Thursday, June 27, 2013

Winner, Winner! Pork Chop Dinner!

WOW! It's been a while since my last post, hasn't it? We were actually in Moline, IL last week replacing the roof on a church there. 
It was hard work and it was HOT, but it makes you feel good to help people out, especially when they are so appreciative as this bunch was. Talk about a long ride! It took our group 18 hours to get there, but the scenery wasn't all that bad, see?
We had a great time, but, boy have I been tired! I think I am finally getting back into the zone, though.

By the way, if you're ever in the Quad Cities Area, you HAVE TO eat at Miss Mamie's! That place was wonderful! We found out about it by searching for restaurants on Trip Advisor. Miss Mamie's had great reviews from others, so we went there and almost everyone in our 11 person party ordered something different and it was all amazing! (You can read my review on Yelp here.) I had the coconut shrimp (that looked more like prawns!) and the spinach salad. The homemade poppy seed dressing on the spinach salad was absolutely mind blowing! The waitress, who was very patient with all of us Southerners :), was not budging on the girl! If you're ever in the area, trust me, you won't be disappointed!

On the way home, we stopped in Metropolis, IL for gas. (We ate at The Grill just off Ferry Street. The food there was also delicious, so if you like Mexican/American, give them a shot, too.) If you are scratching your heads thinking, "Metropolis? Isn't that where Clark Kent a.k.a.Superman lives?"  You bet it is! This little town is the official Home of Superman. On Superman Square, there is a huge bronze statue of your truly, but just in case you don't believe me, here's proof:
That's us posing with the big guy! The town really is cool and there's even a museum if you have time to look around (we didn't.) Anyway, it was a neat photo op. (FYI: Dippin' Dots is directly across the street, just sayin'!)

Now, on with the pork chop dinner! So, since we've been gone, we've eaten a lot of food out, so I wanted to fix a good meal at home this evening, but I didn't know what I wanted. I found some pork chops in the freezer and sat them out to thaw. At lunch, I Googled pork chop recipes and I found this simple recipe for Cornmeal Crusted Pork Chops at Elly Says Opa!

Y'all, This is one of the best pork chop recipes I've had in a long time! Allow me to share it with you. You will need:
4 boneless pork chops (about 3/4" thick)
1 c. cornmeal
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 eggs
1/8 c. canola oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all the dry ingredients together in a shallow bowl. In another bowl, beat the eggs.
Season your pork chops with a little salt and pepper, dredge through the egg, then coat in the cornmeal mixture. (I prefer to repeat this process for a thicker batter. You don't have to, but it does produce a thicker crust.)

Heat the oil in a frying pan, then add the chops. Brown on each side for about 2 minutes, then transfer the chops to an oven-safe baking dish. 

Cover the dish with foil, then bake for 10-15 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches at least 145 degrees. 
(I know. Some of you are cringing at the thought of this, but the USDA lowered the standard from 160 degrees a few years back. Reference.)
Serve these babies up with some mashed potatoes and baked beans and it really doesn't get much better than this!