As we all know, today is Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day. What you may not know is that Dr. King was a true fan of good old fashioned authentic southern food. Born in Alabama in 1929, Dr. King was raised eating the African-American food of the south, commonly called Soul Food and his favorite food was fried pig's ears sandwiches. Usually I would encourage you to make this dish in honor of him and his accomplishments, but I doubt any of us will be frying up pig's ears today. Instead, I suggest we make another of his soul food fave, smothered pork chops. For the recipe,
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1 1/2 cups rich beef broth
Pinch Sage leaves, crumbled
6 thick loin pork chops
1 cup flour for dredging
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 cup lard
3 large onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup celery, minced
- In a small saucepan melt butter over medium-high heat, stir in the 2 tablespoons flour, and cook, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, until lightly browned.
- Stir in broth and sage, mix well, remove from heat, and set aside. This mixture will be the sauce.
- Add salt and pepper to the 1 cup flour; dredge chops in the mixture.
- In a large, heavy skillet heat 1/4 cup of the lard over medium- high heat. Add chops and cook until they are browned.
- Move browned chops to a large, oven casserole with a cover.
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- Melt the remaining lard in skillet over high heat.
- Add onions, garlic, and celery; lower heat to
medium, and cook, stirring frequently to avoid burning, until onions are golden (about 8 to 10 minutes).
- Remove vegetables with a slotted spoon and place over chops in the casserole.
- Pour off all lard from the skillet. Add reserved sauce, raise heat to high, bring to a boil, and cook for 1 minute, stirring vigorously and scraping the bottom of the skillet.
- Pour sauce over chops in casserole, cover, and bake for 30 minutes.
- Serve with mashed potatoes.