Thursday, June 16, 2011

Day 16: Stuffed Pork chops

My cousin Pam Hepworth is at it again, cooking grandma's stuffed porkchops! Enjoy!

4 double-thick chops. Cut a pocket in the fat side.
1/4 c. chopped onion
1 c. chopped celery
1/4 c/. butter
6 slices bread, crumbled
1/3 c. chopped green pepper
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 tsp sage
1/4 tsp poultry seasoning
1/3 cup water

Saute veggies in butter, combine with crumbs and seasonings. Fill each pork chop with 1/4 c stuffing. Add 1/3 c. more water to rest of stuffing and bake in buttered, covered casserole dish. Bake chops, after browning in a skillet, in 350 degree oven for 1 hour. Fasten edges of chops with chopsticks.

CHEF OF THE DAY: Pam Skoy Hepworth

I love pork chops and I love stuffing-- so of course this is a favorite recipe of mine. I haven't made it in years, so I jumped at the chance to make this dish again. It was much easier than I remembered--most likely because I actually took the time to sharpen my knife before slicing into the chops (I'll spare you the horror story of my prior attempts to make the pork pockets with an embarrasingly dull dud of a knife no doubt inherited from my mom before it could be donated to the DI). However, the entire process did take me longer than I recalled. For me the time-takers came in the form of shredding quite a bit of bread (unless your bread is already dry and crumbly), making my own poultry seasoning because I couldn't find the nearly full container I have somewhere in the house, AND the hour of baking after everything is combined, stuffed and browned.

My advice would be to tackle this recipe when you have plenty of time to enjoy the process, or take the recipe in parts and make the stuffing the night before (minus the broth--you can add that just before stuffing the pork).

Green Bean and Mushroom Medley

This combination of vegetables is not only easy peasy to make, but really makes your ordinary, dull can of green beans stand up and act fancy. I didn't have waterchestnuts and didn't use bacon to garnish the top of the beans (since I was serving it with the pork chops), but the dish was yum, even without those items.

My food storage is over-laden with canned green beans, so I chose to use canned over fresh beans. Later this summer, when green beans are in season, I'll make this again with fresh beans, which will, of course, make it even better.

Stuffed pork chops, green bean mushroom medley and some extra stuffing. You could add gravy, but why???

Green beans and mushrooms cook up first; then add the green onions and waterchestnuts to the pan a few minutes before serving. So easy.

A side view (less scary view) of the finished stuffed pork chops.

Cutting the pocket into the chop was actually easier than I thought it would be. Of course I sharpened my knife first.......

Smart phones are so handy in the kitchen when you need to look up the recipe for poultry seasoning.

My bread was pretty fresh and squishy, so I toasted it in the oven until it was slightly browned, hoping to save the stuffing from becoming a dense mass of bread and veggies and maybe adding a toasty flavor dimension to it all. It worked!

Stuffed and browned chops, ready to go in the oven, looking very much like scary, wide-mouthed sea monster grins in mid-chew.

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