Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Another winner sneaks up on me
--Pork Chops with Mustard
Pork Chops with Mustard
Liberace Cooks Copyright 1970
6 large pork chops
2 tablespoons wet mustard I used Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons pepper
1 cup water
Cut fat from chops and spread with mustard on both sides. Sprinkle with flour, salt and pepper. Brown in butter on both sides. When brown, add about 1 cup of water, cover, and simmer for an hour. Add more water as needed.
This recipe looked simple and needed no extra ingredients, which are two great qualities I look for in a recipe these days.
It didn't go exactly as I thought it would but that was mainly due to user error. I didn't brown my chops as well as I would have liked. They were sort of wet when I started but I figured I was adding wet mustard so I didn't dry them off. I might have been too heavy-handed with the flour so it didn't really end up adhering to the meat. I definitely wasn't patient enough.
I added the water, put on the lid and let them cook. The recipe says you may need to add water but didn't they have air-tight lids in 1970? How would you lose all that water in a covered pan? When I opened the lid, they were swimming in liquid (modern pork gives off it's own liquid too). They didn't look too appetizing, to be honest. The mustard was gone and they weren't very brown.
I was cooking them for the next night so I put them in the refrigerator in the liquid (so they wouldn't dry out). When I took them out the following evening, I removed the fat from the top and then I was surprised to see that the liquid had jellified like a good soup stock (surprised because I though it took bones to do that and these chops were boneless). I decided to add a bit of flour and water to make gravy out of it when I reheated the pork chops on the stove top.
I ended up with perfectly tender pork chops (not stringy at all!) with some excellent pork gravy on top. I couldn't believe that I ended up with such a nice gravy when I only used water to cook the chops and there was nothing besides the boneless meat, mustard, salt and pepper to flavor it.
This is one of those times when I have to wonder if it was all just a big fluke? Could I repeat this success? Someday I'll try.
Funny thing - as I was reading this cookbook, the baby was absolutely enthralled with the cover.
I don't know if it was the black, white and red colors but he was giving it such an intent look with furrowed brow. It was comical, especially considering how understated Liberace looks in that picture.
Question of the Day: Have you ever made a recipe that you loved but you could never get it to turn out quite the same way again?