What is a Country Style Rib? And other ponderings.

Lately I keep looking at this blog and wanting to change it. I have a feeling in the next couple of weeks it will look different. The urge to rearrange and make it more user friendly is becoming more of need than a want for me lately. I see it moving up on my to-do list. 

Lots of things are changing. I don’t know why this surprises me so much at times. Really there is no constant or normal in life. It is always changing. Change is the only thing that one can really count on. What I am use to today will be different weeks, months and years from now. I can say, “when my kids were this age (fill in the blank), it was some of the best times for our family”. But really I can say that at any time. Sure my dinner table is not filled with my kids and I ponder if we need this huge farmhouse table my husband built anymore. But now I have time to get to know this guy I have been married to for 26 year too.  It’s a different time for us. Something we have never had since we got married and then started our family.  I am also am getting to know me. I have more time to myself these days. To do those things I said I would do. To try things I thought I wouldn’t  have guessed I would do.   Change is always happening. While I love the comfort of a routine and to have those around me I love, it’s not always possible and I have to look within to find the comfort I need. To put my hopes in anyone or anything else to provide that sense of grounding is just not right. It is expecting to much of others. I am responsible for my own happiness. 

Then there is the change that comes in the stuff your use to having. Say like a gas bbq girll in the backyard.  I can’t even remember when we bought it. I know I was so excited for my husband to have such a nice grill. We had a green weber charcoal grill before that. But we were new homeowners and while the charcoal grill was great, we wanted the big silver grill in the yard as we had a large family and had their friends over a lot. Ok hoenstly I was terrified the flames form the charcoal grill being used on our decks off our kitchenw ere going to catch the wood shingles on our house on fire. So enter the gas grill and the above ground pool stage in our life. 

 Recently the grill in my opinion died. There I was looking at new grills on line when my husband walks in and says “what you doing?” I tell him and he then shares with me he ordered the parts for way less than the full cost of our girll to fix it.  The parts arrive, a trip or two to the local hardward shop for a few nuts and bolts to fix something else and viola, it’s fixed.  My husband has always been fabulous at fixing things. I’ve addmitted it was in the top five reasons for marrying him. 

Summer is that time for using the grill and cooking outside so we don’t heat up the kitchen. So this was a bit different to not have a grill to cook on. I was looking through the local grocery store flyer and saw that Country style ribs were on sale. My first thought was let’s grill those tasty suckers up. But the grill was not fixed as of yet. So I went  looking for something else. In my hunt, I discovered that country style ribs are not ribs at all.

So what are they? Well they are from the shoulder. Sometimes they have the bone in them , like I used in the recipe below, or they are boneless. They are part of the loin so really the name is Pork Loin Country Style Ribs.  I know they have great flavor and are much cheaper than ribs with more meat and well this past week they were a steal at my loal store.

With the grill broken and a hot Sunday ahead it was crockpot time. I debated tossing them in with a dry rub. Then I thought of making a sauce. My thoughts then went Asian.  I found the following recipe at Manilaspoon.com  

Everyone loved them. Which I think I have mentioned before I am now feeding a house full of guys. This was easy too. I just popped it all in before I left for Yoga class. Came home, enjoyed my day and later made up the Asian Slaw to go with it and we were sitting around the table eating before going out to garden in the cooler evening air. 

Crockpot Asian Syle BBQ Country Style Ribs

  • 3/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup of honey (real honey)
  • 1/2 cup of soy sauce or Tamari
  •  1/2 cup of ketchup ( no HFCS in it, Trader Joe’s brand organic brands don’t have HFCS in them)
  • 3 TBLS of Sweet Chili Sauce ( Again no HFCS in it)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 knob of fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tsp celtic sea salt
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes (optional but add if you want a little kick)
  • 5lbs of Country Style Pork Ribs
  1. In a bowl mix all the ingredient for the sauce together with a whisk. 
  2. Dip each rib into the sauce to get it coated and place in crockpot.
  3. Pour remaining sauce over ribs in crockpot and put the lid on it.
  4. Cook on low for 7-8 hrs.
  5. Enjoy!

Why am I saying to avoid HFCS (high fructose corn syrup).  I do it as I have an allergy to it. I get headaches, cystic like acne on my face and bad fatique from it.  BUT if you are trying to loose weight, get healtheir or just plane feel good, you should skip this crappy sweetener like it’s poison.  Simply cutting HFCS out of your diet can help you big time with weight loss.

Give it a try for a few weeks. See how you feel. I’d love to hear from you.

Blessings and good health!


Certified Holistic Helath Coach, registered with the American Association of Drugless Practritioners

Reiki Practitioner


Sunday, Sunday….my favorite homemade pancake/waffle mix

It’s been a little bit of time, I feel like,  since my last post. I got busy with the 10 Day Kick Sugar Challenge I created. The group did so well. I am proud of everyone that was a part of it. I’ll be doing another one before the summer is over so stay tuned. The recipe I am sharing today is not for those on a sugar kick. Let me start by saying that. If you are looking for a mix without added extra sugar and chemicals and are looking to bring back the family table at breakfast, keep reading.  

Recently life got busy and slightly complicated but then, a sense of familiarity washed over our home. A quiet slowness that I have not felt for the last 3 years. It was absolutly delicious. My table is full again but at the same time my husband and I have for the first time in our lives, more quiet times. Sometimes the house is full of people and it reminds me of the days I shopped at Sam’s Club and was able to grill something for a group of teens in a flash and then we would have a firepit.  But now that is peppered with an empty house and we look at each other , decide it’s date night , and off we go to enjoy this quite and spontanious time. After 26 years of marriage that started with us having kids within the first year, spontanious alone time was nothing we have ever had. I am enjoying it.

One thing I have missed was weekend waffles. I use to have this clunky old waffle maker. It did it’s job but, always without fail, no matter what we did, we had to toss the first waffles out. It drove me nuts. But once that was over, and I had the rhythm down we would be enjoying some of the best waffles ever. 

While I wont lie and say I don’t have a store bought pancake mix in the house. I do. I really prefer my own homemade pancake & waffle mix. There is many a reason as to why I stopped making my own mix. They are mostly excuses as you will see this is way to easy to make. Then the waffle iron finally kicked the applicance bucket. I washed up the canister that held my homemade mix and that was it for what feels like forever and a day since I made up that mix and made homemade waffles.

It so happened my son was home as I was using some locally picked strawberries to make jam. We sat laughing and talking and he shared how when he was smaller and I user to make jam (another thing I have not done in years)  he always hoped a few jars wouldn’t set. The reason being we would use the more liquid jam as strawberry sauce for ice cream and waffles.  Who knew that what I thought was huge mistake made my kids so happy.  We kept at making the jam and I said I hoped a few jars didn’t set too. Maybe I would make pancakes this coming weekend and we could use the “mistakes” on them. 

My birthday was a few days later and this same son, who is ever thoughtful and thinks with his tummy a lot. A quality I adore about him. Gave me a very nice waffle maker for my birthday. I have to say I am over the top happy with this gift as it is much nicer than my old one, stores easy and who knew these things came with  setting to brown the waffles or make them more crunchy.  Plus, I get to be in the kitchen cooking up things that not only make my family happy but make me happy seeing their smiles. Win, Win!!

So of course I got out my old family cookbook and made up some of my homemade pancake and waffle mix. 

Pancake & Waffle Mix

  • 10 cups of all purpose flour (I love to use half wheat and half white)
  • 7 tablespoons baking powder
  • 2 1/2 tsps salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 3 tablespoons of sugar

In a large airtight container measure out all ingredients and then mix. I use to mix it with a whisk, put the lid on and then pass to one of my kids to shake up. 

To use the mix you will need the following:

  • 1 1/4 cups of mix
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons of butter

Heat up your griddle or waffle maker first. Then mix all your ingredients together. Cook on a hot lightly oiled or buttered griddle or waffle maker. Makes about 8 to 10 pancakes or batches of waffles depending on size of your waffle maker.  I keep the waffles in the oven on the warm setting while I finish cooking the waffles if folks are not up up yet. 

I’d love to tell you that I had a couple of failed jars of jam. Sadly I didn’t. They all set perfectly. So I whipped up a quick sauce for the pancakes.  We had a house full of sleepover guests when I made these and so my husband and I decided to be spontanous and take our breakfast out on the deck to enjoy. It was good we did as when my youngest son got up he was covered in a very bad poison ivy rash and had a bug bite taht he was having an allergy reaction to it. So ended up our quiet momen and off to the doctors we went. You gotta love life and take the time together when you can.

Savor the moments!

Wanting to learn how simple it is to be healthy? Need some help with health and lifestyle choices? Be sure to click the link on the right hand side of thie page to learn more about what I do as a health coach.  For the month of June in celebration of my birthday I am waiving my fee for a Discovery Session. That’s a 45 min session with me for free. Just mention the code “birthday” when you fill out the form or email me. 

Banh Mi , a perfect Sunday finish

Wihile I am Health Coach by night my day job has changed and I am now able to be a mild mannered banker by day. The best part is more time with my  husband and any of my kids who are home. Understand I am the mom of 4 adults and one 15 yr old going on major independence. 

What I have missed working in retail the past several years is having Sundays at home. Being able to cook a meal that just makes you feel all happy and coszy and is like the cherry on top of the weekend was something my soul actually missed.  While not every weekend ends with such a meal but I do try now that I have Sundays off. 

I was looking around one week to try a new recipe. Pork happened to be on sale and I wanted something different. I was watching the Cooking Channel and they were talking about Banh Mi. I’ve never had this Vietnamese sandwich and decided it was time to try it.  I went in search for a recipe and found one on a blog site called ” A better happier St. Sebastian”.  Which I have to say had the most beautiful mouthwatering photos I have seen. 

The recipe was easy enough and sounded perfect. The only challenge I found was that I don’t have a Vietnamese bakery near me and was really looking for the Banh Mi rolls which I hear really makes this dish. I did my best to look aorund but ended up using a crispy hogie roll baked my local grocery store.  I hope to find the crispy rice flour rolls someplace. I am sure there has to be a place in New Haven that has them.  I also was not able to get a 6lb pork shoulder roast. Usually my local store has them but for some odd reason this time they didn’t so I used a pork loin roast. 

The surprise part was the Asian slaw that was suggested to serve next to it. This maybe my new go to cole slaw. It was easy and simple and the family loved it.  I changed it from the recipe I found by buying a bag of broccoli slaw. I know crazy.

This Sunday dinner was a hit and we had leftovers for myself and the family to take to work the next day. The even better part, having dinner cooking away in the crockpot while I enjoyed the day with my family.

Thai Style Pulled Pork

  • 4 lb pork loin roast
  • 1 red pepper , chopped and seeds removed
  • 1 onion finally chipped
  • 1 can of lite coconut milk
  • 3-4 tbsp of red thai curry paste
  • 1 lime
  • 1 1/2 tsp ginger powder
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tblsp fish sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • fresh cilantro for serving

Trim any fat from your roast and salt and pepper it.  In a large skillet warm some oil and brown all the sides of the roast. Transfer the roast to the crockpot. Top with  ginger and garlic powder, pepper and onion, put lid on crockpot, set to low and cook for 8 hrs or untill your roast is so tender it just falls apart. 

When your roast is finsihed remove from crockpot and transfer the juices to a skillet and whisk in coconut milk, curry paste fish sauce and juice from lime. Cook sauce on simmer for 10 mins while you shred the pork.  When done add the the sauce to shred pork. Serve on rolls with cilantro.

Asian Slaw

  • 1 pkg of of broccoli slaw
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbs rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp ume plum vingear 
  • 1 tbs sesame oil.

Toss everything together in a large bowl. Serve on Bahn Mi or as a side to any other asian inspired dish or as replacement for your high calorie cole slaw. 

That’s all for this time. Next week I bring you another video with a healthy tip for eating well this spring!