Chop chop, lame duck and drawing disaster!

We finally sampled some of our newly acquired pork this week in the shape of Pan-To-Oven Pork Chops with Garlic. (Courtesy Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall) Now when I say garlic, this is serious, so if you have an interview the following day, or are thinking of rustling up a romantic dinner for your partner, then maybe this isn’t particularly appropriate! However, Kevin and I have been married for over 30 years, so any romance does allow for an occasional abundance of garlic! (serves 2)
• 2 pork chops
• 1 head garlic, cloves separated but not peeled (squash them a wee bit with the flat of a knife if you wish)
• A little olive oil
• 100ml white wine
• Salt and pepper
oven-ready!Put an ovenproof dish, large enough to hold your chops, in the oven and heat to 220 C/gas mark 7. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the garlic for a few minutes then add the seasoned chops. Brown on both sides then remove with tongues and place in the dish with the bony ends sticking up. Deglaze the pan with the wine, reduce by half then pour it, along with the garlic over the chops. Cook in the oven for 15-20minutes, depending on size.

This is delicious served with mashed potato and steamed leafy greens. On this occasion, I’d picked a savoy cabbage earlier but when I cut into it, it had been spoiled by the recent frost. By this stage unfortunately, it was pitch black outside and poring with rain. Being a bit of a wuss when it comes to harvesting veg in inclement weather conditions, I plumped for the easier option of our last portion of this season’s frozen broad beans.The chops were heavenly, so juicy and tender and the garlic SO sweet! No vampires that night at least!

Pan-to-oven porkcops

Brawn

Also on the pork front, the brawn is ready (perfect on a sandwich or fried with some cooked Puy lentils and a side salad for lunch) and the ham hocks are cured and stored. Obviously, the hams need more time yet to wallow in their beery, treacly bath!

 

 

 

 

Ontoducky matters, Kevin is currently in the final stages of ‘processing’ the season’s remaining ducks and chickens. The ducks are particularly labour intensive because of all the down. A wee bit of bad news with our breeding ducks though as Puff seems to have injured her leg somehow. She can walk, of a fashion, but isn’t keen to put her full weight on it or to over-stretch it. Kevin gave her a
thorough check this morning but there’s nothing obvious. Within the first year of us getting Huff ‘n’ Puff, she must have twisted a leg on the rough ground of the surrounding land, and ever since she’s had a slight limp. Occasionally the Muscovy ducklings have done the same thing and we wonder if the breed is prone to such injury. Anyway, during her morning examination, she didn’t flinch or
vocalise, so we don’t think that she’s in any great pain. She’s being a sensible girl though and takes short flights to get where she’s going, or seems happy to sit in the garden and rest. Today, Huff and Biggles have been taking care of her, particularly when MacRae decided to stick his bill in and see what all the fuss was about! No need to worry though, Puff can still hold her on when it comes to that bothersome bird!

Resting

Resting

Taking care of the patient

Taking care of the patient

"This is how it's done Biggles Girl - even with a bad leg!"

“This is how it’s done Biggles Girl – even with a bad leg!”

And finally, disaster! I started another painting of Patches a couple of days ago and well, in a nutshell, I made a complete mess of it! The drawing went fine and her all-important eye but the background….way too fussy and awful in every respect so I’ve started again! Patches was obviously of a similar opinion…

Art critic

unimpressed!

biggles and patches

 

 

 

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