Keep those empty spice jars when you use the last teaspoon. Every now and then you will come upon a recipe for a spice/herb mixture or a dry rub. Mix it up and fill your empty jar. Just label it and store it away.
I have a jar of a spice marinade from an old Julia Child cookbook, “The Way to Cook.” It is for pork, pates, sausages, goose and duck. Well, I don’t know about you, but I don’t cook goose or duck and don’t mix my own sausage, although I might someday. Therefore, I can only say that the spice mixture is indeed good for pork. I have rubbed it on roasts and chops with good results. If you have an old coffee grinder you can use it to grind up anything whole. Clean the grinder with dry rice and it’s ready for next time.
I used the dry marinade last night on pork chops and to flavor a quick sauce. First, I seasoned the two chops with a little salt and black pepper then sprinkled a little of the spice mix on both sides. Next, I dredged them in flour and shook off the excess.
Then I sauteed the chops in a little olive oil in a skillet. After a two or three minutes on each side, the chops and the skillet went into a preheated 375 degree oven for ten minutes while I got the rest of the dinner under way. We had potato salad already fixed, and I had made Greek salad dressing and washed lettuce earlier in the day. All I had to do was peel and slice cucumber, chop some green bell peppers, slice up some roasted red pepper, halve some Kalamata olives and toss it all together with tomato wedges and feta cheese for garnishing.
When I removed the skillet from the oven, I sprinkled 1/4 teaspoon of the spice mixture in the skillet and then deglazed the pan with 1/4 cup white wine. I added 1/4 cup chicken broth and cooked that for a few minutes to thicken it slightly and then added about one tablespoon of heavy cream with a little salt. I served this over the chops and it was very good. Try it, but get the marinade ready in advance.
JULIA CHILD’S DRY PORK MARINADE AND SEASONING MIX
(Makes about 1 1/4 c., so reduce amounts if necessary to fit your container.)
2 T. each ground: imported bay leaf, clove, mace, nutmeg, paprika, and thyme
1 T. each ground: allspice, cinnamon, and savory
5 T. white peppercorns, ground
Blend it all together and store in a screw-top jar.
Use up to 1/2 t. per pound of meat
By the way, when putting your skillet in the oven to finish cooking, be sure you have an ovenproof handle. Also, be sure not to grab the handle once it is removed from the oven. It’s so easy (I know – I’ve done it!) to just grab the handle to stir up a sauce, forgetting that it is probably 350 degrees and will leave quite a burn after only 1 second. Keep a hot pad over the handle or find one of those grips that fit over the handle. Amazon.com