We had pork chops tonight, nothing fancy, just chops quickly fried in a skillet. As side dishes, we had roasted new potatoes with garlic chips, steamed broccoli with Parmesan cheese, and tossed salad with red grapes and vinaigrette.
For the potatoes, I washed a double handful of medium-size new potatoes and cut them in quarters. I dried them well and tossed them with a tablespoon of olive oil and some salt and black pepper. Then I peeled and thickly sliced four garlic cloves and tossed them into the potatoes. I put it all in a shallow baking dish and into a 375 degree oven. It took about 35 -40 minutes for them to roast. The garlic slices were nicely browned and crunchy. If my rosemary hadn’t frozen this winter, I would have added some to the dish.
The vinaigrette was just an ordinary oil, vinegar, little dijon, salt and pepper mixture. The addition of the grapes gave a sweetness to the tangy dressing. Very good.
I must tell about my misuse of rosemary a few years ago. We were preparing for our annual Christmas Eve feast with family and friends, a go-all-out dinner with either rib roast or beef tenderloin every year. Certain constant items include baked stuffed potatoes, broccoli-cauliflower salad, and the piece de resistance, Buche de Noel. I usually prepare the Buche de Noel the day before and at that time, I had some extra time and made meringue “mushrooms” to garnish the platter when presenting the Buche after dinner. I also sprinkled some cranberries around the platter and, to make it even prettier, I decided to add a few sprigs of fresh rosemary. Big mistake. It wouldn’t have been so bad if I had put the rosemary on the platter immediately before serving dessert, but I put it on the platter the night before and stored it in the spare refrigerator.
By the time dessert was served, the pungent fragrance of rosemary had permeated the icing and cake. Now, I like rosemary, but not in chocolate icing, and definitely not in sponge cake. We all had a good laugh and I learned a lesson about garnishing.