Thursday, May 04, 2006

Popping the Cookbook's Cherry

On Saturday, whilst meandering throught the Food section of our local Borders store, Dan and I found a beautiful enchanting book (that I've had my eye on for sometime). It was to be the first cookbook that we bought together. (I can hear you all making a various amount of sighing and ahhing noises now!) We bought Nigel Slater's The Kitchen Diaries.

It was love at first sight. As we flipped through the pages, I knew that this would be a book that would take pride and place on our coffee table - a book to flip through to engage the senses and to delve and dip into to spark the imagination. Nigel Slater has written such beautiful prose that sets the English cuisine and produce off beautifully.

So, on Sunday evening, when looking for inspiration on ways to cook the pork that we had bought the day before, Dan's first impulse was to dive into the book. Lo and behold, he found a Pork with Mustard Sauce recipe. Made with dijon mustard and dill pickle, the sauce was a perfect compliment to the Suffolk pork. We served it up with new season aspargus and a type of potato that we hadn't tried before - Anya.

Pork chops and mustard sauce

Pork spare rib or chump chops - 2 large, about 1 cm thick
Butter -25g
Olive oil - 1 tablespoon
Garlic - 2 large unpeeled cloves, squashed flat
A glass of white wine
Double or whipping cream - 150ml
Grain mustard - 1 1/2 tablespoons
Smooth Dijon mustard - 1 1/2 tablespoons
Cornichons - 8, or half as many larger gherkins

Rub the chops all over with salt and pepper. Put the butter and oil in a shallow pan set over a moderate to high heat and, whenthey start to froth a little, add the flattened garlic and the seasoned chops. Leave to brown, then turn and brown the other side. Lower the heat and continue cooking, turning once, until the chops are no longer pink when cut into.

Lift out the chops, transfer to a warm serving dish and keep warm. Pour off most of the oil from the pan, leaving the sediment behind, then turn up the heat and pour in the wine. Let it boil for a minute or so, scraping at the sticky sediment in the pan and letting it dissolve. Pour in the cream, swirl the pan about a bit, then leave it to bubble up a little before adding the mustards and the chopped cornichons.

Taste for seasoning; you may need a little salt and possibly black pepper. The sauce should be piquant and creamy. If you want, you can sharpen it up. Pour the sauce over the chops and serve.

Enough for 2 with sides of choice.

1 comment:

Andrew said...

Got to be my favourite cookbook at the moment too; love the photographs as well as the recipes. Agree with you on how good this one is.

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