Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Date Night or Any Night - This Is Perfect!

So, I came up with this really on the fly. I was at a loss for stuffing. I knew I had some great thick cut pork chops - I just didn't know what I wanted to stuff them with. I had fresh spinach - that was definitely on the list. A little thinking and chatting with some folks and I had it. Pan-seared, stuffed pork chops with spinach, leeks, and feta! The perfect accompaniment? A roasted green been and cherry tomato salad with a perfect home made red wine vinaigrette. Please people - don't buy the bottled stuff. You can make your own for a fraction of the cost and it tastes much better!

Oh - for a special treat - take a few leeks and season them with salt and pepper. Then coat them in cornstarch and deep fry them for about 45 seconds. It's a mini onion ring that goes great as a garnish (if they make it that far - I was snacking on them and they were really good).

Let's get cooking!

Pan Seared Stuffed Pork Chops with Spinach, Leeks, and Feta
4 thick cut pork chops
1 cup (about) leeks, rinsed, dried and chopped
2 cups of fresh spinach
1/2 cup of feta cheese
4 ounces (1/2 pack) of low fat cream cheese
1/3 cup of olive oil
1 table spoon of olive oil
1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
salt & pepper to taste
1/4 cup of flour

Simple! First preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Insert a pocket in the pork chops and liberally season with salt and pepper. Put to the side. In a sauté pan, coat the bottom with oil and sauté the leeks and spinach until wilted and soft. Season with salt and pepper. Let cool and in add to a bowl. Once cooled, add cream cheese, feta cheese, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper (be careful with the salt - feta cheese has a high sodium content). Mix well and stuff chops with mixture. Use toothpicks to close pork chops. Coat with flour and sear until golden brown on both sides. Don't worry about cooking the chops until their all the way done. Once golden brown, place in the oven to finish cooking - approximately 8-10 minutes.

Roasted Green Been and Cherry Tomato Salad
1 pound of fresh green beans, picked, cleaned, and washed
1 pound of cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup of olive oil
Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Combine all ingredients above and place on a cookie sheet. Roast for approximately 12 minutes or until the green beans are tender and the tomatoes begin to release their juices. Let cool and toss with homemade red wine vinaigrette (recipe listed below)

Red Wine Vinaigrette
2 minced garlic cloves
1/2 cup of really good olive oil
4 tablespoons of red wine vinaigrette
1 table spoon of Dijon mustard
1/2 tablespoon of salt
1 tablespoon of fresh ground pepper
A good squeeze of lemon juice

Combine all ingredients above really well - that's it!

Prepping the beans and tomatoes

The red wine vinaigrette-please stop buying it and make your own!

Spinach, leek, and feta stuffing - see the red pepper flakes?

The stuffed chops...ready for coating and cooking!

The finished salad - ready for the dressing!

My plate - click on the pic to enlarge it!

Happy face plate - it was GOOD!


Nikki Miller-Ka said...

You really put your foot in this meal. This is the best meal you've put together, yet.

For real.

I think feta is a little strong, but I'd use goat cheese or low-fat Laughing Cow cheese in my chops.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Awesome! Both recipes sound and look terribly scrumptious! A real treat! Now, I'm hungry ;-P...



Jan said...

I love, love, love that! Mmm yum feta too - what more could you want.

Keisha "Kitten" Isaacs said...

Boy if I ate pork....I'd CHOP this up....looks yummy though....

Prudy said...

YOu rock! Congrats on not just a gorgeous dish, but on your well deserved publicity of late! You're going to be famous!

Foodycat said...

The dish looks good - you really know how to make a woman drool, but deep fried leeks? Best idea I have heard all day!

Ticia said...

I will try this also -

Natashya said...

This would be the ultimate date night food. A nice bottle of red and a view...
Beautifully prepared - and the leek rings? Inspired!
Congrats on your profile. I am liking the new picture too, I can actually see you!

Don said...

Yeah I saw your cooking blog nominated for BlackWeblog. And I think it's a shame if you don't win cause this post along tells me one thing - you throw down in the kitchen.

LBJ said...

This is a great meal. Its amazing the way the mind works when you're hungry and you wan to throw something together!

As an alternative to pork, try salmon. "Keisha Kitten" doesn't eat pork, but salmon will pair well with the spinach, feta and fried leeks, and it'll cook in less time too!

I would be full after one chop.,

Great meal!

Jen (Modern Beet) said...

the leek 'mini-onion rings' sound amazing!

the last time I tried to cook porkchops I had the unfortunate experience of having my pyrex pan explode in the oven! lesson: don't pour boiling broth into a glass pan that's been preheating in a 425 degree oven... :( Perhaps I'd have better luck with these though

Cynthia said...

Oh gosh Darius, nothing like a stuffed pork chop!

Christina said...

I love leeks, so this filling has got to be delicious. Nice work!

Roasting green beans is my favorite way of cooking them. Tossed with olive oil, kosher salt, and pepper, roasted until it gets a bit charred, then eaten like French fries!

Bridgett said...

Wow, those thick chops look mouthwatering. You are right, these would be perfect for a date night. No way a date can resist that!

Keith said...

Once Again...Bravo to the Chef!

A Go Bytch said...

Can I hate you and love you in the same sentence? Okay I need to step my game up ....LOL.

Go B.

fuzzy said...

As I steal the recipes! :) I'm gonna try this out, for real for real!

Anonymous said...

Hey that's what i want for dinner! Yum! Stuffed pork chops i love and your version looks delicious. What did the date had to say? :-)

Dee said...

Oh, very nice D! I love the stuffed pork chops, but the leek rings are brilliant!

Teresa said...

Love the sound of that stuffing! And the leek rings ... mmmmm!

Sandie said...

Nice blog you have here! Believe it or not, I just found your site from a comment you left on Sookie's blog about adding Cream of Wheat to pancake batter (definitely going to try that).

I really enjoyed this post & recipe. You've got a lot of nice flavors going on here. And congrats on joining We used to live in the Chicago area and I have so many great memories of our time there (and the restaurants! I really miss the restaurants).

Dragon said...

I'm in love with crispy leeks. They make the best garnish! My mouth is watering just looking at those stuffed pork chops. Why didn't you save me one? Meanie. :(

JMom said...

Great combination! Your pork chops and veggies look delicious. Great photos too.

Love your blog!

Lori Lynn said...

This is what I like most:
Your granite counter top.
The triangle plate.
The pic of the raw stuffed chops.
That stuffing!

Please keep me posted on the Tequila Lime Cooler :)

glamah16 said...

Now Im asking where was my invite:-). Looks so ggod.

Nina Timm said...

That is one awesome looking meal. I just love the look of that stuffed pork chop.

Kevin said...

Those stuffed pork chops sound really good!

Jeanne said...

Wow - I'd never thought of stuffing pork chops, but I will certainly try now. Feta and spinach is such a classic combo - love it :)

rebecca said...

At The Seaside


When I was down beside the sea

A wooden spade they gave to me

To dig the sandy shore.


The holes were empty like a cup

In every hole the sea camp up,

Till it could come no more.

-----by age of conan


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