Donna Hay

Sage-Crusted Pork Chop with Celeriac & Pear Remoulade and The Ultimate Cabbage Salad

7/03/2011 05:15:00 PM

On Thursday last week, I suddenly got the idea in my head that I really wanted to make a nice, proper dinner.  I had some sage in the fridge and was reading the latest Donna Hay magazine on the tram to work... and with that fortuitous combination of events, this is the menu I decided on:

A Wintry Meal for 2
Sage-Crusted Pork Chop
Celeriac & Pear Remoulade
The Ultimate Cabbage Salad (recipe below!)
Onion Gravy

The pork chop and remoulade recipe come from the Jun/Jul 2011 issue of Donna Hay magazine; I made up the cabbage salad recipe (inspired by a wonderful salad I recently enjoyed at Centonove); the chips were oven chips; and the onion gravy is Nigella's recipe from How to Eat.

I picked up the ingredients on the way home from work, and got cooking!  Cooking relaxedly, it took about 2 hours from start to finish, but if I'd been more organised and hyper (Jamie Oliver 30-minute-meals style), I could have easily cut it down to less than an hour.  Still, it really helped that I did most of the chopping in the food processor!

I started by slicing and cooking down the onions for the gravy.
Onions for onion gravy
I have mentioned this before, but to make this gravy, you cook down the onions with some sugar and marsala very slowly until meltingly soft.  Once that's done, you add flour and beef stock, and simmer for about 20 minutes, before whizzing it in a processor until smooth.  (I often leave out that last step).

While that was simmering, I dealt with the celeriac.  It's such an ugly vegetable, hehe!

Aah... it's much more refined-looking once shredded into thin matchsticks.  I used half a pear and about a quarter of the celeriac.

Many remoulade recipes get you to make the mayonnaise from scratch; naturally Donna's recipe just says to use a good store-bought mayonnaise.  Perhaps I'll make mash or soup with the remainder of the celeriac.

And now, the chops.  There is chopped fresh sage in the crumb mixture, as well as a touch of garlic.

One trick to get them really crispy is to make sure the crumbed chops are very dry before frying them.  I usually let them dry out on a rack for about half an hour before frying, and once they're cooked I let them drain on a rack (rather than on kitchen paper, where the steam would make the crumbs soggy).

The salad was, again, a food processor job.  As I mentioned above, I created this recipe, based on the memory of the most delicious cabbage salad I had at Centonove.  This refreshing and tasty salad is a perfect accompaniment to fried food, wodged into a sandwich, or greedily eaten by itself!  I've popped the recipe at the bottom of this post, in case you want to make it.  (And indeed you should!).
The Ultimate Cabbage Salad

Chips, Onion Gravy
I also fried a few whole sage leaves for a pretty garnish and extra crunch - a tip I picked up from Gill Radford.  I am totally loving sage at the moment!
Sage-Crusted Pork Chop

Phew!  And here it is all together:

Mmm... it was such a delicious dinner!  Quite a bit of work, yes, but well worth the effort.  If I were to make this again, I'd leave out the onion gravy.  I only included it because I was afraid the meat would be dry, but it was super juicy and tasty - no extra sauce required.

The Ultimate Cabbage Salad
An original recipe by Sarah Cooks

N.B. Apart from the cabbage and onion, amounts for all ingredients are very flexible.  If you prefer a well dressed salad, simply add more oil and vinegar.  Similarly, capers, chives and Parmesan cheese should be added to taste.

1/4 Savoy cabbage
1/4 red onion
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil, or to taste
2 tsp white vinegar, or to taste
Salt and pepper
3 tbs capers, or to taste
1 small bunch chives, finely chopped
50 g shaved Parmesan cheese

Chop the cabbage and red onion as finely as possible, preferably using a mandolin or the slicing disc on a food processor.  Place the cabbage and red onion in a wide, shallow bowl.  Sprinkle over the oil and vinegar, season with salt and pepper, and toss through to coat.  Sprinkle over the capers, chives and Parmesan cheese, reserving some for garnish.  Toss through to distribute evenly.  Garnish with the remaining capers, chives and Parmesan flakes.

Serves 4 as an accompaniment.

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  1. That cabbage salad *does* sound amazing - I love capers and cabbage together.

    I very rarely make 'proper' dinners like this, it's nice to plan and do it now and then. Nice tip about the pork chops, too :)



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