Why I Am Posting These Recipes

I believe that it is healthier for an individual and for the planet to reduce the consumption of animal products in the human diet. However, I love to eat all kinds of delicious food, and find it really, really difficult to go totally vegetarian. Also, my family protests if I serve too many vegetarian meals in a row. So I am committed to making an effort to move towards a vegetarian diet without wholly doing so. I will post recipes several times a week that represent my philosophy of eating well, eating healthy, eating local. Most recipes will be easy to prepare, as I have a busy life. So I expect my followers to be people who love to cook and eat well, want to try to help the planet through their eating (by eating local foods and trying to reduce the use of meat in our diets), and have many other things to do each day besides cook.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Pork and Vegetables With Sage and Lemon Zest In Reduced Cream Sauce

I whipped this up in less than a half hour, and it was quite good.  I got the idea after watching "The Taste," a TV show on ABC.  One of the cook-contestants prepared a winning dish that she described as "braised pork in cream with lemon zest and sage."  All the judges loved it, so I thought that I might try to create a dish using leftover slow-cooked pork with cream, lemon zest and sage.  Since I am always trying to come up with ways to use smaller portions of meat with lots of vegetables, I pulled out what I had in the fridge:  broccoli, a carrot, a zucchini, a red pepper.  I figured that the pork that was braised in cream on the TV show had lots of flavor coming from the pork cooking in the cream.  Since I was starting with pork that was already cooked, I didn't have the juice that comes out from meat that is cooking and can flavor a sauce so nicely.  So I thought that if I started the dish with a sauteed onion, that could offer some flavor to the sauce.  The other vegetables also offer flavor.  This dish might not be as good as what people were eating on the TV show--I would not say it is "to die for"--but for a quick weeknight meal that is nicely palatable, I recommend it to you.  Everyone in my family enjoyed it.  It goes nicely with a glass of Oregon Pinot Gris!

1 onion, chopped
1 TBS coconut oil
1 carrot, cut lengthwise into 2” matchstick pieces
1 zucchini, cut lengthwise into 2” pieces
¼ red pepper, cut into 2” strips
1 c. chopped broccoli
¼ c. orange juice
2 TBS fresh sage leaves, chopped
grated zest from 1 lemon
½ pint heavy cream (possibly a little more)
2 cups cooked pork (such as leftovers from slow-cooked pork shoulder)
salt and pepper to taste

Heat coconut oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Saute chopped onion until translucent.  Add carrot pieces and zucchini pieces and continue to sauté.  Meanwhile, microwave chopped broccoli and orange juice together in a glass bowl, covered, for a minute.  After carrots and zucchini have cooked for a couple of minutes, add red pepper, fresh sage and grated lemon zest and stir.  Pour in heavy cream and turn heat to high.  Boil, stirring occasionally, until cream becomes thick, then spoon out microwaved broccoli and add it to the pan, along with the cooked pork.  Add a little more cream if it seems to need more sauce.  Stir until pork is heated and all meat and vegetables are coated with cream sauce.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Serve over couscous, rice, or another simple grain.  Serves 4.

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