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As this challenge progresses you will quickly learn that I have two styles of cooking – very simple or extremely fussy.  For me there is no middle ground – I either need to be fed quickly (and therefore the meal will take less than 20 minutes) or I have all day to muck around in the kitchen. 

For some odd reason I seem to be picking our mid-week meals to blog about for the early part of this challenge.  This means simple dinners that I come up with by looking at what is in our fridge (as my husband asks … so what’s for dinner – do you have a plan??).  My game plan in these situations is always the same:  meat + vegetables + something interesting  = the meal.

"braising greens"

This meal follows that game plan – meat and vegetables, with oil and nuts (which were the “something interesting” for this meal).  Personally, I was quite excited to find the “braising greens” mixture at New Seasons, which are a blend of locally sourced kale, chard and other unidentified greens.  Like the mustard greens of last week – they were cooked up with a small amount of bacon.  I use locally sourced nitrate free bacon because it is less processed than regular bacon.    I use the “fact” that the bacon is nitrate free to justify having it in my paleo eating plan – but in all honesty I have what is probably an unhealthy obsession with bacon, which brings to mind this video…

Enough already about my addiction favorite food and on to this meal.  We cooked some pork brats (made fresh) with onions from Hermiston, OR and farmhouse ale brewed by my husband.  The greens were cooked with bacon and garlic and topped with locally grown hazelnuts. 

Simmering brats, onions and beer

Recipe for the Brats (greens recipe is basically the same as week one):

Heat olive oil on med-low in a cast iron skillet, add brats and beer (covering the brats).  Top with sliced onions and turn the heat to low.  Cook until beer is evaporated and brats are cooked all the way through (15-20 minutes).