Thursday, January 26, 2012

Apple Pie Pork Chops

Yesterday was a long day.  It started with me waking up at 1am and unable to go back to sleep.  It ended with us finally getting in bed at 10:00pm only to get a phone call that the cows were out.  My husband took off to the farm (only a mile down the road) and I went and woke some sleepy kids and jumped in the van and went to try and help.  Thankfully, they were able to round the cows up quickly and we were back to bed by 11pm.  Still, I was exhausted going into today.
All that to say that although I simply love to cook, there are days when I want things done as simply as possible. Enter tonight's tweak (and experiment) on dinner.  I was planning on doing parmesan sage pork chops tonight, but the later it got in the day, the more I realized I wanted to do something easier.  The pork chops were already thawed, so on my way out the door to take my daughter to ballet, I threw this together.  It's four ingredients and I only dirtied two dishes.  Yup, that is simple and that is what I needed today!  Thankfully I had my camera there in the kitchen so I grabbed a few quick photos.  Here it is!
Apple Pie Pork Chops
1.  Grab all your ingredients
          1 apple (I used red delicious because that is what was on hand!)
          4 boneless thin sliced pork chops
          Sparkling apple cider
          Apple pie spice (If you don't happen to have this don't fret.  All it is is cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.)

2.  Put you pork chops in the bottom of your crockpot in a single layer (if doing more than four they could be layered, just be sure to add liberal spice to each layer).  Liberally pour on the apple pie spice.  I'm not one for measuring, so I can't tell you how much exactly to use.  Just coat those babies well!

3.  Pour in the sparkling apple cider.  Again, no measurements, I just poured it over the pork chops until they were almost covered.

4.  Slice up your apple in fairly thin slices and layer over top of the pork chops.

5.  Close the lid and walk away!  I cooked these on high for 3 hours.  You could do low for 5-6 hours as well.  Whatever works better for you.

When I walked back in the house not only was our main dish ready, the entire house smelled amazing!  I am all about utilizing several senses to enjoy food.  The look and smell of the food is about as important as the taste.  Well, sometimes.  I have made things that smell amazing and taste amazing, but they have been affectionately called "goo" or "glop" or some other endearing name.  It is what it is!

The pork chops were absolutely delicious!  My family just gobbled them up.  They were super tender.  No knife needed!  I might add a dash of ground ginger next time.  I don't know yet.  The apples had a fabulous light sweetness to them as well.  We ended up having these pork chops, homemade applesauce, tomato cucumber salad and left over Caramel Apple Sticky Buns (from our prayer meeting the night before) for dessert.  It all went together so well and my family just loved them!  That always thrills my soul!

So there you have it.  A super simple recipe and next to no cleanup!  All I had to wash from the pork chops were the knife I used to slice up the apple and my crockpot.
*Side note on the cleaning of the crockpot ~ I am a big believer in crockpot liners.  They are just like oven bags, but made to fit a slow cooker.  They are amazing little things.  Instead of having to scrub out your crockpot after dinner, you simply lift out the bag, toss it, and wipe out your crockpot.  So very simple!  The liners can be pricey, but I find that I can get coupons for them all the time.  I just picked some up last week at Giant Eagle and they had rebate for them so I ended up getting them for free!  WooHoo!  They make crockpot cooking even easier on tired mamas!

Well, since my dishes are done and the kiddos are in bed, I am off to bed with my sweet hubby!  Good night, y'all!

1 comment:

  1. Everythime I have used a crockpot liner it has somehow leaked and burned to the crock. At first I thought I wwas somehow cutting or piercing the liner but cannot see any breaks. I finally gave up! I have found that copper scrubbers do a marveous job of cleaning up the crock and it is simple if I fill the crock with water as soon as I remove the food. I guess you cannot teach an old lady new tricks!