Even though I had already proven to myself that I could successfully cook a juicy pork chop, I was still a bit intimidated by this other white meat. Last time, there was a sauce to mask any hint of dryness. This time, aside from a dry rub of salt, pepper, and roasted garlic flakes, the chop would be naked.
Since Murdo started student teaching and is spending most nights in Plainfield, I've been cooking a lot of meals for one lately. In other words, I've been eating a lot of leftovers, fried rice, and simple slap-together dinners. But I decided that since I have all this meat and fish in my freezer -- the results of a sale in the meat section and an enthusiastic me returning home, ripping open the packages, and wrapping and labeling each individual cut for easy dinners-for-one -- I should probably, you know, eat some of it. Can you believe it? I actually planned ahead. I even defrosted the pork chop in the fridge the night before. Domestic goddess, I am.
I had some leftover cabbage from a batch of nilaga I made last month, and after pulling away a few nasty leaves, the thing was still good. Gotta love cabbage -- cheap, delicious, and keeps well. My kind of vegetable. So after browning the chop in olive oil and butter and setting aside, I threw in another small pat of butter and added the cabbage to the pan.
Meanwhile, some baby carrots that were starting to go bad in the fridge (are you noticing a "meals-made-with-almost-rotten-food" theme to this blog?) were a-roastin' in the oven, sprinkled with salt, pepper, and olive oil.
Ta-daa! Juicy (!!!) pork chop, buttery cabbage, and sweet roasted carrots. Nothing incredibly special, but it made me quite happy. The pork chop was a perfect single serving, as was the cabbage. And the leftover roasted carrots I enjoyed just a few minutes before writing this post, with a generous squeeze of lemon.