A friend recently asked how I come up with all the different things I end up cooking, which I thought was a great question! My personal email box is filled with blog posts from my favorite bloggers, daily recipe blasts from Saveur, Food and Wine, Bon Apetite, and Food Network TV, just to name a few. While most of these are deleted after a quick glance, there are those that stand out do to their uniqueness, or familiarity, or implied adventure into the unknown.
This Transylvanian recipe, published by Saveur in February of 2012, was so delicious and different! I made it with pork chops, but I could see making it with a whole pork loin, and being a very elegant presentation. Though the recipe recommended white rice, I served the dish with farro. The nutty farro went perfectly with the sauce! http://www.saveur.com/gallery/Transylvanian-Recipes?page=6
1/3 cup olive oil
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
4 pork loin chops – boneless, bone in – your choice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup flour
2 tart apples, such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored, and cut into 8 wedges each
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1/2 red Fresno chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 1/2 cups hard apple cider (Buy a 750ml bottle, and serve the rest with the meal!)
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. finely chopped marjoram
1 tbsp. finely chopped parsley
Heat 2 tbsp. each oil and butter in a 12″ skillet over medium-high heat. Season pork on both sides with salt and pepper, and dredge half the pieces in flour; add to skillet, and cook, turning once, until lightly browned on both sides, about 1 minute.
Transfer to a plate, and set aside; repeat with 2 tbsp. oil, remaining butter, and remaining pork and flour; transfer all pork to plate.
Return skillet to heat, and add remaining oil; add apples, garlic, onion, and chile, and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 3 minutes.
Add cider, and cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes.
Add stock, cream, and mustard, and bring to a boil; return pork to skillet, and add marjoram. Reduce heat to medium, and cook until pork is cooked through and sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle with parsley; serve with rice or *farro.
*If Farro is new to you, check out the great article here from NPR’s Kitchen Window!