Monday, May 21, 2012

Shmokey Moist Pork Chops

Pork Chops are easy to mess up, and gross when dry. That's why I hardley ever cook or eat them. So when I found myself craving them the other day, I wanted to make sure to do it right. And did I ever!
I got thick bone-in chops for prime moisture retention, and let these babies marinate for 24 hours to let the flavors infuse the meat.
It worked like a charm. A deliciouse, juicy charm.

Hickory-Mustard Herbed Pork Chops
- 1/4 c hickory syrup (or maple)
- 1/4 c grain mustard
- 1/4 c apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp ground thyme
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- bone-in pork chops
- smoked paprika, salt, pepper

Season meat with paprika, salt and pepper, and let sit for a couple of hours. Mix the marinade ingredients, and then use a fork to poke holes in the meat before pouring overtop. Transfer meat and marinade to a ziplock bag and let sit in fridge for 24 hours.
Take the meat out to let warm to room temperature before cooking. Preheat grill for 10 minutes, and then sear each side on high heat, before reducing heat to medium and cooking for about 10 minutes on each side until cooked in the center.
I served this with Garlic Spinach and roasted potato wedges seasoned with Old Bay.

Berry Crisp

No creative intro for this. Just found myself craving dessert today, and made meself a crisp, berry style.
It's really simple, not too sweet, but hits the spot...especially with ice cream.
The secret here is to add granola to the topping to make it nice and crispy, but you can subsitute any fruit for the filling.

Berry Crisp
(serves 4)
- 2 c Berries
- 1/4 c Cassis or Frambois liquor
- lemon wedge
- 1/2 c rolled oats
- 1/4 c whole wheat flour
- 1/2 c granola
- 1/3 brown sugar
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- dash cinnamon

In a food processor, pulse flour, oats, butter, sugar, maple syrup and cinnamon until crumbly and combined. Transfer to a bowl, and then mix in the granola, using your hands to make crumbly clumps. Let the mixture chill in the fridge for a few minutes. Meanwhile, stir the berries with the liquor and a squeeze of lemon, then transfer to a greased baking dish, top with the topping mixture and then transfer to the fridge again to chill for a few minutes before baking. Bake for 20 minutes or so, until topping is golden brown, and serve warm or at room temperature, so long as it comes with ice cream.

Turk(ish) Fish

So this is kind of Turkish inspired, emphasis on the ish. It's tilapia rubbed with a Turkish grilling spice blend brought to me by my parents upon their return from a trip to the farway land of Istanbul. I broiled it with lemon to try and simulate the kebab/rotisserie style there. The ish part comes from the saute of red bell pepper, Yucatan-inspired pickled onions and flat-leaf Italian parsley that I served it over. So, Turk(ish), Mayan(ish) or Italian(ish), this stuff was no doubt del(ish) and international in flavour.

Turkish Fish
- 1 filet tilapia
- Turkish grill seasoning/seasoning of choice
- 1/4 lemon. siced thin
- 1/2 bell pepper, diced
- pickled onions, diced
- italian parsley
- white wine

Preheat oven to 350. Rub fish with grilling spice blend of choice, transfer to a baking dish, top with sliced lemon and transfer to oven. Meanwhile, saute peppers, throw in the onions, and then add in the white wine, season with onion powder and diced parsley, stirring constantly until liquid is dissolved. Lastly, give the fish a minute under ther broiler to crisp it up before serving. Serve over peppers and onions.