Sunday, April 26, 2009

Pork Chops , Grilled, real moist and juicy!.

You brine the pork chops in a brineing solution ........

If you enjoy dried out tasteless pork chops then go ahead and hit the return button, however if you like moist pork chops that are flavor full and moist, here is a recipe that is easy and works every time.

You have probably read my other recipes which use brineing. I always brine chicken, turkey and any meat that you have to cook a little longer and still require juiciness.

Now I know, you are going to tell me that you have to cook all pork to well done......if that is the case there is nothing that I will be able to tell you to convince you otherwise.

These chops you pull off the grill when the internal temperature is 120.
Yes, 120........but you are saying that 120 in beef is rare...........really rare.............

Will you give me a chance?

You pull it off the grill at 120 , tent it with aluminum foil and the internal residual heat will continue cooking it to about 135.

When you cut into it, there will not be any raw or real pink places unless YOU did something wrong. And if you are that sensitive, toss it on the grill for another 2 more!

To make the brine, heat some water to real warm, put in the salt and sugar, with liquid smoke, Stir to dissolve and put in the chops and let them swim around for at least 2 or 3 hours. If the chops are cold you don't have to put it in the fridge. If they are not or it is real hot in the room you can put them in the fridge, remember to remove them 30 mintes before grills so they get to room temp for more even cooking.

Heat your grill to normal cooking temperature on one side and low on the other side. After brineing, remove from the brine and quickly rinse off the brine, and pat dry with paper towels.
Season with fresh ground pepper and anything else you may like at this time. (garlic powder, bbq seasoning etc)

When the grill is ready put on the grill, then for those fantastic grill marks turn the chops 90 degrees after about 2 minutes, then after about 4 minutes turn to the other side, and repeat for the grill marks about 2 minutes later.

Then put into the lower part of the grill and tent with foil, for about 2 or 3 minutes.

Now grab your instant read thermometer and jab it into the middle through the side half way between front and back and read the temperature.
It should be very close to 120, when the chops are at 120 turn the grill off and tent it with foil for a few minutes while you are preparing your plates for service.

That's it.

Stuff you will need:

3 or 4 pork chops 1/2 to 3/4 inch thickness
1/2 cup brown sugar packed
1/2 cup Kosher salt if using regular salt reduce by 33%
2 quarts water.
salt and pepper.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easy Low Cal Dessert

We are going over to some friends house this afternoon for Easter Dinner, and I volunteered to bring a dessert.
Knowing that there are nice pears available , and some of the people are watching their caloric intake, I needed a low cal offering

You might see a trend here now some times, sometimes not, but in the last couple of weeks it has been on "EASY". I get into ups and downs into the amount of time I want to spend making something, maybe the weather , maybe the season, maybe the appetite, maybe the lack of specialized who knows?

This will take about 45 minutes to make but it looks great and better yet tastes great.

It is simple, basic, and easy.
Braised Pears..........
Sort of Poached Pears,
Anyway they are pears that you let swim in shallow waters for about 30 to 40 minutes until ready, let cool, then serve either cool or at room temperature.

First of all you need some firm pears. You need firm ones because if they are real ripe or starting to get mushy after 30 minutes of a bath, they WILL become mushy..........mushy pears not a good thing, unless you are 95 years old and lost all your teeth.......not there yet, myself!

Wash the pears, and remove the center cores. You probably have a pear or apple de-coring device. It's the one that is waaay back in the junk drawer, sort of looking half way between a peeler and a device to remove cheery pits......
If you don't have one you can make one from a short piece of 3/4 inch copper water pipe, or just spend the 2 bucks and buy one. Who knows you may like the recipe and will want to make it again!

So, peal the pears with a vegetable peeler, be careful not to remove more than you need, then remove about 1/4 inch of the bottom of the pear so it will sit vertically in a pan without falling over etc, and then plunge the corer into the middle, twist and remove the core.
If you mad one out of a 8 inch piece of pipe you will need to ram a handle of a wooden spoon to remove the core from inside the pipe.

Yes you could use a 9/16 wooden electric drill bit and drill it out, but it becomes messy because of the speed of the drill and it flinging the pear parts all over. I have seen this done before and it is doable but the clean up takes 5 minutes.......

Now that you have all the pears, cored , sitting flatly on their flat bottoms, you are ready to make the bath water ( so to speak).
Take two to three cups of red wine, any will do, preferably something left over from a few bottles something that you will not use anymore, and toss that into a skillet.
Turn on medium heat and toss in 1 CUP of sugar, white or brown is fine.
One the sugar is combined with the wine and bubbling, place the pears into the bath, and start covering the pears with the bath juice. Do this once every 3 to 4 minutes .
You will notice that the liquid will start to thicken and become more and more like syrup.
Thant's the plan........
After about 25 minutes the syrup will start to be about right, and the pears should have taken on a nice garnet color.
Keep basting the pears.
Test one to see if it is become soft, by sticking in a small knife somewhere in the lower section, if soft then turn off the heat, let cool and that's it!

TO serve,
Place one pear onto a small dish or dessert glass, use the thick syrup to drizzle over, since it has cooled the syrup should be very syrupy.......
If you want toss some chopped nuts over it, or just add a little chopped mint........
Nice dessert, no butter, no flour, no fat just a little calories from the sugar, but very little.
Lots of nice taste........

Stuff you will need:

4 to 6 pears depending on # required.

2-3 cups of red wine
1 CUP of sugar

* you could add a dash of the following spices if you like for complexity.

all spice
black pepper

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fast and Easy Fish

Lots of times I just don't feel like spending more than about 10 minutes to throw dinner together. This is fast and easy. You do need an oven, so if you are ovenless , sorry!

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Chop the cloves of garlic, fine chop the parsley, roll the lemon up and down on the counter to loosen it to get more juice out.

Wash the fillets and dry with paper towels. Into a 9 x 12 ovenproof dish, spray some non stick pan coating or brush the bottom with butter. Place the fillets into the dish, brush with butter, toss garlic and parsley on top, dash of salt and pepper and one final brush of butter. drizzle with a little of the lemon juice.

Toss into the hot oven for 10 to 12 minutes until the fish is flaky.
Remove and squezze more lemon, and serve.

Stuff you will need.

2 talapia fillets
3 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
1 handful parsley
2 TBS melted butter
salt and pepper

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