Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Pork and Me: The Reunion

reunited and it feels so right

recipe # 178

It was Valentines Day and I really wanted to be with the one I love (and my husband) so I decided to make pork. Sweet, delicious, wonderful pork.

My friend Lara who lives in the UK and I think might be in love with Jamie Oliver sent me this recipe. I think it is one of his, but I'm not sure. I'll get her to confirm or deny:

Tray-Baked Pork Chops w/ herby potatoes, parsnips, pears and minted bread sauce
Serves 4
8 pork chops or 4 double pork chops
1 rosemary garlic and lemon marinade (recipe below)
3 parsnips
3 pears (I used apples)
1.5 lbs potatoes, scrubbed
salt and pepper
minted bread sauce (recipe below)

Marinade pork chops for 1-6 hours. Preheat oven to 425. peel potatoes and parsnips and chop em up. Chop up pear, but core it first. Pour everything in a glass baking dish or other tray, mix everything up so marinade covers potatoes, parsnips and pears and bake everything for 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on the size of the chops.

While chops and vege are cooking make the minted bread sauce and smear it all over the pork.

Rosemary, Garlic and Lemon Marinade
2 good handfuls of fresh rosemary, pounded
6 cloves of garlic, crushed.
10 glugs of olive oil
3 lemons, halved, juiced and skin squashed
fresh ground black pepper

Bread Sauce
3 handfuls of fresh mint
1 handful of chopped bread
extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
2 tsp. mustard
red wine vinegar

Finely chop 3 parts mint to 1 part bread and stir in some olive oil until the mixture has loosened. Carefully season, adding the mustard and splashing in some vinegar to taste. The flavor improves over time.

I have a deep love of pork. I also think the pig is a wonderful, cute and smart animal that really shouldn't be eaten, so I have a serious moral dilemma. Last month I swore off pork all together until I could find a place on the left coast that was similar to Flying Pig Farm in upstate NY. Flying Pig is a lovely place. The pigs are beautiful, happy and well taken care of. I know this because I would go and drive by there on a regular basis simply because the pigs looked like they were having such a nice time.

Anyway, last weekend I found some nice loin chops at a farmers market, paid the high price and had them in lieu of lobster for Valentine's Day.

They were pretty tasty. I think I over cooked them when I put them in the broiler to brown them a bit. Besides the dry, the flavor was nice. They also took only about 14 seconds to prepare.

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