Friday, April 16, 2010

Friday Night Cooking

The weekend is here! To celebrate I got brave and tried several new recipes that I can't wait to share.
I am not very brave when it comes to cooking meat. I can do chicken. No problem. Ground beef- no problem. Since getting married and hosting a few holiday meals I've even gotten up the gumption to cook a turkey, although admittedly with more than a few panicked phone calls to my mom. But when it comes to moving beyond those basics, it definitely puts me out of my comfort zone. So tonight I chose to challenge myself a little and make pork chops. Why pork chops? They were on sale of course!
After checking the sales fliers and deciding on pork loin chops, I found this recipe for Saucy Pork Chops with Orange Slices from Southern Living. Since I was already stretching myself I decided to make my own BBQ Sauce for the first time too- now I don't know if we'll ever be able to go back to store bought! I've included both recipes below. And by the way, you've got to love the name of the BBQ sauce:

Big Daddy's Carolina Grilling Sauce

Time: 40 minutes

1 cup prepared yellow mustard
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon liquid smoke (hickory flavoring)

1. Mix all except soy, butter and smoke. Simmer 30 minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients and simmer for 10 more minutes.

While the BBQ Sauce was simmering I put together the Pork Chops together and let them marinate.

Saucy Pork Chops with Orange Slices

4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork rib chops or loin chops*
½ cup orange juice
2 teaspoons soy sauce
¼ teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon black pepper
¼ cup sweet orange marmalade
½ cup bottled barbecue sauce
4 (1/4-inch-thick) orange slices

1. Pierce pork chops with a fork several times on each side. Combine pork chops and next 3 ingredients in a large shallow dish or large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Cover or seal, and chill for 30 minutes.

2. Remove chops from marinade, discarding marinade. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and black pepper.

3. Stir together marmalade and barbecue sauce in a small bowl. Brush one side of pork chops evenly with half of marmalade mixture.

4. Grill chops, marmalade mixture side up and covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 10 minutes. Turn pork chops, and brush evenly with remaining half of marmalade mixture. Grill 10 minutes or until done. Remove chops from grill, and let stand 5 minutes.

5. Grill orange slices, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat 1 minute on each side. Serve with pork chops.

*4 (1 1/4-inch-thick) boneless pork loin chops may be substituted. Reduce grilling time to 8 minutes on each side or until done.

I forgot all about grilling the oranges until we sat down to eat- but they would definitely be a great flavor combination with the Pork Chops.

The other recipe that I tried out and will definitely become a standard is this recipe for Roasted Spiced Potatoes from 64 Sq ft Kitchen. I love, love, love the flavors of garlic, lemon, and cilantro in this recipe!

Roasted Spiced Potatoes

Serves 4

Six big Yukon Gold (or any of your favorite yellow flesh potatoes)
3 tbsp olive oil
Salt (to taste)

Fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp of your favorite hot sauce (Optional)
2 tbsp chopped parsley
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced

1. Preheat the oven at 400F. Peel and slice the potatoes into wedges or fries. Put them in a bowl, along with the olive oil, salt, black pepper, ground cumin, paprika and harissa, if used. Toss the potatoes to combine.

2. Arrange them in a baking sheet in a single layer and bake until golden brown and crisp on the outside, turning them over once, about 25-30 minutes.

3. Mix the herbs, garlic, lemon juice in a bowl. When the potatoes are baked, toss them quickly with the garlic infused herbs and serve.


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