We had the first artichokes of the season last weekend.
In celebration I wanted something simple to make that required a minimum of my attention.
Thus a recipe is born.
I used both butter and oil in browning the shallots. Oil keeps the butter from burning and butter adds a nice flavor. I wanted them crispy brown rather than caramelized so I was using medium heat – which is what works on my cook top.
Pork Medallions with Mustard Pan Sauce
Total time: 30 minutes
- 1 pork tenderloin, 14oz (420gr), sliced 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick
- 3 large shallots, sliced
- 2 tbs olive oil, divided
- 1 tbs butter
- 2 tbs Dijon-style mustard
- 1/4 cup (2oz, 60ml) chicken broth
- 1/4 cup (2oz, 60ml) dry sherry
- Sauté shallots in butter and 1 tbs oil over medium heat until brown and crisp, 10 – 20 minutes, depending on skillet and heat.
- In a separate skillet, brown pork medallions in remaining 1 tbs oil on both sides, about 10 minutes total.
- Add mustard, sherry, chicken broth to skillet and stir to combine.
- Cover. reduce heat to low, and finish pork, about 5 minutes longer.
- Spoon most of the sauce onto a small platter.
- Add pork chops and drizzle remaining sauce over the top.
- Sprinkle with browned shallots and serve.
Two things happened today that made me start thinking…. and we know how treacherous that can be.
First, I was looking for some recipe ideas for cod. I’m tired of salmon, and cod is the other fresh fish that mon mari complains the least about.
Really – it’s so bland, what is there to complain about?
I keyed in a few words and started searching.
I found a recipe title that appealed to me so I started scrolling.
After going past 12 (I counted), in the immortal words of Arlo Guthrie ‘eight by 10 color glossy pictures‘ of every ingredient and every step I still had not gotten to the recipe.
Frustrated, I closed the page and decided I’d just see what looked good at the market.
Second, a friend on Facebook posted a comment about someone ‘taking the temperature of water with a thermometer before adding the egg’.
A perfectionist, perhaps?
So I asked myself: Are the food blogs with all the photos making people afraid to cook?
Are novice cooks so afraid of screwing something up that they do nothing?
Is fear of not having an Instagram-able photo paralyzing would-be cooks?
The other night I was unexpectedly cooking for myself. Mon mari wasn’t feeling his best so he made himself (yes, you read that correctly) a couple of soft-boiled eggs and some toast.
That left me to my own devices, so to speak….
There was a leftover bit of cabbage that I was going to toss, but it was just enough for one person. I chopped it and put in a small skillet with some butter. When it was wilted, I added 1/4 cup of barley and 1/2 cup of chicken stock and covered it. 15 minutes later I added a small can of tuna, a leftover bit of Greek yogurt and the last bit of shredded cheese.
I did a great job of cleaning out the fridge.
It looked like the dog’s dinner.
If it tasted as bad as it looked I gave myself permission to actually make it the dogs’ dinner (they eat anything)
It was great.
Maybe the recipes with all the photos make cooking too intimidating for a novice cook.
Maybe they should have permission to do some spontaneous, creative, who cares, cooking that will never be seen on Instagram.
My first cook books didn’t have photos. My favorite cook books still don’t.
If one doesn’t know how each step of a dish is supposed to look one doesn’t have to worry if it’s ‘right’.
Freedom to make mistakes and learn.
Or you can just look at the pretty pictures….
I have to go do something with that cod now.