Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Pork Chops

I gotta admit, i used to hate pork chops. They were my dad's favorite meal when i was a kid, but i just couldn't get into the way my mom cooked them. With raisins. I just wasn't into it. (sorry mom)

So, when i stopped into a local meat market, i was surprised to find myself leaving with a package of pork chops. I only recently started including a decent amount of meat in our diet, and am still not super familiar with how to purchase meat or how to cook it. Rack of lamb? Ribs? Roast? Eh?  Pork chops were familiar, so i grabbed them. I'm glad i did.

I still didn't really know what to do with the chops, though. I sure as heck didn't want to use raisins, but you need to eat something with pectin in it when eating pork to help our human bods digest the stuff. Remember that applesauce i put up earlier this Summer? I finally cracked a jar open, and it wasn't as bad as i worried it would be (i burned it when i cooked it down). I added some chopped jalapeno to the sauce and warmed it up for a perfect slightly spicy/slightly sweet side to our meal. And then i left it in the microwave until we were 90% done with dinner. Sigh.

I think i did pretty well: from confused in the meat market to cooking a well balanced meal of pork chops, mushroom gravy, little baked potatoes and a side of broccoli (and applesauce). I winged the chops, and they turned out great. First i sauteed the chops with some onions and nitrate free bacon, then i added some mushrooms and herbs and topped it all with some homemade chicken stock. No worries about dried out chops OR undercooked pork. I can't wait until we're growing our own hogs and i can spend even more time humming, hawing and experimenting with the meat we package up.

Have you ever found yourself feeling like a fish out of water at the grocery store or market? Did you try something new, or stick with the one thing you recognized?

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