Amanda loves pork.
Amanda really loves potatoes.
Amanda isn’t really a fan of vegetables.
So I have to walk a fine line all the time with her, but it’s worth it for me because it’s a chance to learn for me.
The stars were aligned for this meal this weekend. Not only had it been a few weeks in between pork dishes but pork chops were only sale at the market I like to frequent. To top that I received a supply of four new cookbooks in the mail this week, one of them being Giada De Laurentiis – Giada’s Family Dinners (which I had been hoping would be under the tree for Christmas).
While I was reading the book I came across page 96, and Parmesan-Crusted Pork Chops.
Had I mentioned that Amanda loves cheese?
Well Amanda loves cheese.
So I saw it as fortuitous and decided to plan a meal around the sale product and the flavor in Giada’s recipe. My first thought was rosemary and garlic roasted potatoes spears. I was banking on this thought while I was at the grocery store, but I came across some lovely yellow and orange peppers that I decided if I pan fried with a bit of olive oil and finished with a tablespoon of white wine vinegar in the pan for the last minute of cooking would provide a tang as well as a great color to the plate. Picking up the peppers I knew that would have to change my idea for potatoes because as my mother had always taught me I shouldn’t have multiple items of the same size and shape on a plate. Creamy mashed potatoes dressed with nothing more than real butter, milk, salt, and pepper is a delicious canvas for the pork and the peppers to rest on and texturally it shakes up and lands along nothing else I’ve set aside for her dish.
I like to try and get two vegetables on any plate I make. This way I can give two different flavors and my hope is to never bore people with my side dishes. So to go with the parmesan pork I thought onions caramelized in butter tossed with green peas would make a wonderful addition.
With almost all dishes that I make I’m asked for some sauce, but I also know that Amanda is conscious of her weight. So I decided to go for something high in flavor and low in gravy laden fat.
Mushroom No-Gravy Ingredients
1 – 8 ounce package Cremini Mushrooms
1 – 8 ounce package Shitake Mushrooms
2 tsps butter
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and Pepper to Taste
Clean off and dice all of the mushrooms
Heat a medium skillet over med-low heat. Add the butter and olive oil. Once the pan is heated add cleaned and diced mushrooms. Do not add salt and pepper yet as it will stop the mushrooms from obtaining the rich brown color of pan gravy we are looking for. Sautee the mushrooms for several minutes (everyone’s cook tops are different mine took about six minutes) till they have reached the deep brown then salt and pepper to taste. Cook another minute.
Serve warm over whatever you wish.
Add it all together and you get Saturday and Sunday’s suppers for my friend Amanda.