I have spent the past couple of days tweaking with my new espresso machine. It makes a pretty darn good coffee drink. It's so nice to be able to have an espresso at home and not pay upwards of 2 bucks for one. It kind of looks like a robot. A robot that delivers nutty, buttery, coffee goodness into my jittery hands. But alas, I must move on to more relevant things...
I made some cider glazed pork chops last night. It's a pretty simple dish. Paired it with a new invention of mine that I shall name, "belgian stovies." Basically, the stovies are much like scotch stovies, but instead of the celery leaves and cress, I just added shredded brussels sprouts. The chops are the easiest things in the world. Just season with salt and pepper and saute in a hot pan with veg oil/olive oil. (I add a little veg oil to the olive so it will bring the smoke point up). after both sides have been browned pour in a little cider (about 1/4 cup or less). the cider will thicken as you go, make sure that you are flipping and basting the browned chops in this pan sauce every once in a while. turn down to low, and depending on how much time you have for the rest of your meal, you may have to add a little bit more cider. adjust the seasoning and you're golden. (oh, I almost forgot. I cut the outside edges of the chops every 1/2 inch or so. this helps the fat render quickly)
the stovies: boil your potatoes (about 4 small) until fork tender. empty about 3/4 of the cooking liquid. Mash up a bit and add a big handful (3/4 cup?) of shredded brussels sprouts. stir well, and add some pepper. You did add a healthy bit of salt to your potato water before cooking, right? Of course you did. So, leave it out for now. stir, over lowish heat, every once in a while, adding more water if necessary. once you have achieved a consistency you like (they should be somewhat creamy looking, if you mashed them up.) taste, and adjust salt if necessary.
Other newsworthy news: yesterday was knife sharpening day. it was much needed, too. Razors, I tell you, razors. actually I was thinking about posting some knife tips. interested? Also, I have some christmas money to spend and was thinking about picking up a flash memory video camera so I could post vid segments. either that or I was going to buy a new skillet, or clothing, or a watch, or a wii.
Francis! Francis! espresso machines. So far so good. after I read the manual of course. when all else fails...you know the rest. www.illyusa.com
cuisinart chef's stainless series. My stainless saute pans of choice. you can't go wrong here. these will outlast you, my friend. very workhorsey and stylish to boot. 14 inch skillet regularly 100 clams, now 40 bucks! love this website. www.cutleryandmore.com/cuisinart_cookware.html