I've been organizing. Left, right, center, drawers, boxes, cupboards - nothing is safe. My super-duper-could-eat-your-arm shredder has munched its way through years of hoarded paper. Yeah - the truth comes out. I have this much to organize because I'm nuts. I have bags of papers that I need to shred, because I'm paranoid about throwing anything with my name, address or any personal information whatsoever into the trash. At my last job, I would occasionally bring in one of these bags and feed it to the industrial shredders that we had living here and there around the office.
At any rate, one side benefit to all of this sorting and stacking is that all of my bills were in one place and easy to find. The other day, I sat down and wrote out the checks and got everything ready to mail. (I do pay things online, but I'm old school. I prefer sending checks.) Then I put stamps on them and whisked them off to the post box, all proud of myself 'cause everything was going out early.
And then two days later, they all came back with a stamp about needing more postage. WTF?? I *just* bought a whole flippin' roll of stamps. Turns out (well, duh!) that time's going faster than I thought, and I'm completely out of the loop. 'Just bought them' is actually more like five months ago, and it turns out that the price of postage went up again. *sigh* So, I bought a bunch of two cent stamps and tried again. (Hmm. Whatever happened to the cent symbol? You know, that little 'c' with the line through it? Well. Anyway.) So maybe I need to rethink the whole old-school sending checks thing. I must ponder. (Anyone else have Two Nu stuck in their head? Ponderous, man, ponderous.)
Since I'm sure my continued whining about the creepy-crawlies in my house has perked up appetites across the land, I thought I'd share the recipe for the really tasty pork chops I fixed on Sunday.
Somewhere, my mom has something very similar written down, and I thought I did too, but then I couldn't find it and they weren't home to ask so I just did what I could remember. It turned out quite tasty. (FYI - ~ means an approximation, since I didn't measure anything.)
1/2 med onion, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
~ 1/4 - 1/2 stick of butter (or use less and add a bit of olive oil - I couldn't reach my olive oil and the step stool was upstairs)
4 thin boneless pork chops, trimmed of fat (you can use thick - it just takes longer)
~ 1/4 cup flour
~ 2 teaspoons parmessian cheese (Yup, the pulverized s'getti cheese in a can.)
~ 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
~ 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
~ 4 cups of water
1 chicken buillion cube
1 beef buillion cube (I couldn't remember which one to use so I split the difference.)
~ 2 tablespoons flour
~ 1/2 cup water
Trim and rinse the pork chops. In a sealable bag, combine flour, cheese, onion powder, garlic powder and shake well to mix.
Add butter, onion and garlic to a med/large skillet over medium heat. While it cooks, shake excess water from pork chops and drop them, one at a time, into bag with flour mixture. Shake to coat. Remove chops from bag and shake off excess coating.
Before onions are completely cooked, push them to the side of the skillet and place chops in skillet, making sure each is flat in pan. (The timing is a bit delicate here - if you wait for the onions to cook, they burn while the chops brown.) Brown chops on each side, flipping once.
While chops are browning, drop bullion cubes in water and microwave for 3 or 4 minutes. Once chops are browned, pour water into skillet. Be careful! The first water to hit the pan is going to evaporate into HOT steam. Cover skillet. Let it come to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. (Watch it more carefully than I did or you too will spend some quality time cleaning the stove.)
Let it simmer for 45 minutes to an hour or so - if you lose track of time replanting something, it's no big deal. Check to make sure chops are completely cooked (after an hour, if they're thin, they will be.) Remove chops to serving dish. Mix flour and water together (I use a small plastic milk bottle, with a screw on lid and shake the crap outta it.) Increase heat until broth is boiling. While whisking constantly, add flour water in a thin stream. Continue whisking for at least a minute after the last of the flour has been added. Pour thickened gravy over chops, or into separate server.
I made mashed potatoes and corn on the cob with this, and a salad. It's yummy and you can do the whole thing on the stove without turning the oven on. For dessert, I feasted on the Rainier cherries that I found and pounced on at Sam's Club. Happy dining!