Tuscan-Style Grilled Pork Chops with Balsamic Glaze

One of my favorite flavors of Italy is balsamic vinegar (aceto balsamico). In Tuscan homes it is a staple ingredient. Dark, glossy, sweetly sour, balsamic vinegar is the perfect condiment for both salads and desserts. Or try the lighter version, an aged white balsamic vinegar, almost like honey — it can transform any dish with just a little dash. If you are after the richest, most complex balsamic vinegar flavors, look for an aceto balsamico tradizionale DOP.

When I came across this recipe, originally for ribs, I knew I had to try it. The blend of spices in the rub adds a complex layer of flavors that doesn’t overwhelm the meat, but simply raises it to a new level. This past weekend, we served these to a group of foodie enthusiasts who had hob-knobbed all over the world. When I heard them explain, “these are the best ribs I’ve ever put in my mouth! Sister, I must have the recipe,” I felt pretty pleased! If it worked for ribs, why not transform an ordinary pork chop into a culinary masterpiece? Fresh off the grill, they are juicy and sweet with the balsamic glaze kicking it up that extra notch.

andiamo mangiare!

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Tuscan-Style Grilled Pork Chops with Balsamic Glaze
SERVINGS
4
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
7 mins
PREP TIME
10mins
READY IN
2.5hrs

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, rosemary, kosher salt, fennel, black pepper, sage, thyme, paprika, crushed red pepper, coriander and allspice. Rub the spice paste all over the pork chops and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours or refrigerate overnight.
  2. Preheat your gas grill. Brush both sides of your pork chops with the balsamic vinegar and place on the hot grill and grill for 4 min. on one side, or until the pork releases from the grill. Brush again with the balsamic vinegar and flip over. Grill for 3 min. on the other side. Remove from grill and serve immediately.

Note: If using this recipe to make ribs, follow step 1. Preheat the oven to 325°. Arrange the ribs on a large, rimmed baking sheet or roasting pan, meaty side up. Roast the ribs for 2 hours, or until tender. Preheat the broiler. Brush the meaty side of the ribs with the balsamic vinegar and broil 6 inches from the heat until browned, about 2 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes, then cut between the ribs and serve.

Turkey Cutlets

Taking care of guests who are on special diets has always been a challenge that has appealed to me. We do whatever we can to accommodate the food needs of our visitors so that they can be blessed during their time here, without the distraction of having to worry about their food needs.

A few nights ago, our Bethany guest cook asked me to help her prepare a dinner for a visitor who was gluten-free and didn’t eat red meat. She had turkey cutlets, and assorted vegetables so we set about to make something that we hoped would satisfy two people, and do so in a short amount of time. This result was more than satisfying to both guests and cooks.

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Turkey Cutlets
SERVINGS
2people
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
people
COOK TIME
30minutes
PREP TIME
15minutes
READY IN
45minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in pan, finely mince half the cleaned mushrooms and all the scallions. Sauté in melted butter till soft and golden adding sage, 1/4 c sherry and simmer till soft and liquid is absorbed.
  2. Spread 1/2 mixture on each cutlet. Roll up and fasten together with toothpick if necessary.
  3. Brown each cutlet in remaining butter. Finish cooking in 325 degrees oven about 15 minutes.
  4. Add remaining sherry to onion mushroom mixture and simmer. Pour over cutlets after plating them.

We served these with fresh asparagus,mashed yam with a few halved mushrooms as garnish.

Hot Chicken Salad Puffs

It seems we barely get cleaned up from one reception, and it’s time to prepare for another. We have many events happening on a regular basis and they almost always are accompanied by the serving of food or refreshments of one kind or another. At a recent reception we revised an old favorite that met with a great response. We served this hot chicken salad in little cream puffs and they disappeared so quickly we couldn’t keep the trays filled.

Hot Chicken Salad Puffs

 

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Hot Chicken Salad Puffs
SERVINGS
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
65 - 70mins.
PREP TIME
READY IN

Ingredients

Instructions

Hot Chicken Salad Puffs
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Lightly grease 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
  3. In a large bowl mix the chicken, celery, mayonnaise, lemon juice, onion salt, spices, onion and almonds.
  4. Transfer to the baking dish, and top with Cheddar cheese and crushed potato chips.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, until lightly browned.
  6. Fill cream puffs, arrange on platter and serve.
Cream Puffs
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Lightly grease (or line with parchment paper) two baking sheets.
  3. Combine the water, butter and salt in a medium-sized saucepan, heat until the butter has melted and bring to a rolling boil.
  4. Add the flour all at once, stirring vigorously until the mixture smooths out and follows the spoon around the pan; this should take less than 30 seconds.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat, and let the mixture cool for 5 to 10 minutes.
  6. It will still feel hot. Transfer the dough to a mixer.
  7. Beat in the eggs one at a time; the mixture will look curdled, but when you add the last egg it should become smooth.
  8. Beat for 1 minute after adding the last egg. You will have a stiff, smooth batter.
  9. Drop the dough by Tablespoonful’s onto the prepared sheets.
  10. Leave about 2″ between them.
  11. Bake for about 20 minutes, till they have puffed, they are medium golden brown and they look dry.
  12. Remove baked puffs from the oven and use a sharp knife to cut a slit into the side of each puff, for steam to escape; this will help prevent them from becoming soggy.
  13. Return the puffs to the oven for 5 minutes, then remove from oven and transfer to a rack to cool.
  14. Slit each puff in half around the circumference and fill with a heaping Tablespoonful of chicken salad.
  15. Replace the top.