After a late evening shearing sheep with the help of neighbors, we reentered our home with well-earned appetites. I had done the prep work on this recipe hours earlier. So it was the matter of about thirty minutes before we set down to a late meal.
This is a favorite recipe, using ingredients produced on our farm.
Season a couple of inch-thick pork chops with salt and pepper and any herbs you like. Heat up a cast iron skillet and throw a knob of butter into the pan. Cook the chops about ten minutes a side. I’ll usually throw more butter into the pan when I turn them over. When the chops are done put them into the oven to keep warm.
Fry a few strips of bacon in the same skillet. Remove the bacon and add one chopped onion, sauté until soft. Add two diced garden tomatoes, a bit of wine or balsamic vinegar and let cook for a few minutes. Add some chopped homemade dill pickles (capers or olives also work well) and a large bunch of greens (about a pound). We used turnip greens last night but any garden greens would work.
Cover your skillet; turn the heat down to simmer for about five minutes. The greens start out bulky and piled high but quickly lose their volume within a few minutes. Uncover, crumble the bacon into the mixture and toss the ingredients. Spoon the ingredients over your pork chops so that it forms a nice pile on top. Make sure to spoon some of the pot liquor from the greens over the dish.
Before eating say a note of thanks to the pig (the one on your plate) and dig in. You might also thank me for turning you onto one of the best, and easiest, dinners in your repertoire.
Thanks to Mr. Reynaud for this recipe, from his French Feasts cookbook.
Reading this weekend: Plato’s Revenge: politics in the age of ecology by William Ophuls. I should, however, be reading the manual on our ancient New Holland manure spreader. A tension bar broke and I’m not sure if that might not signify something more technically advanced than my duct tape approach to all things mechanical would solve.