Baked Pork Chops with mushroom gravy
There are several things I struggle to cook well. Steak is one of them. Pork chops are another. I manage to dry them out to the consistency of boot leather, and so I rarely cook them. I was determined to find a method that works for me, and remembered an old Delia Smith recipe where you bake them with chopped mushrooms and cream. Lots of cream.
I had the mushrooms, but no cream. Could I adapt it? Why not.
I lightly browned the chops in a frying pan, then transferred them to a roasting tin, one small enough that they fit snugly together. Then I quickly fried the chopped mushrooms in the pork juices, and added a tablespoon of flour, and around 500ml of stock. The texture was lumpy and ugly, but I spooned it over the chops, covered tightly with foil, and placed at the bottom of a medium oven (170 degrees).
While they cooked gently, I turned my attention to the bag of almost-overripe apples in the larder, and turned them into a pie. Not just any pie, but the “Ultimate Apple Pie” from the BBC Goodfood website: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/ultimate-apple-pie
This had an enriched shortcrust pastry that came out delicious. I added a couple of very ripe, chopped plums to the sliced apples, to make it an apple and plum pie. I like that combo.
Damned oven. Again. The pastry was done, but the apples were firmer than I preferred. Served with a helping of good vanilla ice cream, though, and it was delicious 😊
Back to the pork chops and these were a winner! Served with creamy mashed potatoes and some frozen, mixed veg, they were meltingly tender, with a flavour-filled gravy. #Winning.
New Zealand is still under Lockdown restrictions. This blog intends to avoid the bad news about rising numbers of victims. It focuses instead on food, and the challenges of cooking fresh meals every day – with the ingredients from my larder. A much nicer message 😊