Pork Sausage & Broccoli in Hard-Cider Sauce

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The hard-cider sauce caught my eye in this dish– it was FABULOUS!! I had received broccoli in my CSA share the day I found this recipe, so I made it right away. This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Jack Riebel. I used a giant Honey Crisp apple, rustic bread, and fresh Italian pork sausages. Hot sausages would be great too.

  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo, stemmed and seeded
  • 2 Granny Smith or Honey Crisp apples, halved and cored, plus 1/2 apple cut into matchsticks, for garnish (optional)
  • 2 ounces rye or rustic bread, crusts removed and bread torn into bite-size pieces (1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup hard cider
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • Four 4-ounce smoked pork sausages, sweet or hot Italian pork sausages, or cheddar wursts
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound (or more) broccoli, cut into 1-inch florets
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds
  1. Preheat the oven to 325°. Bake the cored and halved apples cut side down on a rimmed baking sheet for 30 minutes, until tender. Let cool. Scoop the apple pulp into a food processor and discard the skins. Stem, seed and chop the chipotle; add it to the food processor and puree. Add additional adobo sauce to taste.
  2. Meanwhile, spread the bread in a pie plate or baking sheet and bake the pieces for about 10 minutes, until golden.
  3. In a saucepan, boil the hard cider with the vinegar, sugar and apple puree. Simmer, stirring, until reduced to 3/4 cup, 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and season with salt.
  4. Light a grill or broiler. Cook the sausages, turning, until lightly charred on both sides and cooked through, 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate and tent with foil.
  5. In a skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the broccoli and season with salt. Cover and cook until browned, 2 minutes. Stir in the mustard, caraway, cider sauce and 1/2 cup of water and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, season with salt. Serve the sausages with the broccoli and sauce, garnishing with the bread crumbs and apple matchsticks, if desired.

Pork Chops with Apples and Cider

NY Times Valentines Day Pork Chops

I made this as a belated weekend-night Valentine’s Day dinner. I went to several stores to shop for the potato starch used to thicken the sauce- probably unnecessary- because so little is used, cornstarch would have sufficed. The spiced salt is quite salty, I didn’t have to add any extra to the sauce. I also used thicker pork chops, so the cooking time was much longer than 4 minutes per side. I cooked them to an internal temperature of 145 degrees. The sautéed apples were fabulous. This recipe is from The New York Times, contributed by David Tanis.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

FOR THE SPICED SALT

  • 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 3 cloves
  • 4 allspice berries
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped sage
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt

FOR THE PORK AND SAUCE

  • 6 boneless pork chops, 4 ounces each, about 1/2-inch thick
  • 2 large apples
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • All-purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1/2 cup hard cider, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 and 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons potato starch dissolved in 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 3 tablespoons crème fraîche
  • 1 tablespoon Calvados, apple brandy or Cognac, optional
  • 2 tablespoons finely cut chives
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

1.
Make the spice salt: Put peppercorns, cloves, allspice and sage in a spice mill or mortar and grind to a powder. Remove to a bowl and stir in salt. Season pork chops on both sides with salt mixture. (There will be some salt mixture remaining; use it to season the sauce, Step 4.) Cover and leave chops at room temperature to absorb seasonings for at least 30 minutes.
2.
Peel, quarter and core apples, then cut each apple into 12 wedges. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a wide skillet and raise heat to medium-high. Add apple wedges in one layer and brown gently on one side, about 2 minutes. Brown on the other side and cook for 2 minutes more, or until apples are cooked through but still firm. Remove apples from pan and keep warm.
3.
Add 1 tablespoon butter to pan and swirl to melt. Dust pork chops with flour, and place in pan and brown gently for about 4 minutes per side. Adjust heat if necessary to keep pork from cooking too quickly. Remove chops and keep warm on a platter in a low oven. Discard remaining butter.
4.
Add ½ cup cider to pan, raise heat to high and cook down to a syrup. Add mustard and chicken broth, and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Add potato starch and stir with a wire whisk as the sauce thickens. Stir in crème fraîche. Season to taste with remaining spiced salt. Add 2 tablespoons cider and the Calvados, if using. Cook for 1 minute more.
5.
Spoon sauce over the chops, then spoon the apples around the platter. Sprinkle with chives and parsley.

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