October, our tenth month, gets its name from the Latin word for eight, “octo”, because it originally was the eighth month in the Roman calendar. Americans have a penchant for assigning the term, “National _____________ Month” (you fill in the blank, apparently!
In the grocery business, October is known as National Apple Month, and it isn’t hard to figure out why. The multitude of colorful, delicious varieties of this extremely popular fruit which come ripe this month is almost overwhelming. October is also known as National Pork Month in this same industry! Pork and apples go together as Forrest Gump might say, “like peas and carrots!” There are literally hundreds of recipes incorporating these two delicious foods in the same pan and I have chosen one to share with you.
However, apples and pork are by no means the only monthly, weekly or even daily notable designations during the month of October. Without going into a detailed list, I found over 50 such instances of “awareness” before I quit counting! Considering there are only 31 days in the month, that makes for a lot of shared days.
This is a rather simple recipe but those are often the best kind. I know when I’m trying out a recipe that I’ve never cooked before I’m immediately turned off if it has multiple steps requiring that I dirty multiple pans. Those recipes are the ones I usually file under “not today”.
CINNAMON – APPLE PORK CHOPS
|2 TBS BUTTER (divided)||4 BONELESS PORK LOIN CHOPS|
|3 TBS BROWN SUGAR||1 TSP GROUND CINNAMON|
|½ TSP GROUND NUTMEG||¼ TSP SALT|
|4 THINLY SLICED TART APPLES (Granny Smith)||2 TBS CHOPPED PECANS|
In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Add the pork chops and cook for 4 to 5 minutes per side or until meat thermometer reads 145°F. Meanwhile in a small bowl, mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
Remove the pork chops to a place where you can keep them warm. Add the pecans, apples, brown sugar mixture and the remaining 1 tbs of butter to the pan. Cook and stir continuously until the apples are tender. Spoon the apple mixture over the pork chops & serve. (NOTE: bone-in pork chops can be used, but they take a little longer to reach 145°F).