Few foodies would admit to using a microwave all that often. But busy weeknights call for some shortcuts, and microwaves can be a home cook’s best friend on those evenings when time is of the essence.
Cooking with a microwave need not be limited to frozen dinners. Take, for example, this recipe for “Italian Pork Chops” from “Incredibly Easy Italian” (Publications International, Ltd.). Easily prepared in less than 30 minutes, this meal combines homecooking with a shortcut that can make it easy to serve a delicious, hot meal on weeknights when parents or busy professionals simply don’t have much time to spend in the kitchen.
Italian Pork Chops
Ingredients: Serves 4
2 cups uncooked long-grain
4 large pork chops
1 teaspoon basil, crushed
1 26-ounce can Del Monte®
Spaghetti Sauce with
Mushrooms or Chunky Italian
Herb Spaghetti Sauce
1 green bell pepper, cut into thin
Salt for seasoning (if desired)
Black pepper for seasoning
Cook rice according to package directions.
Preheat broiler. Sprinkle meat with basil; season with salt and black pepper, if desired. Place meat on broiler pan. Broil 4 inches from heat, about 6 minutes on each side, or until no longer pink in center.
Combine sauce and green pepper in microwavable dish. Cover with plastic wrap; slit to vent. Microwave on high for 5 to 6 minutes, or until green pepper is tender-crisp and sauce is heated through. Add meat; cover with sauce. Microwave for 1 minute. Serve over hot rice.
Woodbridge ‘Robert Mondavi’ Merlot
Robert Mondavi — California
Looking at this dish from either side and you will walk away with a different wine pairing.
First, you look at the centerpiece of the dish — the pork chop. Generally speaking, pork calls for a white wine. A shiraz or chardonnay may be in order, adding crisp acidity to your meal. But, then we have to consider the spaghetti sauce.
Considering the already present acidity in tomato sauce, a shiraz or chardonnay would not be welcomed. With this Italian inspired dish, we can go with a red wine with lower acidity.
With this dish, we’re going with a California red from Robert Mondavi. This merlot provides layers of flavors — black cherry, blackberry and chocolate complete with a hint of oak. It’s an inexpensive bottle of wine and is sure to not compete against the overall taste of this quick and easy dish.
Of course, the best pairing is one of your own choosing. Let us know what you think by reaching out to us on Facebook at TheSpot518.com. Please share what pairings you ultimately went with.