They are succulent and juicy (so different from the dried out 'chops I've made in the past) and they have an amazing flavor to them. I baked mine in a 350 degree oven for about thirty minutes, and they came out juicy and flavorful from the pre-smoking process... Didn't even need to salt and pepper those suckers.
Of course, since my pouch and I have only had two months to get to know each other, I was careful and a bit reserved, but am happy to report that my pouch loved it!
I'd never heard of smoked pork chops before finding them at my local meat shop, Stewart Meats and I doubt I'll ever eat a regular pork chop again. For those of you who may be reading this from Washington state, Stewart Meats is located in Yelm, a short trip from Olympia - and a fun outing for Sunday drives that my guy and I like to do occassionally. It is an old-time meat market, before society adopted the one-stop-for-everything-under-the-moon super-centers that have become the norm for our society. I like shopping local when possible, and Stewart Meats is about as local as you can get, without owning your own pigs and cows in the back fourty!
Getting home and starting the Smoked Pork Chops recipe from Eating Well, I found it a simple and quick recipe to follow. Many of the ingredients I had in my pantry, proving that this would be a great recipe to make on a busy weeknight. The finished product was delish and tasty. I will admit that the pineapple 'salsa' per the recipe could have used a bit of tweaking. I couldn't put my finger on it, but I would recommend for those creative cooking types to go ahead and experiment, maybe add an additional ingredient to it. Perhaps finely diced jalapeno or another herb added to the mix? And even tho I mention playing with the warm pineapple salsa ingredients, I must say that there were no complaints in my household: John loved it! A great introduction to the Eating Well cookbook, and a good promise to the other recipes that are held in its pages.
Then again... with a smoked pork chop, you can't go wrong!
Accompanying the Smoked Pork Chop with Pineapple, was the cookbook's side dish of Creamed Spinach. I don't think I've ever had creamed spinach before, but I was pleasantly surprised. I ventured away from the recipe a bit, using Tofutti cream cheese and lactose-free milk, and in the end I couldn't even tell it wasn't real cream cheese.
Next from the cookbook will be a dill salmon recipe. Pacific Northwest all the way, yum yum yum! On a side note, John and I will be spending the weekend in Seattle. It will be my first time away from home since the surgery and I'm looking forward to two days of walking around Seattle and exploring. I can't wait to share with you all the pictures of our weekend adventures!
And now, what you are all probably curious about: the pictures from my first experience cooking with Eating Well After Weight Loss Surgery:
(A snapshot of the recipe.)
(The smoked pork chops resting on the cutting board before carving.)
(The ingredients for the warm pineapple salsa include: diced fresh pineapple, chilli pepper, water with a smidge of pineapple juice added, chicken broth, brown sugar subsitute and balsamic vinegar.)
(All of the above ingredients reducing into a yummy warm salsa for the smoked pork chops.)
(Frozen and thawed spinach, Tofutti cream cheese, Lactaid milk and sliced shallots.)
(After sautéing the shallots and creaming together the milk-type products, I stirred in the spinach.)
(Fresh grated nutmeg makes all the difference in the world - especially in cream sauces, yum!)
(John's dinner portion, including the Creamed Spinach. Although I can't have portions this size anymore, I still enjoy plating recipes and love the presentation of it!)
(My portion, about 1/4 cup all said and done!)