Sunday, October 24, 2010

Oven-fried pork chops with stuffed delicata squash

The only time Scooper cares about food is when I assemble his kibble and canned stuff at about 6:30 am and 4 pm. So you see him below doing what he does best.

My original intent was to make pork chops the way I saw Giada do them on TV the other day. She fried them in very shallow oil. At the very last minute I decided to bake them.

As for the stuffed squash, I apologize to the one of you who posted stuffed acorn squash the other day with spinach. I’ve lost track as to who it was. When I found a single delicata squash at King Soopers the other day, I knew what I was going to do. The first thing was to harvest all of the (not so huge quantity) Swiss chard from the garden. It turned out to be exactly the quantity needed for this.

The chops were brined for about 6 hours in a combination of salt water and black pepper. No further salt was needed. As for the squash, the skin is edible and we choose to keep it on.

Oven-fried pork loin chops served with stuffed delicata squash
1 delicata squash
2 tbsp butter
onion powder to taste
chicken broth
Swiss chard, enough to make 1 – 2 cups cooked
1 large clove garlic, minced or pressed
salt and pepper
3 pork loin chops (it’s what the quantity in the package was)
1 egg
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp water
black pepper
all-purpose flour
bread crumbs, homemade or panko
cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Start by slicing the squash in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds and pulp. Place 1 tbsp butter, ½ tsp onion powder and some chicken stock into each cavity. Bake until tender, about 45 minutes or so. Remove from the oven and pour the remaining liquid into a saute pan (for the chard).

Chop or tear the chard into 2-3” pieces. Heat the squash liquid and cook the chard in it, with the garlic, Cook the chard in the pan for about 10 minutes, adding salt and pepper to taste. When ready to serve, nuke the squash to rewarm it, stuff it with chard, and you’re off to the races.

After brining, rinse the pork well and dry it. Sprinkle with some pepper, dust with flour, dredge in beaten egg (to which you have added the mayo and water), then in the bread crumbs. Let them rest for 30 minutes to set the coating. Place them on a wire rack over a shallow baking sheet. Spray them with Pam to enchance crispness. Bake until they reach 150 degrees. I know, I know, it doesn’t sound like a high enough temp, but it is. It will be pinkish in the center, but will also be more moist than at a higher temp. Trichinosis, an extremely rare occurrence these days, is destroyed at 138 degrees. So, no worrieds. Let the chops rest for 5 minutes before serving.


Unknown said...

Oven fried or shallow fried, I know these came out tasting fantastic!! I will admit that I have never actually had acorn squash before...silly, I know, but true!! I'll have to make sure I remedy that soon!

Create. Snap. Eat. said...

Swiss chard from the garden?! Lucky duck. And why isn't Scooper interested?! That's just insane.

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