The thing I’ve noticed about eating local in the wintertime is that it favors simple dishes and simple preparation techniques. Perhaps this is part of the sacred quiet of winter–a reminder for us to turn inward, reflect on our days together, and await the new and exciting things that spring will surely provide. It’s a reminder, too, of the ways in which we are connected to each other as a community and dependent on the actions and choices of those around us.
Here’s a simple dish I pulled together this evening:
– cornmeal (nonlocal #1)
– pork chops (from my local butcher, sourced locally)
– salt and oil (freebies)
1. Dry the pork chops in paper towels. Sprinkle with salt, then dredge in cornmeal.
2. Brown lightly in a bit of olive oil in a skillet. Put a lid on the skillet for about 3 minutes.
3. Flip the chops to brown on the other side. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low for 5-7 minutes, depending on the size of the chops (ours were on the smallish side). Drain lightly on paper towels before serving.
The pork chops were surprisingly flavorful. I think that comes primarily from the fact that they were fresh and well-raised, but the cornmeal did add a delicately sweet crust reminiscent of, well, cornbread. One thing that would have really rounded out this meal would be some nice steamed spinach or other greens.
Have you made a local winter meal yet? Won’t you share what you’ve been up to? Or read here to see how you can step up to the Dark Days Challenge. I’d love to feel connected to you, sharing how wherever you may be we are together, living simply in the winter time. Do give it a try and let us know how it’s working for you!