Saturday, December 11, 2010

Cotlete Porc Cu Bere

Romanian Pork Chops with Beer Sauce!

     This is one of the greatest pork chop recipes of them all!  The cooking method is superb!  Romanian cuisine offers many traditional tasty pork recipes.
     It seems like all traditional Romanian farms have a few pigs on the land.  Many Romanian farmers dress in their colorful traditional folk clothing and they turn the pig slaughtering day into a celebration day.  A freshly butchered pig can turn into a big event.  The farmer's children hang around, waiting to eat the delicacy yet to come. The first thing the farmer does is remove the pig liver and rest it on top of the pig.  The raw liver steams in the cold winter air as pieces of the warm fresh liver are sliced and eaten raw by the children first.
     This may be a bit much for western world people to handle, but this is an old Romanian tradition that dates back to an age where wild animals were hunted when tribal members were hungry.  Every predator animal, including man, goes for the liver first, when prey is killed.  The liver offers instant nutrition and it usually eaten raw.  The difference between mankind and animals is that the hungry children are fed first.
     Once the Romanian farmers pig is butchered, the pig roast begins.  Traditional pork roast dinners for special visiting guests are usually the reason for a pig slaughtering event.  If a local inn or restaurant has a group of special visitors, the pig roast event takes place there.  If the pig roast event takes place on a farm, some of the freshly slaughtered pork is sold to local markets and eateries as a source of income.  Pork is an old tradition in Romania!
     Cotlete Porc Cu Bere:
     Heat a saute pan over medium heat.
     Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of home made lard or vegetables oil.
     Add 2 thick pork chops that weigh 6 to 8 ounces apiece.
     Sear both sides of the pork chops, but only cook the pork chops till they become a rare temperature of 115 to 120 degrees.
     Place the pork chops in a baking pan and broil the pork chops under a medium flame.
     Flip the pork chops occasionally so they roast evenly.
     When the pork chops become fully cooked and they become a light brown color, remove them from the broiler and set them aside.
     Heat a saute pan over medium low heat.
     Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of home made lard or unsalted butter.
     Place 3/4 cup of very thin sliced onions in the pan.
     Use a spatula to form the sliced onions together, so they create a bed that is the same size as the pork chops.
     Place 1 peeled, seeded and sliced Granny Smith green apple on the onions.
     Sprinkle 2 cloves of chopped garlic over the apples.
     Place 1/2 cup of thin sliced onion on top of the apples.
     Place the pork chops on top of the onions and apples.
     Season the pork chops with sea salt and black pepper.
     Add 1/4 cup of water to the pan.
     Cover the pan tightly with a lid or foil.
     Reduce the temperature to low heat.
     Simmer the pork chops over the layered onions and apples.  Do not disturb or shake the pan!
     Cook for about 30 to 40 minutes, till the onions become caramelized to a brown color and the apples have completely dissolved.
     Romanian Beer Sauce recipe:
     Make a blond roux in a pan with equal amounts of flour and unsalted butter over medium heat while constantly stirring.  About 2 to 3 tablespoons of blonde roux will be plenty.
     When the roux becomes a blonde color, set the pan aside.
     Gently boil 1 1/2 cups of Romanian blond pils beer Czechoslovakian pilsner beer in a sauce pot over medium heat.
     Add just enough of the roux, while whisking, to thicken the beer to a very thin sauce consistency.
     Reduce the temperature to low heat.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of sugar.
     Add sea salt and white pepper.
     Add 1 tiny pinch of cayenne pepper.
     Add 2 pinches of marjoram.
     Simmer and reduce the sauce, till it becomes a medium thin sauce consistency.
     Add 3 to 4 pinches of finely chopped Italian parsley just before serving.
     Add 2 to 3 pinches of very thin sliced chives just before serving.
     When the pork chops are done cooking, there will be just a little bit of caramelized pan juices in the saute pan.  Be sure that the pan jus lands on the plate!
     Use a large spatula to slide the apples, onions, pan juices and pork chops onto a plate together as one.  (The apple onion and pan juices must be served beneath the pork chops on the plate!)
     Generously spoon the beer sauce over the pork chops.
     Serve with a vegetable of your choice and garnish with a parsley sprig.
     Serve with a starch of your choice on the side.
     This Romanian pork chop recipe is the best of the best!  The pork chops become very tender using this Romanian cooking method.  The onions and apple slices are caramelized brown and the pan juices have such a very nice flavor.  The apples melt into a dark jus while slow simmering.
     The beer sauce is well balanced and it gives the pork chops a wonderful old world flavor.  This Romanian pork chop recipe is a must try!  Delicious!  ...  Shawna

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