Saturday, May 14, 2011

Pan Fried Thin Cut Pork Chops

In case you haven't already noticed, I like pork.  It's flavorful, versatile, and it can be quick.  Lissa and I have been buying these thin cut chops from the butcher lately.  Some salt and pepper, a couple of minutes on each side in a hot skillet, and you're done (if you deglaze the pan with some wine it'll really look like you put in some time).  Truly, 10 minutes and these go from in the paper to on the plate.  They are so thin that they cook in minutes, and so as long as you don't overcook them, they'll stay nice and moist.  Now, you could brine these chops and they would be even more moist, but the beauty of these for me is the ease with which you can get a tasty meal on the plate.

Lissa is usually very patient with me, but my "ready in 20 minutes" sometimes turns into an hour.  Having go-to recipes and cuts like this are indispensable for those weeknights when you can't have 20 minutes turn into an hour.

If I really wanted to streamline the process, I would not have opted for the rice pilaf.  But we had to clean up after our trip to the gym anyway, so I just threw a cup of rice and a handful each of slivered almonds and dried currants in a pot...two cups of water, let boil, cover, simmer for 20 minutes.  By the time we're both showered and the chard is cleaned and sliced, and the chops are fried, the 20 minutes are up, and it's time to drink and dine.  Cupcake chardonnay is the libation of choice for tonight.

I did make a quick pan sauce (I wanted to look fancy) with shallots, white wine, lemon, butter, salt, pepper and a splash of vanilla.  Yes.  I said it.  Vanilla.  I read in a wine-pairing book a long time ago about adding a splash of vanilla to a dish you would serve with an oaked chardonnay in order to bridge the flavors.  A delicious bridge it is.  Add a little squeeze of lemon juice and a pinch of lemon zest?! Brilliant.

When you can have a delicious meal, quickly, for little money, it's a good thing.  I want more good things like this.

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