Friday, June 25, 2010

Pork Chops with Peach Chutney

It's peach season in Texas, and I just can't get enough! I made this recipe with some very ripe peaches, and I may just recreate it with all the delicious peaches my friends and I picked in Fredericksburg this weekend! While I had several burners going on the skillet, this recipe was quite simple to assemble. I served it with brown rice and very simple, yet delicious green beans - I'll definitely be making that recipe again.

Pork Chops with Peach Chutney

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 red onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
4 ripe peaches, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
4 boneless pork chops
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat a medium sauce pan on medium heat and warm 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add red onion and garlic and saute 5 to 7 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add vinegar and brown sugar and cook 2 to 3 minutes, bringing to a simmer. Stir in peaches and cook on medium-low heat for about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a large skillet on medium heat. Warm remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season pork chops with salt and pepper on both sides. Cook until done, about 2-3 minutes per side. Serve with the prepared chutney.

Rosemary Parmesan Green Beans

1 pound green beans, trimmed
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Steam green beans about 5-6 minutes, so that they maintain a slight bight. Toss with cheese, rosemary and olive oil, then season with salt and pepper to taste.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

May Food Adventures

Alas, there's been a blogging drought on Apron Adventures, but that's not for a lack of food festivities! The month of May was quite busy and the summer shows no signs of slowing down. Happily munching on a delicious peach fresh from the Republic Park farmer's market, let me catch you up:

The people at Ruth's Chris were kind enough to invite me to a tasting. Having come to Austin as a poor college student, I never really envisioned RC's as within my price range, so sadly I've never been (even though I've now worked 1 block away for the past 3 years!) All I can say is wow, I didn't know what I was missing. Who knew the magical equation of a thick, juicy steak plus salt and pepper plus 1,800 degrees (yes, that's no typo) would equal decadent bliss.

If you're looking for indulgent food beyond what you could imagine, The Trailer at Gibson is the place to go. Imagine a cheeseburger sandwiched between donut slices (surprisingly the sweetness of the donut countered with the meat quite nicely) and a hot dog wrapped in bacon topped with a fried egg. Note, this is not for the weak hearted! I'd recommend coming with a hungry group to get a taste of everything. Luckily, they serve our group of food bloggers with small tastes so we could enjoy everything.

Most notably, I took a trip to Seattle with Luke where we then proceeded to eat our way through the city for 5 blissful days. Here are just a few of the culinary highlights:
  • Palace Kitchen, a Tom Douglas restaurant that stays up late and serves classic cocktails and fantastic appetizers (though I've heard the burger is also to die for). We loved the lavender and goat cheese fondue!

  • How to Cook a Wolf, in the charming Queen Anne district, boasts an ever-changing menu and a space with merely 6 tables and an L-shaped bar. We sat mesmerized by the executive chef slicing and dicing and were oh-so-pleased with our gnoccheti and halibut.

  • Etta's, another Tom Douglas restaurant right down in Pike Place Market. We sampled an array of apps and salads, most notably the ahi tuna salad and bread salad with asparagus. We came in not that hungry but couldn't put our forks down!

  • The Harbour Public House, just a 40 minute Ferry Ride over to quaint Bainbridge Island, is a surprising jewel of a pub. Serving a large list of Washington beers and wines, we once again found ourselves indulging even when we weren't hungry. The menu was quite diverse, but we went for the Canadian favorite Poutine since neither of us had tried it before. The verdict: heavy but delicious!
We happened to be in Seattle during the Seattle Cheese Festival (an annual festival that occurs in Pike Place Market - did I mention it's free?!) Besides the dozens of samples we enjoyed, we watched a session on how to make your own mozzarella. I'd long toyed with the idea of making my own, and this was just the motivation I needed! Over Memorial Day I trekked to Central Market to buy mozzarella curd and proceeded to make my own. The process is a bit tricky, however the most difficult part was reaching into scalding water and handling the cheese! My mozzarella turned out quite tasty (I made it into a margherita pizza with fresh homemade pizza crust), but I think I'll leave cheese making to the experts :)

Now grilling season is upon us and I feel obligated to tell you to go buy the June issue of Food & Wine. They feature one of my favorite grilling magazine features, grill once eat twice. I made not one, not two, but THREE of those recipes in one weekend. Do yourself a favor and check it out :)