Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Grilled Pork Chops with Lemongrass and Ginger

As we were putting away the air conditioning unit, I thought to myself, “we just put this thing up not long ago, where did summer go?” We had a very unusual damp and cool summer this year, but we managed to get some warm sun rays here and there. Now, the air is getting a little bit chilly and crisp, but barbecue season is not over until it’s really over. That is, when we get our first snow storm.

As you may have noticed, I have been posting healthy vegetarian recipes lately, but it doesn’t mean that I always eat that healthy. Today, I was in the mood to have grilled pork chops marinated in an aromatic blend of lemongrass, ginger, garlic and fish sauce. I always found pork to be one of the tastiest meats when nicely browned, and a simple marinade will do just fine. I don’t like to overkill pork with a hundred spices. This is why I enjoy this marinade…it’s simple and gives the pork meat that extra boost of flavour. Although results are best when the pork is grilled on a barbecue, but a hot skillet will also do.

Preparation: 10 minutes, Cooking: 10 minutes

Recipe “au pif”:
4 pork chops with bone
1 stalk lemon grass (remove hard surrounding shell with your hands, and chop finely the inner softer stalk)
1 tbsp minced garlic
½ tbsp minced ginger
2 tbsp fish sauce
½ tsp raw cane sugar (or ¾ tsp regular sugar)
½ tsp red hot chili flakes
3 ½ - 4 tbsp vegetable oil (olive oil will also do)

In a large freezer bag, put in the pork chops two at time, and flatten them with a rolling pin or a meat tenderizing hammer. Repeat with the other two pork chops.

Transfer the pork chops to another large freezer bag and add in the lemongrass, garlic, ginger sugar, fish sauce and chili flakes. Drizzle in the oil over the meat and spices. Close the bag and shake well and give the pork a good massage with your hands so as to mix in the spices well. Lay bag on a large plate and refrigerate for 30 minutes or overnight.

Before grilling, take out the bag and leave at room temperature for about 20 minutes.

Remove marinated pork from the bag. Grill both sides on the barbecue for about 5-7 minutes each side until well done.

Slice the pork and serve with fresh lettuce and rice vermicelli. You can also wrap the pork slices in rice paper to make fresh spring rolls.

Serves 4.

Share and enjoy.

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