Saturday, April 30, 2011


I'm not going to lie. Tonight's dinner was so pretty that I fell in love with it while it was cooking, before I ever tasted it. I made Veal Chops with Rosemary Butter (pg 268) and Endives, Apples, and Grapes (pg 338), except that I had to make major substitutions in each.

 For some bizarro reason, H-E-B, which is the monopoly supermarket in Texas, has no endive. When I lived in Virginia, I saw them all the time, but never knew what to do with them, so never tried one. Perhaps Texans are not endive-lovers. There wasn't even an empty spot for them on the produce shelf. I panicked for a moment, and then remembered Dorie saying in her intro to the recipe that the bitterness of the endive contrasted well with the sweetness of the fruit. Aiming for bitter, I bought a raddichio. I'm not sure where raddichio falls on the bitterness scale when compared to an endive, but Matt and I agree that it was too bitter to be pleasant. I like the idea of bitter with the fruit, and hope that an endive would be subtler. It sure did look pretty, simmering away in butter, though...
Purty food
Conclusion: LOVE. Sweet, warm, caramelized fruit. Mmmmm. I can think of so many meats I would pair this with.

I'm sure veal chops would have been delicious, but the pork worked out just fine. Like so many of the recipes in this book, it tastes like it should be more work than it is. The chops are seasoned with fresh rosemary and thyme, then cooked in butter. Basically, by the time they're brown on each side, they're done. Then, just deglaze the pan and make a quick sauce, and top the chop with a pat of rosemary butter. The sweet apples and grapes enhanced the salty, herby flavors of the pork. Me like.
I need to learn to plate food nicely. One of these days.
Conclusion: Like the pork chops a lot. I'm not going to put them in the love category, because I'm not sure if I would have been as impressed without the apples and grapes. Regardless, this was a wonderful dinner.

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