This kind of creamy, saucy meal seems like it belongs to late fall.
But a quickly fried pork chop in a rich pan sauce is perfect at the end of a cold spring day spent flying kites and picnicking in the thin sunshine.
Especially accompanied by a salad of thinly sliced fennel and tender greens dressed in olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
I used a recipe from Nigella Lawson's Nigella Express. It's a book I love to read but don't cook from that often. Although the recipes are fabulously quick, they are expensive to make--calling for things like garlic-infused oil and mixed bean salad and red current jelly and boneless cuts of meat.
This stuff always requires a special trip to the store.
But this recipe is totally worth the purchase of a bottle of hard cider.
It calls for whole-grain mustard. We only had a German yellow. Nigella says to bash boneless chops thinner. We used thick bone-in chops. It was still awesome.
Mustard Pork Chops (adapted from Nigella Lawson)
3 pork chops
2 teaspoons garlic oil
1/2 cup hard apple cider
1 T. Dijon, whole-grain, German, or other mustard (not American yellow)
1/3 cup heavy cream
Dry chops. Sprinkle on both sides with salt and pepper. Set your dinner plates on the stove to warm up next to you while you cook.
Heat oil in saute pan over medium high heat. Cook the pork chops until just done through, flipping once, about 6-7 minutes a side for thickish chops. Put on plate to rest.
Pour cider in pan and stir over heat, scraping up browned bits for a minute or two. Stir in mustard and cream. Add any juices that have leaked from your chops onto the plate.
Cook sauce a few minutes to thicken slightly. Plate chops and pour sauce over.
Serve with gnocchi or rice or something starchy to sop up sauce.