April 6, 2010

Chop Perfection

Garlic….you can smell these flowers coming. 2010.

Himself: Swam, job hunted, groceries at Ralph’s rather than the local…..

Herself: ditto….and every time I sat down, I dozed off. Today swam and snapped my titanium frames right in the middle of the bridge. I'm very hard on frames. Grrrrrr. Teeth, I'm off to the insurance covered dentist at 3:30 this afternoon tho my old dentist called.

Earthquake: Yes, we sure did feel the earthquake. We were up on the third floor. G was napping and I was reading when the whole world began to shake...then continued shaking until we could see the walls actually moving in two directions. I thought the house was going to flap itself to bits. Yes, this 7.2 was the strongest earthquake either of us have ever been in...and the aftershocks continue.

Reading: “The Only Way To Cross.”

Gratitude: Finally made that old pork chop recipe come out right….I used a meat thermometer. Camera done, glasses fixed.
I adore pork chops. Over the last thirty years, pork has been bred to be leaner, and I feel less guilt eating it. Yes, I can hear Bee’s scorn and revulsion when I mention meats or desert….”Eeeewwwwww!” But I eat my pork on occasion.

The oldest version of this pork chop recipe, from the “Milwaukee Settlement House Cook Book”, says to put one and a half thick chops in a baking pan, top with half a cored apple, and sprinkle the apple with sugar. Bake in a “hot” oven, it tells me, for 40 to 50 minutes basting often.

Now you know I am lazy. Am I going to baste those chops every few minutes for most of an hour to brown them? We think not. Will I buy one and a half inch thick chops? No.

So I would buy these thin, skimpy chops and brown them lightly in a pan on top of the stove. Following the rest of the directions exactly tho baking at 350, except for the basting, will result in dry, hard to eat pork chops. Trust me. I’m an expert on this. I keep doing this my way thinking I will get their results.

Finally after years of doing this my way, I bought one and a half inch thick chops. Yup, rather than baste the chops, I did brown them lightly on top of the stove then popped them in the oven. After inserting a honking big meat thermometer….there’s nothing small or digital about my meat thermometer, and, at the end of fifty minutes, I checked the meat thermometer. Done.

Juicy, with its own baked apple, it was almost too much for me to eat. Tho perfection for all those of us who love pork chops, I still want to make this recipe work with a far, far smaller chop.

Just give me another thirty years to experiment.


  1. You are correct in that we can eat anything we like as long as we control the portion size and balance with something more healthy.

  2. I have never seen a garlic plant before.The one you photographed is beautiful.I also loved all the other flower pictures.

    I will try the pork chop recipe because I love them,too. My MIL always used an apple whenever she cooked any pork dish like pork and saurkraut.The apple gave the meat a nice sweet taste.

  3. Oops. Forgot to mention I am back...got back on Saturday and have tons of mail, laundry, weeding...all that stuff to fill my week.

  4. I like pork chops too!!

    And I used to plant garlic and chives in my flower beds. They look pretty!

  5. me too, a first to see garlic flowers--thx! Just had pork tonight! the trick: a little squeeze of lime over it just at the end, before it's done...!

  6. The boys used to like it when I covered the chops with a mixture of chopped onion, bread crumbs and chopped sage before roasting in the oven - to be eaten with apple sauce of course.

  7. I confess I have a thing for pork as well, in spite of my pet pigs as a child (I hope they forgive me up there in Pig heaven), and I also had trouble cooking them without making them tough! Your recent results sound fabulous. Too bad I no longer cook meat at home, but I'm now ordering more meat items--even beef--when we have to eat out these days. Somehow my body that I'm listening to far better through this chemo thing seems to want more meat. Maybe it needed protein; certainly it needed food to stick to the ribs longer.

  8. By the way, have you ever been to Gilroy for the garlic festival? I've always wanted to go!


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