Growing up in a large family, who sat down together for dinner every night, served me well. Taking meals together is important for our physical and emotional well-being. We need that time to talk with each other, to catch up on our daily activities, and it's equally important to me that we serve fresh, home-cooked food. My mother managed to feed six children and two adults just about every night of the week. Our plate consisted of a portion of meat, a vegetable, and a starch. Portions were well-balanced and nutritious. Most meals were accompanied with a tossed salad of lettuce, peppers, tomatoes, and cukes. She dressed it with olive oil, red wine vinegar, onion and garlic salt, and pepper. Simple, yet delicious. She knew the perfect balance of oil to vinegar, so it wasn't too tangy, nor dripping in dressing. The flavors of the vegetables were enhanced, not overpowered. She has said she isn't a great cook, perhaps adequate, but I disagree. She made basic, simple, straightforward meals prepared with fresh ingredients, and they were delicious.
My mother has a knack for coming up with some tasty combinations and her pork chops continue to be one of my favorites. I love preparing simple, delicious home-cooked food for my family. It's the power of example at work, for sure.
Mum's Pork Chops
4 Pork Chops (preferably with the bone-in, much tastier that way)
2 cloves of sliced garlic
1 tbsp of Tamari or Soy Sauce
1 tsp sugar or 1 tbsp of Mirin
2 scallions, sliced
Marinate the pork chops for about 2-3 hours, turning occasionally. Grill over medium heat until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. I cooked 1 inch chops for about 12 minutes on each side.
Green Beans with Shallots and Lemon
1 lb of green beans
4 Shallots sliced thinly
Zest from one small lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Tsp of Mirin
Tbsp olive oil
Tbsp butter (optional, if you choose to omit add a little more olive oil)
Snip the ends of the beans and steam until just tender. Drain and set aside. Melt the olive oil and butter in a saute pan. Saute the shallots until they just start to brown, add the lemon zest and cook for 2 minutes. Add the beans to the pan and combine with the shallots and lemon. Squeeze the 1/2 lemon over the beans. Heat until the beans are warm.
Thanks, Mum xo