Except for one little wedding detail I left out…
A closeup of the bridesmaid flowers! The picture I posted yesterday really didn’t do them much justice, huh? I’ll admit, I’m not real sure what the little bitty white flowers are, but they really give it a put together look. I was originally just going to go with half a dozen big calla lilies for the bridesmaids, but then I thought it might look a little weird, they’re all a little on the small and vertically challenged side (Love you guys!! haha) so maybe carrying huge flowers might just over power them and the dresses, and I’d rather my wonderful friends be the focus of the pictures and not the flowers. I’m pleasantly surprised how easy the flowers were to pick out and arrange. I basically started with the calla lilies and walked up and down the white section of the floral wall picking out flowers and comparing them with the lilies, putting them back, and repeating until I found what fit together best. Yet another reason silk is so much better than real. I think I might even hit hit them with essential oil to make them smell better. I was thinking of setting up our spare bedroom with a couple oil burners and letting the flowers sit in there for a couple hours the day before the wedding and give them a more floral scent…no one will be the wiser! haha.

Anyway, I said back to cooking, and I meant it…for the most part. Yesterday I made stuffed pork chops, again just throwing ingredients together and hoping for the best..
First, I took just general thin sliced pork chops. Notice my technique with the butt of the knife? I realized yesterday we are desperately in need of a meat mallet…will be going on the registry. We’ve been living there with the same kitchen appliances for a year and this has been the first time I ever needed one…go figure! haha Anyway. I made the pork chop slices as thin as possible to aim for a quicker cooking time and much easier handling, you’ll see why here in a minute. Pork is a wonderful thing to cook with. It’s not as tough as beef and it’s not as touchy as chicken, if that makes any sense at all. Also, I make chicken all the time because I love it, but Justin’s pretty sick of it. haha. The second step (or you can make it first, whatever) is the stuffing. I don’t know about you, but I adore home made stuffing, but who has the time for it? Seriously? I get it on Thanksgiving, that’s about it. So I make instant. ha. I used Stouffers cornbread stuffing for this recipe because it’s my favorite, but I’m sure you can use just about anything and it will taste good. Or you can just stuff them with whatever is handle. Tomatoes? Sure. Olives? Celery and onion? The possibilities are pretty much endless when it comes to stuffing, you really don’t have to use bread or bread products. I chopped up a few celery sticks and a couple small onions to the stuffing mix just to give it a little more flavor, but if you don’t like the taste of onion or whatever no need to do it. I should have been born in Thailand or something, I love seasoning and intense flavor almost to the point of overpowering…poor Justin 😉 But I behave myself when I’m cooking for others. I’m a terrible baker due to my experimenting, but I’m an excellent cook. Anyway. Make the stuffing, let it cool off, add the celery and onion, onto the next step… This part is kinda gross. in order to keep everything together you have to get in there and really kneed the stuffing into a ball and flatten it onto the pork. Put as much in as you like. Justin and I like stuffing so I put in as much as possible, but some might be more into the pork flavor than stuffing. Up to you! The next step is to literally wrap the stuffing in pork. This is where very, very, very thin meat is very helpful, the meat needs to be flexible. If all goes according to plan and the meat is thin enough it should pretty much just stick together. If you’re having trouble keeping it together try eliminating some of the stuffing from the inside. I used Giant Eagle brand pork, but I don’t think it really matters. I don’t have any expierience with any other, so there’s my disclaimer if, say, Wal Mart pork doesn’t do what you tell it to. 🙂
Onto the cooking!
I used a skillet for these, which in hindsight may not have been such a great idea. They cooked a little unevenly so I kept having to hold the rolled pork on its side so it would cook, haha. Next time I make these I might try baking or broiling, just so it will cook evenly. I recently fell in love with the broiling method of cooking, especially for crispy potatoes. Anyway, back to pork: a nice little trick to keep the pork together is to initially land the pork on the side where everything comes together, it kind of cooks together and stays put very well. I sprinkled some Parmesan cheese on these bad boys because I didn’t want to go too crazy, but I’ll probably add a crunchy breading with parm, some spices, and mozzarella cheese next time I make them, the outside was lacking something. I tend to overdo things initially though, so I thought I might ease Justin into these. When these little beauties are done, they should have a nice gold/brown color. Remember, pink and pork do not go well together! There will be no medium rare pigs running around my kitchen. haha.
Overall I think they turned out rather well for a random brainstorming during a lazy Sunday afternoon. Justin ate them right up, and he’s by biggest priority. I’ll admit, he’s not exactly the pickiest eater I’ve ever met, I like to affectionately refer to him as my breathing vacuum cleaner when it comes to food. 🙂 He’s also the perfect match for my eccentric cooking skills. He’ll let me know if I crossed the line, and if I crossed the line for Justin then I know I’m in bad, bad, very bad territory. haha. I’m glad he can deal with my cooking though, sometimes I hit something perfect, other times I go a little overboard, but I can usually pull together a pretty kickass meal. I think my next conquest is going to be wedding soup. It’s still soup season, although I do with it would warm up.
Anyway, that’s it for now. Tomorrow I’ll be complaining again about the price of textbooks, as spring semester 2008 is right around the corner!