Saturday, December 3, 2011

The Samantha Dean Cooking Show - Pork Chops

This is one of my favorite recipes because it's just so dang easy. I buy a couple pork chops, usually the cheapest cut of meat at my local grocery store anyway, and throw them in a stainless steel frying pan and put them on the burner over medium.

It is key that you leave them alone until they've formed a nice golden crust on the bottom. How do you tell when it's on the bottom?! Well, usually until it starts smelling really good. Or a more accurate sign: the pork chop will bubble up in the center like one of those poppers kids flip inside out, which then launched themselves into the ceiling. Except these chops will do no such launching. Before flipping, make sure to season the raw side of your chop with some salt and pepper, at least.

Once the crust has been formed, take a spatula and flip that baby. You might have to flatten the chop down because it will still be curled up at the edges. Take this time to season this side of the chop with a little salt and any fresh or dried herbs you have on hand. After about five or ten minutes, they should be done. Take them out of the pan and keep them covered. Then, with the pan still on the burner, de-glaze it by pouring some water or broth over it. If you use water, it will still de0glaze the pan, you will just need to add some bouillon. Anyway, the pan should make all sorts of scary noises as it de-glazes and then turn down the heat (but still allow the liquid to simmer).

As a side for this recipe, I like using egg noodles, fun-shaped noodles, or hash browns (they're reallllly good, I promise), but any kind of noodle, rice, or potato will do - pretty much anything you want to have your gravy served on top of.

Back to your gravy. Let it simmer for five or ten minutes and add water or broth as needed. Your broth should start to thicken up just a teensy bit and this is your cue to start mixing up some flour or corn starch with some milk or water. The point is to use very cold milk or water and to make sure there aren't any lumps of flour or corn starch left in the mixture. Then add it to the still-simmering gravy and stir like your life depended on it! If you leave it sitting in the gravy for any time whatsoever, you'll have lumps, or worse, you'll be frying up a pancake in the middle of your gravy.

Continue to let your gravy simmer until it thickens up into a nice, gravy-like mixture. Now, the final step is something some people swear by, but I skip it. You can throw a pat of butter or two into the mixture, let it melt and voila! You're done. Throw the gravy over the chops and your side and you're done.

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