Monday, November 06, 2023

Day of Rest Dinner

(Sorry no pictures -- it's a day of rest!)

Today is my holy day of inobligation (although I am in touch via text if needed); there is something so valuable about being able to sleep late, even if one ends up not doing so (I rose around 9 am; I'd have loved another hour, but...alas).

I will skip over most of the day, because it was blissfully free of anything controversial or stressful. The other priest -- whose day of rest is tomorrow -- got home around 3 pm; by which point I had already done some prep for dinner (and some was completed over the past few days). The plan for dinner was pork chops; I'd be happy with steak every week, but that's a bit extravagant. Despite all, pork chops are still a good bargain.

The big decision (several days ago) was wet vs. dry brine; the difference literally is water. I brine my chops with salt, pepper, dried rosemary and onion powder. If wet, I start it about 3-4 days ahead, so I can then dry them out; this time, I did a dry brine, which meant coating the chops with the aforementioned seasoning, but no need to dry them out. The reason for going for wet: I think it helps the flavors penetrate the meat better. The reason for going dry: you get a better sear. After this round, I confirmed my belief that wet is, on balance, better.

The side dishes were sauteed apples and onions, and a tomato salad. Here's a hint: when you have something fatty and rich (like steak or chops), it helps to have something a little acidic to balance it. In this case, I did the tomato salad because I had tomatoes, and they needed to be used up. The sauteed apples and onions are just such a nice combo with pork.

What wine? I think dry rose or Zinfandel is so good -- what do you think? I had a part-bottle of dry rose, and we used that up; but no Zinfandel (alas!); so we opened a bottle of Chardonnay and had part of that. 

Now we're fixing to watch a little TV, with maybe some ice cream later. Yes, I know, it's not even six! But my compadre prefers to eat early and well, and that's fine. 

If you want to know how I make any of these things...ask in the comments and I'll tell you.


Anonymous said...

This sounds great and it always makes me feel good to hear of a priest truly enjoying a day of rest. I would like to hear about the apples and onions sauté. I have lived a long time in the Midwest and that is still a mystery to me.

Fr Martin Fox said...


It's easy!

Start with equal amounts of apples and onions, yellow, white or even red will work. In other words, two apples, and two onions, close is fine. Slice them up thin.

In a big frying pan, melt a few tablespoons of butter; when melted, turn temp to about medium, so you don't burn the butter; add onions first, then after they soften a little, add apple slices. Season it all with salt and pepper to taste; don't be shy with the pepper. Saute the onions till soft, and the apples till they get some color on them. About half-way through (really, anytime), sprinkle with ground sage.