one man's ceiling
Monday, October 30, 2006
  apple chutney-esque
i hated pork chops growing up. i loved pork chops growing up.

i hated that they always seemed too thin, too tough and chewy. actually, most meats in our house growing up were prepared under the broiler until tough and chewy. it wasn't until i was an adult that i actually learned that not all red meat is blackened on the outside and grey-brown on the inside.

but i loved the flavor on pork chops, the gamey-brininess of the meat. i also loved gnawing on the bones, picking them clean, though this turned out to be more a function of starvation as i have since grown tired of having to do that much work.

boneless center cut chops, neatly trimmed, that's my preference now. and instead of broiling them to within a fraction of charred combustion i like to massage them with olive oil, season with a little salt and pepper, pan sear them on each side and then let them slowly cook out in the oven until plump and just losing their pink.

and i like them served with something on top. carmelized onions, mushroom gravy or, best, some kind of fruit.

a few nights ago i was hankering for an apple chutney atop the chops, but i wasn't really interested in doing a complete job of it. yes, the laziness factor. after thumbing through a couple recipes i finally decided on the following ingredients and method for an apple-onion quasi-compote.

apple chutney (sorta)
in a bowl blend the sugars and spices.
heat to medium-high a large frying pan with the butter until it starts to bubble.
toss in the apples and cook to soften a bit, about 2 or 3 minutes.
add the onions and garlic and cook another couple of minutes.
sprinkle in the sugar-spice mix and stir to coat.
when things start getting a little sticky add the apple cider, scraping up any fond that may have built up on the bottom of the pan.
when the liquid begins to bubble turn heat down to medium-low and add the vinegar.
simmer until liquid is reduced to a nice syrup and apples are soft but not too mushy. if the liquid thickens before the apples are cooked add a little water or apple cider.

keep on low until serving, then spoon generously over chops.

if everything is prepped you can do this in the time it takes to oven roast some pork chops and make a side dish of some kind. we like spinach.

kids did not like the chutney. sillies.
survived reheating in the microwave a couple days later.
probably could have survived my initial instinct to add curry powder to the mix.
I would agree that curry would be "too much". My granny makes legendary pork chops - one of her steps (which I gleaned from spying) is to pound the meat, not too hard, but evenly. Just a tip. I may try your chutney-ness, sounds deeelightful

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recipes and musings on food -- and anything else for that matter -- from a guy with a sticky brain who likes food. perhaps he likes food too much.

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