether you are a family member, friend, fellow blogger, recipe seeker, Pinterest pro, or all of the above, I am so thankful for your support and presence here! On a personal note, 2019 brought both great highs and deep lows for my family with the birth of our son, Sam (more on that further down!), and on the loss of Diane’s mom (Nina to me) this past fall.

Nina had a sweet tooth so I think she would approve of 2019 on Lemon & Mocha being dubbed the year of cookies! Between the Food Network Magazine’s Calendar of Cookies and the first annual Lemon & Mocha’s 12 Days of Cookies this holiday season, there were twenty-one new cookie recipes posted on the blog this year. It’s hard to know where to start so I’d suggest quickly whipping up a batch of the Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies to snack on while you contemplate which cookie recipe to bake next. As much as I love sweets, the top ten list of most popular new posts from 2019 made it pretty clear that easy and healthy dinner recipes are a favorite category here on Lemon & Mocha. I already have a few in the works for the new year and I’ll be sure to work on even more for you all. Here are the top ten most popular new posts from this past year:

10. Skillet Balsamic Peach Pork Chops with Feta and Basil

Skillet Balsamic Peach Pork Chops with Feta and Basil  |  Lemon & Mocha

9. Cheesy Barbecue Chicken Puff Pastry Bites

Cheesy Barbecue Chicken Puff Pastry Bites  |  Lemon & Mocha

8. Skinny Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole

Skinny Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole  |  Lemon & Mocha

7. Balsamic Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Gorgonzola and Walnuts

Balsamic Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Gorgonzola and Walnuts  |  Lemon & Mocha

6. Tuna Melt Egg Rolls

Tuna Melt Egg Rolls  |  Lemon & Mocha

5. Parmesan Crusted Brussels Sprouts

Parmesan Crusted Brussels Sprouts  |  Lemon & Mocha

4. Healthy Spinach, Goat Cheese and Quinoa Egg Muffins

Healthy Spinach, Goat Cheese and Quinoa Egg Muffins  |  Lemon & Mocha

3. Potato, Leek and Bacon Pizza

Potato, Leek and Bacon Pizza  |  Lemon & Mocha

2. Birch Benders Pancakes Four Ways

Birch Benders Pancakes Four Ways

1. Sheet Pan Parmesan Roasted Green Beans and Baby Potatoes

Sheet Pan Parmesan Roasted Green Beans and Baby Potatoes  |  Lemon & Mocha

Welcome sweet Sam

A Look Back on 2019  |  Lemon & Mocha

Although it may have been the year of cookies here on Lemon & Mocha, my 2019 was definitely the year of Sam. We spent almost all year preparing for his arrival and Matt and I welcomed our sweet boy, Sam, on November 7th! That morning our hearts exploded with more love than I could ever imagine and ever since it’s been an incredible whirlwind of love, amazement, cuddles – and of course sleepless nights! I don’t like to divulge too much of my personal life on this public space so in 2020 I will have to continue working on that balance in my writing. It would be too difficult to write from my heart and not include the little guy who has it completely wrapped around his tiny little fingers! I wish you all a happy and healthy New Year and I look forward to sharing more recipes and stories with you in 2020!

Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail  |  Lemon & Mocha

Hi, friends! For those of you that celebrate, I hope you had a wonderful Christmas! I wanted to pop on here real quick to share one final recipe before the end of the year. This simple Roasted Shrimp Cocktail recipe is the perfect party appetizer so I’m sharing it just in time for those of you that have New Year’s celebration plans. For those of you that won’t be cooking party appetizers, this is still a great one to have in your back pocket.

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail  |  Lemon & Mocha

It’s also so delicious that sometimes I just make it for Matt and I for dinner along with a salad! This recipe is simply shrimp cocktail kicked up a notch. Roasting tends to bring out extra flavor and as Ina Garten lets us know in her Back to Basics cookbook, shrimp are no exception.

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail  |  Lemon & Mocha

The shrimp get briefly roasted with some olive oil, salt and pepper before being left to cool and served with cocktail sauce. That’s it! It sounds so simple (because it is), but I promise you everyone will be raving over this easy appetizer.

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail  |  Lemon & Mocha

Diane has been making this Roasted Shrimp Cocktail for years; it’s a staple at all our family gatherings and sunset watching cocktail hours when we visit my parents down in Florida. I’ve recently started incorporating it into my menus when we have family and friends over and I don’t know why I didn’t do it sooner because it seriously is the easiest and tastiest dish to put out.

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail  |  Lemon & Mocha

I hope you all enjoy this one! Have a great weekend!

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail  |  Lemon & Mocha

Roasted Shrimp Cocktail
 
Yield: 4-6 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds jumbo shrimp (raw, peeled and deveined with tails on)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • Cocktail sauce, for serving
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Place the shrimp on a sheet pan and toss with the olive oil. Season with the salt and pepper and spread them out so they’re in a single layer. Roast the shrimp for 8-10 minutes. They should have just turned pink and firm and be cooked through. Set aside to cool.
  3. Serve at room temperature with the cocktail sauce. If you cooked them earlier in the day and had them in the fridge, let sit out for 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe from Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics.
Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

The day is finally here for the last recipe in our 12 Days of Cookies! These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies are one of the easiest and there is no dough chilling required. Since we’re so close to the holiday and if you’re like me you’re probably busy with a million things while also trying to soak up time with your family so I’ll keep today’s post short and sweet.

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Having a go-to peanut butter cookie recipe is a staple and I’ve finally found mine! I find a lot of peanut butter cookies deliver on the peanut butter flavor, but are too crumbly. I prefer a cookie that is soft and chewy. These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies have brown sugar in the cookie dough, which helps bring that chewy texture.

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Rolling the cookie dough balls in granulated sugar gives them an added little bit of sweetness and shimmer as they spread out during the baking

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

The original recipe calls for them to be done around ten minutes, but I found mine needed closer to thirteen minutes. They do firm up a little after baking, but I love the chewy texture from these peanut butter-packed cookies.

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy holidays, everyone!

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies
 
Yield: 18-20 cookies
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons butter (1 stick), room temperature
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter (not natural)
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar, plus extra for rolling the cookie dough balls
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl with a hand mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and peanut butter until creamy and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla. Beat until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat on low until just a few streaks remain.
  4. Put some granulated sugar in a small bowl. Use a medium cookie scoop to scoop out a dough ball then roll in the granulated sugar. Place on the prepared baking sheet and repeat for the remaining dough. Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until the edges are very lightly brown and they’ve just started to set. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then remove to a wire cooling rack to finish cooling. Repeat for the second baking sheet of cookies.

Recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod.

Cherry Kiss Cookies

Cherry Kiss Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy Friday! Here we are at day eleven of Lemon & Mocha’s 12 Days of Cookies and I’ve definitely been saving some of the best for last. First of all, let’s just discuss how pretty these Cherry Kiss Cookies are! With their pink hue they certainly would be fitting for Valentine’s Day, but they also add a great pop of color to a Christmas cookie platter.

Cherry Kiss Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

If there was ever a cookie to be described as melting in your mouth, it would be these pillowy Cherry Kiss Cookies. They are soft, buttery and have just the perfect amount of cherry flavoring. There’s also a chocolate Hershey Kiss in the center of every cookie, which is always a delicious bonus.

Cherry Kiss Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

The cherry flavor in these cookies comes from cherry extract and chopped maraschino cherries, both which get mixed right into the batter. If you remember my Chocolate Raspberry Heart Cookie Pops I had a difficult time finding cherry extract in the grocery store so instead I used raspberry extract. Since I now have a big bottle of raspberry extract from those cookie pops I actually used it instead of cherry extract for these cookies as well. So I guess they are technically Cherry Raspberry Kiss Cookies. Either way you make them I’m sure you will be hooked. I saved these for right before Christmas because the dough requires no chilling and they’re very easy drop cookies to make so they would be a great last minute baking project.

Cherry Kiss Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

The cookies look very soft when they come out of the oven, but they will firm up as they cool. I left mine in the oven until I noticed just a couple of the cookies had started to very lightly brown on the edges, which can be difficult to notice at first since the cookies are pink.

Cherry Kiss Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

I used milk chocolate kisses since that is what I had on hand, but you could experiment with different kinds as I think the dark chocolate kisses would be extra tasty in these. Okay, only a few more days until Christmas! What are you baking this weekend?

Cherry Kiss Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Cherry Kiss Cookies
 
Yield: 28 cookies
Ingredients
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks), room temperature
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1½ teaspoons cherry extract, see note
  • 5 drops red food coloring
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup chopped maraschino cherries
  • 28 Hershey Kisses, unwrapped
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, making sure oven racks are in the upper and lower thirds positions. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl with a hand mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter, confectioners’ sugar and salt on low speed to combine then medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla, cherry extract and food coloring. Beat until combined. Add the flour and beat on low until only a few streaks remain. Use a spatula to stir in the chopped cherries.
  3. Use a medium cookie scoop to balls of dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. I put 14 on each of my half sheet pans; the cookies spread a little, but not a lot. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a couple of the cookies just start to very lightly brown on the edges. Remove from the oven and immediately press a chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie. Once the cookies have cooled for 2 minutes on the pan, remove to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
Notes
If you don’t have cherry extract, raspberry extract also works really well.

Recipe adapted from Taste of Home.