Creating dishes from the cookbook “Food of the Italian South” has become a new adventure in 2020. While I won’t be recreating each recipe to parody the saga “Julie Julia” (where a cook named Julie spends a year recreating every recipe in Julia Child’s cookbook), I am enjoying trying out a new recipe at least once a month. Also, in most cases, I’m using the recipe as a base and customizing it, not following it exactly.
Spezzatino all ‘Uva (pork cooked with grapes) caught my eye when I was perusing the cookbook and knew it would be a winner. Some of you might be thinking – really? Pork and grapes cooked in wine? I, of course, think about anything cooked in wine ends up a winner! But maybe that’s just me. 🙂
So the adventure begins.
Boneless pork chops cut into bite-sized pieces and browned in olive oil. Or you could also leave the pork chops whole if you prefer.
Let’s get this pork cooking in wine right away. Gives the meat more time to soak up the flavors, yum! A bay leaf is added to lend a herbaceous note to the sauce. Don’t you just love the word herbaceous? According to Merriam Webster it means, “relating to, or having the characteristics of an herb.”
Years ago a wine aficionado talked about a recipe that included a herbaceous seasoning/sauce and I knew I wanted to try that recipe just knowing there was herbaceous goodness in it.
These grapes were a little too hardy and didn’t break down in the sauce as I thought they should. I added them later in the cooking process, so have corrected the recipe to add the grapes earlier.
The sauce the wine and juices make is delightful. Paired with a nice red wine for dinner, this recipe is definitely a winner.
- 1 pound pork chop, cubed
- 1 garlic clove, smashed
- 5 ounces red wine
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups beef broth
- 8 ounces grapes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the olive oil in a skillet at medium heat.
- Brown the pork in the skillet turning pieces as necessary to brown all sides. Remove and set aside.
- Add the garlic to the pan and sauté on low heat. Pour in wine and increase the heat slightly, scraping any bits from the pan.
- Return the pork to the pan along with the bay leaf and beef stock. Season with salt.
- Optional: add grapes at this time or near the end of cooking if you prefer the grapes firm.
- Cook until fork tender (about 2 hours). Add more stock if needed.
- Option: thicken sauce with 2 tablespoons flour.