Monday, March 11, 2013

Sunday Cooking

When I was a kid my mother made dinner every night.  How she managed this while working full-time and taking care of three kids with virtually no help from my father I will never understand, but she did, and sometimes it makes me wonder why I don't manage to get a home-cooked meal on the table more often.  But, I'm working on it. 

Sundays at my house meant fried chicken.  I'm not too into frying, too much splattering of grease, but I figured since I had the time yesterday I would make something from scratch.  Pork chops had been on sale so I hunted down a Paula Deen recipe for farmer's pork chops and figured I'd give that a try.  Overall I thought it turned out really well.  The husband enjoyed it, as did the kids, or at least they were willing to try it which is something.

I started by peeling and slicing five potatoes.  The recipes calls for I think eight, but I wanted to scale the recipe back since I only had four pork chops to make, not eight.

Once they were all sliced, I put them in bowl and covered them with cold water.

Next I chopped up an onion and then, while the potatoes soaked, I whipped up a bechamel sauce.  Bechamel is just a fancy way of saying I made a white sauce.  It all becomes less fancy when you find out that it's made out of flour, butter and milk.  So, don't be intimidated by the fancy, French name.

Butter, milk and flour assembled:

Melt the butter over a medium heat.

Once melted, take the pan off the heat and add the flour to make a paste.  Season with a little salt and pepper.

Return pan to heat and stir, stir, stir until the mixture starts to bubble.

Next you're going to add the milk, about a cup at a time.  Continue to stir until the mixture comes to a boil

Once it boils, reduce the heat and let everything simmer for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.  In the end you will have a thick sauce:

Now, the sauce needs to sit for about two minutes so I used that time to rinse my potatoes and layer them in a casserole dish, putting the sliced onion on top, sprinkling with salt and pepper and then another layer of potatoes, onions, salt and pepper.

Time to add the sauce!  Just pour it right over the potatoes.

Since the potatoes will take longer to get nice and soft than the pork chops will take to cook, I put them into a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Looks like I need to clean the oven.

And finally it's time for the pork chops.  I sprinkled some seasoned salt on them and then dredged them in flour.

Into the pan they went to just lightly brown in a little bit of oil.  I didn't cook them through, just browned them.

Once browned, I simply placed them on top of the potatoes and threw the casserole back into the oven and let it bake away for 50 minutes.  When it came out it looked like this:

Ahhhh, bubbly, porky, potatoey goodness.  Yum.

1 comment:

KJE said...

Love this. I am awaiting the Pudding blog entry.