Day Seventy-Eight: Pork Chops with Bacon-Braised Cabbage

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December 29, 2012 by chicagogrilling365

014Well, if you follow this crazy thing, you’re probably assuming I’m drunk. And while you wouldn’t be half wrong, that’s not the reason for the return to the late seventies.

I realized tonight that our count was off.

I’m terrible with math, so that’s why it took me several weeks to figure this out.

We skipped day seventy-eight. So let’s go back and do it together.

I love cabbage.

That didn’t happen easily.

While my great-grandmother (Mammy), was a great cook and an awesome lady, she made the mistake many Southern women do when cooking greens, or really most vegetables in general: cooking the hell out of them.

Growing up, cabbage was essentially a leafy thing slightly resembling a plant that tasted like water. And water.

I hated it.

Years later, I ate cabbage with ham hock and it was amazing.

009Cabbage and pork are supposed to be together.

I chopped a head of green cabbage and placed it in a stockpot with water, apple cider vinegar, (good-quality) chopped bacon, salt and pepper, and cooked them on low heat for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, I grilled two small pork chops.

The broth was delicious, even though I wasn’t keeping it. The bacon had lent itself completely to the cabbage.

The cabbage tasted smoky, salty, and sweet.

And it still had a little snap.

Because it hadn’t been cooked on high heat, all the flavor entered the cabbage and didn’t leave it, which would have happened if the broth had been boiled on high.

I served the dish with a little stone-ground mustard because I love that stuff.

I ate everything.

I can happily say that it was probably my favorite thing that I’ve cooked on this project thing yet.

And it was super simple.

We’re supposed to eat pigs.

I hope you read that, Megan.

-K&J

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