Wednesday, September 4, 2013

BBQ Beer Pork Chops

Pork chops are inexpensive and generally come in pretty big packages.  Therefore, when I buy them, I usually prepare half and freeze half for later.  This is a great recipe for those days when you are really needing to hit up the grocery store but you're too lazy, and instead, you're trying to 
scrounge up something with whatever scraps you have left.   Pork chops. Potatoes. Ketchup. Brown sugar. Beer.  Ingredients that I'm sure you've already got on hand.

BBQ Beer Pork Chops

5-8 pork chops (boneless)
salt & pepper
2-3 T. olive oil (or butter)

Season pork chops and brown in oil over medium heat.  Remove from pan & set aside.

4-5 T. flour
1 bottle beer (anything but LIGHT beer)
1/2 c. brown sugar (light or dark)
1/3 c. ketchup
salt & pepper, to taste (maybe a pinch of crushed red pepper?)

Whisk flour into drippings leftover in pan.  Allow roux to cook for a minute, whisking constantly, to get rid of flour-y taste.  Deglaze pan by whisking in about half of the beer. Slowly whisk in remaining beer, ketchup, and brown sugar.  Stir until smooth and well combined.  Allow to simmer and thicken.  Add pork chops and their juices to sauce.  Turn to coat. Cover and continue simmering for about 10-15 minutes.  

Brown generously s&p-ed pork chops in EVOO.
Remove chops and make a roux with a few tablespoons of flour.
Deglaze pan with 1/2 bottle of beer, then whisk in remaining beer, ketchup, and brown sugar.

Allow sauce to simmer and reduce.  Add back in chops and their juices.  Turn to coat.  Allow them to simmer for another few minutes.  Definitely serve over mashed potatoes.

Chicken Trombino

Chicken is simmered in a roasted red pepper tomato sauce and topped with perfectly melty provolone cheese. This delicious chicken just goes to show, that sometimes the simplest of ingredients can combine to  make the most delicious meals.  

Before cooking this dish, you need to roast a red bell pepper. Yes, you can buy them in a jar--but i like to use excess garden bells, so I roast my own. You can do this in a number of ways--just Google it!  I usually roast mine under the broiler or over a gas flame.  I simply cut the pepper flesh off of the core, place it on a cookie sheet, and broil it in my oven. ((don't use your Silpat like I did--high broiling temps reduce the durability of your Silpat)) Usually I will do like 3-5 minutes on low--to soften it a little--then I crank it up to high and let the skin get all black and burned.  After that, I let them cool until I can easily handle them, then peel off the burnt skin.  And that's all it takes! Alternatively, you can also roast them over the open flame of a gas stove.  Turn the burner on high, stab a fork in your pepper, and crisp the skin directly in the flame.

Chicken Trombino

1.5-2 lbs. chicken breast
1/3 c. flour
2-3 T. olive oil/butter

Either cut breasts into thin cutlets or pound until uniform in thickness.  Season with salt and pepper.  Dredge in flour. Fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. (the dredging is optional--this also turns out well without dredging in flour)

2 T. butter
1 t. minced garlic
1 roasted red pepper, diced (~1/2 c.)
5-6 plum or campari tomatoes, diced (or whatever garden excess tomatoes you might have)
1 t. dried oregano
1/4-1/2 c. red cooking wine
1 t. tomato paste
dash of Worcestershire sauce
4-5 slices or 1 c. grated provolone cheese
3-5 T. ribboned or chopped basil

Melt butter over medium heat.  Saute garlic until slightly golden.  Add red peppers and tomatoes. Stir until combined.  Once hot and starting to bubble, add in 1/4 c. of wine.  Allow sauce to simmer and wine to cook down.  Stir in tomato paste and oregano. Add another splash or two of wine.  Place chicken in sauce.  Cover each piece of chicken with provolone cheese.  Reduce heat to low and cover skillet.  Allow to simmer for about 15-20 minutes.  ((If you would like, you can even gently broil the cheese on top to golden brown goodness)) Top with fresh basil....the fresh basil is a MUST! 

*Try serving over egg noodles or a bed of quinoa, or with a fresh salad and roasted asparagus!

Credit: Lidia's Italy

Garlicky Lime Pan Chicken