Thursday, April 18, 2013

A No-Recipe Meal

One time I was reading one of my favorite blogs and in a post the blogger listed the meals she fed her family for the week.  The point of the post was sort of "I am not good at dinners, I never know what to make" but it was one of my favorite posts-because I got quite a few great ideas for those simple throw-together family meals-the kind we take for granted and 'think' we should be embarrassed by.  Grilled cheese and soup, muffin pizzas-that sort of thing.  I loved seeing what this other mother, halfway around the world, made for her family and not being overwhelmed by it.  It's SO nice and such a relief today to not be overwhelmed isn't it?

I think the most important thing about family meals is eating them together-or with as many children as it is possible to gather in between soccer and lacrosse and play practice-and I'm always hunting high and low to find meals that everyone will at least try.  Sometimes the simplest meals-the ones that I think to myself "this is so lame, it took no effort, Rachel or Paula or Ree or Giada would be horrified if they were spying in my window", the ones that are SO not blog worthy, the ones that don't even really need a recipe, are the ones that we moms might find the most helpful.  Especially during certain stages of our lives-with a baby in the house, or when life gets really busy-those times when following complicated recipes, or heck, any sort of recipe, is just about impossible.

So here is one of those no recipe, easy meals, and I have the intention (you probably know how my intentions sometimes pan out) of sharing more.

Easy Pork Chops

I used boneless, thin cut pork loin, about one and a half pounds, or eight cutlets.
For the breading I have used the following:

seasoned breadcrumbs
Panko crumbs
Shake n Bake
Ritz crackers smashed

For this meal, I only had a little of the first three so I mixed them all up together.
I cracked 4 eggs in a bowl and dipped each pork loin in the egg, and then followed that with a dip into the breading (I needed about 3 cups).  You can "shake" the pork loins in a bag but I like them heavily breaded so I really smoosh them into the crumbs on a plate.

I heat a large frying pan on high, with enough oil to cover just the surface of the pan.  Any oil will do.
Arrange pork in the pan when hot.
It took me about 4 minutes on each side to cook through.



We had plain egg noodles with butter (always a favorite with the younger crowd) and a side of canned pears.  



32 comments :

  1. I have to try this ~ I always bake them but frying us probably so much tastier. I can't believe you got that many chops for that price ~ wow! Do you ever put ice cubes in that little mesh? Works like a charm for teething and really isn't that messy.

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  2. I do this but with Turkey and a peppercorn sauce! Yum! I am going to try it with pork now too.

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  3. I love this post. (and your blog). I actually just wrote about the same thing on my blog. I marinated chicken all day in Greek Salad dressing and grilled on my george foreman, boiled some brown rice, and had canned green beans. My 4 kids devoured it. And I was initially embarrassed that I was not making something more elaborate. I find that I over analyze and make things too complicated when I should just make easy things that kids will eat and not worry about it. Thanks again.
    Rachel
    www.winterpartyofsix.blogspot.com

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  4. Nothing worse than slaving away and everyone turning their noses up at it! A favorite in our house is roasted chicken (either store bought or home made), fruit and some cheese. This is especially in the summer when it's too hot to cook. My daughter ate chicken, cubes of cheddar cheese and strawberries for lunch and dinner nearly all summer. Going to try the pork chops this week...yum!

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  5. These work great in the oven, too. 425 for 15 min on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

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  6. Love this! I think we all can use the reminder to keep it simple. Why do we spend so much time of our private lives in our homes fretting about being "fancy" or creative enough? or is that just me?

    Thanks for this.

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  7. My mom use to make this all the time for us! I love it. Meatloaf is my go to easy meal. My husband loves it and requests it at least once a week.

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  8. Those look great! I stink at pork chops - probably because I over cook them. I would fry them then put them in the oven to bake. My mother-in-law pounds them thin, breads them and fries them - keeps them warm in the oven and they are fork tender! Some day I will learn to make them correctly.

    But I agree - dinner time is about being together! It is the one thing I have done right as a parent - tried to preserve that as much as possible.

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  9. I LOVE shake and bake! Meals don't need to be grandiose productions. My favorites tend to be the basics anyway!

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  10. Janey has the prettiest smile and she always smiles with her eyes, I love that! The pork chops look great btw and we always try to keep things simple, we both work and are gone 11 hrs a day so there is no time to be fancy here...lol

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  11. What an easy meal. I love Janey's dimples.

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  12. Janey's face...I love it! When I scrolled down, I just smiled, she is so dang cute! I made a throw together dinner last night. Browned thin chicken cutlets, added 2 cups water to the skillet, 1 cup rice and 1 can of black beans and some adobo seasonings. Let it simmer for 30 minutes...it was delicious with salsa and a mexican tossed salad on the side. Thanks for the port chop recipe! I will try it!! Go give Janey a little squeeze! She is sooo dear!

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  13. This sounds like it would be a big hit at our house! One question though, Do you make different meals for you (if you are still eating mainly vegetarian)? I eat very little meat and always struggle with do I make multiple meals??? One meal for little picky eaters, one for meat potato daddy and a teenager and then one for me???!!! Makes me tired just typing it!

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    1. Hi Lori-I have yet to get back to my mostly-vegetarian way of eating-I stopped when I was pregnant with Janey. I will probably start up again when I am finished nursing her. Then I DO make a separate meal for me-or just a salad, but it is ALWAYS simple...or just an extension of the meal we are having.

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  14. I just made this meal a few nights ago and was so excited because it is SO easy and SO good. At the time, I vowed to make more meals like it, but have very few in my repetoire. I am looking forward to your sharing your quick, easy, kid-friendly meals with us! Janey is so darn cute, she makes me want to have another baby! But my youngest is five and I am 44 (sound familiar?), so it is unlikely to happen...

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    1. OMG - I just noticed that I commented using my husband's account and he has that awful avatar! I am so embarrassed! So sorry! He thinks he's funny.

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  15. thanks for the recipe! just wondering- I saw for your sandwich buns recipe you use them for sloppy joes- do you have a recipe or just use a seasoning packet? what are your thoughts on msg? thanks! :)

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    1. Hi Jody-I use a really easy recipe-I will share soon!

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  16. oh my gosh!! I could eat up Janey!!!!! She's so stinkin' cute!! Love the recipe,...may have to venture to my butcher this afternoon in yucky weather and grab some chops!!!

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  17. I'm always in need of these! Usually, I'll plan way too complicated meals, because they look so darn good, and then I'll never make them - either from lack of desire or energy. This looks yummy and doable. Thank you! (:

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  18. I think it is not the food but the company and conversation that is important. They sound so good I will have to give them a try.
    Cathy

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  19. Those thin 8 pork chops feed your whole family? How many do the boys eat? With my oldest daughter out of the house, we only have a family of four but the boys eat more and more and I don't know how to get them to be satisfied with less.

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    1. Christina-this made me laugh-I get it-they can eat you out of house and home. Isaac, our oldest, is away at college or it wouldn't have...and the pork chops are bigger (or thicker!) than they look.

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  20. We eat like this all the time. Nothing fancy, but it's homemade and the kids like it. I think the blog world and pinterest are create a delusional impression that everyone is creating elaborate, new creative meals all the time. My kids learned about having meat/dairy/fruit/vegetable/grain groups in meals, so they always check for that. It's kind of cute. I'd have to throw in a side of baby carrots from the fridge to round out the meal. : ) Thanks for sharing the simplicity of feeding a big family!

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  21. Looks delicious, my family would eat it...whatever is simplests gets in the tummies without complaints, as long as it's healthy, why should I stress? I can go fancy when company comes. your little ones eyes just twinkle, what a sweetie!

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  22. Thank you for this post. I made these tonight, along with mac-n-cheese, green beans and biscuits. My kids loved it, and it was so easy, quick and tasty!

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  23. love this! Please keep them coming :) It was the inspiration for my quick dinner tonight! We eat out WAY too much these simple meals help keep us in!

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  24. I make the same thing, but bake them in the oven on a metal cooling rack. It helps all of the sides get crispy (like frying them), but no need to stand over them to "babysit" like frying! :)

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  25. Made these last night and they were excellent! Thanks for the no-recipe recipe. :)

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  26. Love it. We had grilled cheese, Ore Ida french fries, and canned peaches for dinner last night. It was the best I could do home alone with 3 little boys. The hubby is heavy into his PhD writing and was on campus. Here is how I make pork schnitzel. Very similar to your recipe. http://www.homeecathome.com/2/post/2012/10/pork-schnitzel.html

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