Thursday, May 13, 2010

Farmer's Market Pork Chops

I'm currently reading The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan, so my writing opportunity with Local In Season could not have come at a better time. The folks at LIS approached me after reading this very blog, and I knew it was a position I could not pass up. How could I not be passionate about supporting local farmer's, business owners, and chefs that utilize locally-grown and locally-made food?

With all this being said, last Saturday I had to cover the Waltham's Early Bird Farmer's Market for LIS - you know, the Saturday where it was raining and lightning? My recap of the event will be on LIS soon, but let's just say the sense of community and commitment I felt from each and every vendor that day was outstanding. I wanted to buy something from everybody to help support their hard work and dedication, but, unfortunately, spending that kind of dough isn't my reality.

Instead, I settled on buying just a few items, including some Vegetable Havarti cheese from Smith's Country Cheese in Winchendon. Smith's offers a variety of fresh Gouda, Havarti and Cheddar cheeses, and even had samples of each and every one of them out on Saturday. I settled on the vegetable flavor because it was so unique - the familiar vegetable flavors tickled their way across my tastebuds, while the creamy, slightly tangy flavor of the Havarti lingered beautifully in the background.

Earlier this week, I decided to use just a little bit of the cheese (the rest I saved for another recipe) with some other vegetables I had in my fridge to make some decadent stuffed pork chops.

Vegetable Havarti & Spinach-Stuffed Pork Chops
Yields: 2 servings

-2 pork chops, sliced lengthwise down the middle
-4 slices of Smith's Country Cheese Vegetable Havarti
-1/8 cup chopped onion
-1 cup spinach (I used Olivia's Organic Single Salad to Go, $1.99)
-1 tsp. garlic
-2 tbsp. olive oil
-Salt and pepper
-Herbs de Provence
-White wine

Directions: Sautee onion in pan with 1 tbsp. olive oil, until onions are translucent. Add spinach, and cook until slightly wilted (for about 1 minute). Take off heat, and let cool slightly. While cooling, add two slices of Havarti to inside of sliced pork chops. Spoon equal parts of spinach and onion mixture inside, then close pork chops with a tooth pick to hold them together. Season pork chops with salt, black pepper and herbs de provence. Cook in frying pan with remaining olive oil until brown on each side. Add garlic and a little white wine to pan, and cook off for 30 seconds. Cover pan with tin foil and place in 350 degree oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until cooked through completely.

The olive oil, fat from the pork and white wine made a luxurious sauce, while the creamy cheese melted wonderfully throughout the inside of the meat. The spinach and onions worked really well with the flavor of the cheese, too, although I could have easily added more spinach (mental note for next time).

Reminder: You have until TOMORROW MORNING to enter my giveaway for a chance to attend Taste of the Nation in Portland, Maine for FREE! 

1 comment:

  1. I freakin' love pork chop, can't wait to try this. -Simone