day 17: if looks could kill … but tastes could revive …

Ever had those moments you WISH you could have gotten on camera? Or rather, you wish you had a better photo to represent the moment that ROCKED your world? Welcome to today’s lesson in culinary genius …

On that note, tonight was all about flexibility and creativity … I realized that I was a bit behind on the start with tonight’s blog post. In a dash, I got flexible and creative. What’s in the fridge … Pork steaks, broccoli, black rice, cilantro, onions and apples … Sounds like a meal, eh? And indeed it was. BUT, let’s not forget, part of the appeal in reading a food blog is the inspiration to replicate the beautiful photo of food you see before you. One day, I’ll learn enough tips & tricks to make Teresa Blackburn of Food on Fifth proud (hopefully, she’s still keeping up with me *hint hint). In the meantime, let’s just take a leap of faith. Take my word for it … this one is worth perfecting through the lens.

Meal on the fly!

Meal on the fly!

What you’ll need:

  • Pork steaks
  • A healthy sprinkle of cinnamon
  • A healthy sprinkle of cumin
  • A healthy sprinkle of garlic powder
  • Broccoli florets
  • Juice and zest of 1 lime
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tsp of honey
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 granny smith apple, sliced
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • black rice, cooked to recipe with chicken stock and 2 cloves fresh garlic
  • a handful of cilantro, chopped
  • Salsa verde (I used a personal favorite’s house green hot sauce – ask nicely and I’ll connect you with that recipe one day)

What you’ll do:

For the Pork Steaks

  1. Allow steaks to come to room temperature and sprinkle with cinnamon, garlic powder and cumin.
  2. Grill steaks to your preference. I typically go for 135 internal temp and let them rest for a few minutes
  3. Make chutney (recipe below) amazing!
  4. Enjoy!

For the Roasted Broccoli

  1. Combine 2 tbsp of olive oil, lime, salt & pepper. Whisk well.
  2. Toss broccoli in dressing
  3. Spread into an even layer on a baking sheet
  4. Bake at 400 for about 10 minutes
  5. Enjoy!

For the Chutney:

  1. Sautee onions and apples in the remaining oil and butter
  2. Add in salsa verde of your choice (I used about 3 heaping tbsp)
  3. Toss in fresh cilantro (leave a few to dress your plate if you like)
  4. Enjoy!

*Plate it up with black rice. Get brave stir it all together. Bite, chew and continue the digestion process. You can thank me later!

seriously, the best buttermilk fried pork chops ever


Seriously, the best Buttermilk Fried Pork Chops Ever!

What you’ll need:

  • 6 boneless pork chops, about 1″ thick
  • 3 cups buttermilk
  • 3 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 adobo seasoning packets ( I use Goya)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan-reggiano
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. course ground black pepper
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 egg

What you’ll do:

  1. Combine cayenne, adobo and buttermilk.
  2. Arrange chops in a single layer and pierce with a fork all over. Then pour buttermilk mixture over and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (up to 24).
  3. In a skillet (I used a cast iron), heat your oil to medium. And preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Set up your breading station. You’ll need 3 bowls. In the first, place the salt, pepper and flour and combine. In the second, beat the egg and stir in the water. In the last bowl, combine the panko, parmesan-reggiano, and parsley.
  5. Remove a pork chop from the buttermilk marinade and remove excess.
  6. Move through breading station – coat with flour, coat with egg wash, and last coat with the panko mixture. Place carefully in the oil and allow to brown for 2-3 minutes on each side.
  7. Once both sides are browned, place on cookie sheet and repeat for each pork chop.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
  9. Remove and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
  10. Enjoy!

sorghum + coffee marinated pork chops

During a recent Farmer’s Market excursion, I found a local Molasses and Sorghum vendor. I never knew the difference. However, 2o minutes later … this is what I learned: Molasses is a by-product of the sugar industry, whereas sorghum is the syrup produced when the extracted juice from the sorghum is boiled down. I felt compelled to purchase said heavenly juice and have since been hunting a recipe to actually USE sorghum. Low and behold Sir Alton Brown’s “Molasses & Coffee Marinated Pork Loin” … Adaptively so – here ya go!

What you’ll need …

1 cup cooled strong brewed coffee
1/2 cup sorghum
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp stone ground mustard
3 minced garlic cloves
1/2 tsp ground ginger
8 springs fresh chopped thyme
8 boneless pork chops (approximately 1 inch thick)

Combine coffee, sorghum, vinegar, mustard, garlic, ground ginger, and thyme. Mix until thoroughly combined. Place chops into a baking dish (making sure they are flat to the dish – use a fork to pierce chops all over and through). Pour mixture over and allow to marinate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Remove chops and bring to room temperature for at least 30 minutes prior to cooking. Heat grill pan to high heat and sear each chop on each side for 3 minutes. Place in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes or until internal temperature is 145 degrees. Enjoy!

*** Recipe adapted from Alton Brown***