Tonight we had a full house for dinner: Jay, Edith, Mark. I made five of these pork chops, which were huge since they needed to be thick enough to stuff. Between the five of use, we ate three chops. They were delicious, stuffed with dates and cherries. The quinoa pilaf was really good too, and substantial enough to be a vegetarian main dish.
Anyone who knows me probably knows about my baking nemesis. Most bakers have one, something that they just can’t ever made successfully. Mine is pumpkin pie. Hated pumpkin pie. Still, I attempt it at least once a year, in a never-ending quest to find a foolproof recipe that even I couldn’t screw up. It’s always something, either the filling turns out wrong, or something is wrong with the crust, or it explodes into flames upon serving. Okay, maybe not that last one but I wouldn’t be surprised.
I wrestled with this recipe. The crust is perfect. Easy to make, easy to handle, tender, flaky, delicious. The filling turned out okay. Larry expressed skepticism over the praline. I couldn’t decide between using my Pyrex pie pan, which is actually 9.5″, or my standard little aluminum 9″ pie pan. Use the 9″, even though I really wanted to use the Pyrex. I went to pour the filling into the crust… and it almost overflowed. Pan was too small. I filled it as much as possible, then put the rest into a ramekin to bake into a custard as a snack for Larry (which he loved).
In the end, the pie turned out okay according to those who ate it (not me, I hate pumpkin). The sugar on the top wouldn’t melt, but using my kitchen torch only resulted in burning the praline, so I gave up. The filling was good, the crust was good. I’m on the hunt for a 9″ Pyrex dish, which is probably a little deeper than my aluminum pan. And I’ve picked out another pumpkin pie recipe to try out.
- Stuffed Pork Chops with Port, Pecans and Dried Fruit (The Best of America’s Test Kitchen 2008, p. 187)
- Quinoa Pilaf with Caramelized Onions & Toasted Pecans (A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen, p. 272)
- Sauteed Greens with Cannellini Beans and Garlic (Bon Appetit, April 2008)
- Pumpkin Praline Pie (The Best of America’s Test Kitchen 2008, p. 276)
Wine: Ridge 2006 Nervo Zinfandel