So I discovered how to make really good roasted potatoes today. I mean, the kids called them fries… and ate them all up. High praise indeed. And.. they were not deep fried, yet crisp on the outside, a little soft inside and overall just right!
I bought fingerling potatoes the other day and wanted to cook them somehow. It was very humid and warm today so I wanted to use the grill as much as possible. I cut the potatoes up in quarters the long way, tossed them in olive oil, seasoned them with a new find, Mixed-Up Pepper and coarse sea salt, and threw them into a grill basket.
The grill was on medium high to high (500 -550 F) with all burners on. I often grill indirectly (that is turn one burner off and grill over that burner.) This time I didn’t, and just scraped and turned the potatoes every 5 or 10 minutes. I would say I grilled them for about 30 to 35 minutes. They came out great; tasted as good as they looked. I’m pleased to have discovered this super easy method of cooking potatoes. I think it would work well with any baby potato.
And while we’re on the topic of food… I got real gourmet-ish last week and bought a mango at the produce market thinking I wanted to do something fruit salsa-ish with it. After poking around Allrecipes.com and a few other sites, I modified a pork chop recipe and I am pleased to announce that it was a success – for the adults at least ;). This isn’t to say that all my creative cooking attempts are successes… Indeed there have been some notable failures… but they don’t get published (like the very limp zucchini fries). I have many pictures of dishes I expectantly photographed, only to be greatly disappointed. But I digress. If you like grilled pork chops, and can cook them without completely drying them out this recipe is worth the effort in my humble opinion.
Grilled Porkchops topped with Tropical Salsa
1) Using a mortar and pestle (or in my case a bowl and spoon) mash the following seasoning into a paste: 1 clove garlic minced, 1 tsp chili powder, 1/8 – 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, 1/8 -1/4 tsp cardamon. Mix up to 1/2 tsp water to help make the paste.
2)Heat 1 tsp oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in spice paste and cook till it begins to bubble, about 30 seconds. Stir in1/4 cup white wine vinegar, cook without boiling for 2 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup sugar until it dissolves. Mix in 1 mango, peeled and chopped, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/2 to 1 tsp chopped fresh cilantro, 2 tsp. lemon juice. If you desire to, you can add a chopped jalapeno pepper. I found the salsa to be a mild to medium heat without it. Simmer for twenty minutes. Stir in 2 peeled and chopped peaches, 1 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce and 3 chopped pineapple rings. Simmer for ten more minutes. Season with pepper. Place in a bowl, cover and put aside if you are using it that evening. Otherwise refrigerate.
3) To prepare marinade for the 4-6 pork chops (I used bone-in), mix 2/3 cup of your tropical salsa with 1/3 cup soy sauce and 1/3 white vinegar. Place pork chops in a large resealable bag, and pour marinade on top. Seal and refrigerate for 1 hour.
4) Prepare grill for medium-high heat. Drain (and reserve) marinade. If you want to baste the pork chops while grilling, you can boil the marinade you just drained and use it.
5) Place pork chops on hot grill. Cook about ten minutes turning once. Cook a little longer for bone-in pork chops. Baste occasionally if you aren’t juggling five other things.
6) If your salsa was refrigerated, heat it up to at least room temperature or warmer and serve the pork chops topped with the salsa. Use the remainder of the salsa to spice up some rice, or for tomorrows grilled chicken.
As you can see, the salsa is more of a chunky sauce, but Tropical salsa sounds a lot more appealing. However, the flavor was fruity and complex, and complemented the pork very well. I used leftover salsa with chicken, tortilla chips (late at night once) and it never disappointed.
Well that’s my fit of culinary inspiration for the month. Tomorrow fish sticks and fries ;)
What have you been cooking lately?
ps did you see those green beans on the plate? First fruits from the garden!