Orange-Scented Pork and Tomato Stew

Summertime and I need  some one-pot meals I can make ahead so we can have leftovers and I’m not cooking every night.  Beef stew seems too much like a winter dish, but this yummy “light” stew with its delicate orange and mint flavors is perfect for this time of year.

  • 2 1/2 lbs boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch cubes (I use boneless pork sirloin chops)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 TBL olive oil or more if needed
  • 2 cups diced (1/4 inch) onions
  • 1 TBL finely minced garlic
  • 2 cups (drained and chopped) peeled Italian plum tomatoes, from about one 28-oz. can (I’ve used canned diced or chopped tomatoes)
  • I TBL dark-brown sugar  (or to taste)
  • Zest of 1 orange, removed in 1 long strip with a sharp paring knife  (I used OJ concentrate to taste)
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 4 carrots, halved lengthwise, then cut into 1-inch lengths (I probably used more carrots; I like to have as many carrots as I have pork.)
  • 4 TBL chopped fresh mint leaves (I’ve used dried mint if no fresh is available)
  • Noodles for serving (have used egg noodles and orchiette pasta)

1. Season pork generously with salt and pepper.

2. Brown the pork in the olive oil over medium-high heat, in batches if needed.  Set aside browned pork.

3. Reduce heat to low, adding more oil as needed, and cook the onions until wilted, about 10 minutes stirring occasionally.  Add garlic and cook about another minute.

4. Add tomatoes, sugar, orange zest (or OJ concentrate; I’ve used a couple of teaspoons; just taste and add until you feel it has enough.), chicken broth and white wine. Return pok to pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, for 1 hour, or until pork starts to get tender. Stir in carrots and 2 TBS of the mint; season with salt and pepper.  Cook, partially covered until the carrots and pork are tender, about 15 minutes longer. Remove and discard orange zest. Taste sauce and determine if more chicken broth, OJ concentrate, or tomato is needed. Orange should be a light taste in the background; not overwhelming. Sprinkle with remaining 2 TBL of mint and serve over noodles.

Like most stews, I think this tastes even better if you make it a day or two ahead and let all the flavors meld. We had this dish in the photo the second time around as leftovers. The orchiette pasta was a little too al dente so we decided to throw the pasta in with the stew and let it cook another 3 or 4 minutes.  It was really good because the pasta pulled in all the flavors of the sauce.

Published in: on July 13, 2012 at 8:05 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Middle Eastern Chicken with Tomato Feta Relish

This is my best chicken recipe, so even though it doesn’t look as “pretty” as it normally does, I had to post this just so I can get the recipe online.

2 servings

  • 2  boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1/2 – 3/4 lbs)
  • 4 tsp. red wine viengar
  • 1-1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp ground red pepper
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • 3  Tbsp. chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil (divided use)

Flatten each breast to a uniform thickness, about 1/4 inch.

Mix vinegar, mustard, and seasonings in a small dish. Combine tomato, green onions, mint, feta, 1-1/2 tsp of the oil and 1-1/2 tsp of the vinegar mixture in a small bowl.

Brush both sides of chicken with remaining vinegar mixture. Place a large skillet over high heat. When it is hot, add remaining 1-1/2 tsp. oil. Heat 30 seconds. Add chicken and cook, turning once until they are cooked through, about 3 minutes. Transfer chicken to warmed dinner plates.

Add tomato mixture to skillet. Cook and stir about 20 seconds and spoon over chicken breasts and serve. (and if you cook the tomato mixture longer, your feta will get mushy as in photo above. Ideally you want it warm, but not too mushy.)

That’s it.  Fast and so yummy.  I usually serve it with couscous or mushroom orzo.

Because of the star status of this meal, the papparazzi was hot on its trail.

Paparazzi’s Photo 

This is from a different occasion. No cherry tomatoes here, but sliced tomato instead. Also the feta cheese was not as creamy this time, but whatever the variation, it still tastes great.

Screen shot 2013-08-21 at 3.41.13 PM

Published in: on February 23, 2011 at 8:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Mango Salsa on Pork Steaks

Mango salsa is my favorite summertime condiment to pork or chicken. This summer meal included a green bean salad with pine nuts, basil and vinegar/oil dressing. Also had some pre-cooked 6-grain rice which I fried up quickly with green pepper and mushrooms.

But the mango salsa on the grilled pork steak is the best. Lots of variations possible. This time I used chopped mango, cucumber, red onion, fresh mint, garlic and lime juice. Let it meld a bit, adjust for taste, and chill. I usually put in chopped red pepper (preferably nice & sweet). A bit of jalapeno pepper is good for a little “bite” and cilantro instead of, or in addition to mint is also fine. Some recipes suggest a touch of brown sugar or maple syrup in case you like more sweetness, or your mango isn’t sweet enough. Served on top of pork steaks or chicken fillets, mmm – yummy!

Published in: on August 23, 2010 at 9:59 am  Comments (2)  
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