Pork Chops and Applesauce
Last night I wanted to make some kind of pork chops and applesauce combination. A lot of recipes for pork chops seem to have some kind of brown sugar or mustard sauce on top, but I knew that I wanted something with more zip and crunch to offset the sweetness and smoothness of the applesauce. These recipes turned out to be perfect. The mustard crust has some crunch on top (you can put it under the broiler for a couple of minutes if you want more) but there's enough of it on the meat to have some real body to it. Joe, in his constant pursuit of rice with every meal (apparently it's a southern thing) made a bid for that to be another side, but I was in no mood. I compromised by making these mustard greens from some that we'd frozen after our last visit to South Carolina (in my mind, it counts as a compromise because it's also from the south).
I modified a recipe for the pork chops with mustard crust from Epicurious as follows:
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 tablespoon dried parsley
3 tablespoons three peppercorn mustard (we love this kind, but dijon mustard would work here too)
1 cup plain breadcrumbs
2 bone in pork chops (each about 3/4 inch thick)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Oil 13x9x2-inch pan. Mix melted butter, parsley and the mustard in bowl. Mix in breadcrumbs. Sprinkle pork chops with salt and pepper. Arrange in prepared pan. Press 1/2 of breadcrumb mixture atop each pork chop. Bake pork chops until cooked through, about 35 minutes. The internal temperature of the chops should reach 145° - 150°F.
The applesauce recipe I like is very basic. Take medium sized apples (peel them, slice them into chunks) and put them in a saucepan with a tablespoon of water for each apple. Simmer them for 15 minutes or so, until you can mash them with a slotted spoon. Add the sugar that you like (I used Gala apples and it really didn't need much) and sprinkle in some cinnamon. It's so easy and so delicious.
I love it when things come out of the kitchen like this -- easy to prepare, made with ingredients we had on hand anyway, and tasting really really good. Give these a try -- I think you'll love them.