Some experimenting took place on the 10th and final day of the Cupboard Challenge when I needed to use up pork chops, apples and cider, but didn’t want to go the obvious (and for us, usual) route of pork in apple and cider sauce.
Soaking the dried plums in brandy or cognac isn’t entirely necessary, but I felt it added a welcome extra flavour dimension. If you haven’t got any hanging around, don’t worry, just skip the first step of the recipe.
To serve two
2 boneless pork chops
5-6 soft dried plums (prunes), chopped
3-4 tablespoons brandy or cognac
A splash of olive oil
A knob of butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 eating apple, skin on, chopped
Small sprig of fresh sage leaves
1-2 teaspoons wholegrain mustard
Packet of dried gluten free sage & onion stuffing mix (or you could mix gluten free breadcrumbs, chopped herbs and a little grated cheese – or you could use wheaty versions if gluten doesn’t hurt you)
Approx. 150ml dry cider
150ml (ish) single cream
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Set the oven to preheat at gas mark 5/190°C/375°F
If using brandy/cognac, place chopped prunes into a shallow bowl and sprinkle over alcohol.
I didn’t feel it necessary, but if you’d like to quickly brown off each side of your chops in a hot frying pan, now’s the time.
Add cider to the remaining cooked apple, plum and onion mix, simmer until liquid is reduced to around half.
Tip into a food processor/blender, add cream and blitz.
Return to pan and cook down until thickened. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Spoon a puddle of sauce onto the plate and place pork chop on top. We had ours with mashed potato and broccoli, which was ok; however, I think a mixed root mash and mangetout would have been even better. What do you think?