Thursday, January 7, 2010

Pan-fried pork chops, inspired by friends

San Francisco has no shortage of good places to shop for groceries, and my newest discovery is Falletti Foods. I'd never really noticed this charming place until I began eating at Nopalito, which, as you know, I am completely obsessed with. Nopalito is next door to Falletti's. Often, after a delicious dinner of carnitas, sturgeon tacos, and enchiladas en mole (followed by homemade popsicles in Cinnamon Chocolate and Cafe con Leche), the husband and I would emerge in happy little food comas and notice the bustling market.

"We should check that out," one of us would say.

"Yes," the other would reply, "but not now. I can't look at any more food. Take me home so I can put on my pajamas."

And so went the cycle. Poor Falletti's.

But one day the stars aligned and I ended up there on a day when I had not just shortened my life with the best Mexican food on the planet and was therefore able to walk around and shop like a normal, non-stuffed person. And I discovered that Falletti's is really something special.

In addition to the usual niceties which are de rigeur here, including cheeses from Cowgirl Creamery and a rockin' produce section, they also have an amazing meat counter, including sausages made on site. And did I mention they sell Humphry Slocombe ice cream? If you can swallow the price ($8 for a pint!), you might have your whole ice cream world as you know it turned upside down.

What I'm leading up to here is that this place is awesome. I mean, you do the math:

Storemade sausage +  Vietnamese coffee ice cream + FREE PARKING = happy Hungry Dog.

So, I stopped by on Tuesday and picked up some pork chops. I'd had pork chops on the brain ever since I saw Mark's post over at Egg to the Apples for Coca Cola pork chops. I'd also recently been inspired by Croque-Camille, who had mentioned the idea of making red cabbage with apples.

So there you are: pan-fried pork chops with red cabbage and apples.

There are a few other ingredients in there--including leeks (the little greenish squares in the photos), and thyme, which I sprinkled over the chops before tossing them in the pan. But it was a pretty simple dinner.

Now, before you say, "Hungry Dog, cool it with the cabbage already!" let me break the bad news, which is that this is not the last cabbage post you're gonna see in the next few days. Look, when you get a CSA box delivered, you eat what they bring. Recently, they've been bringing a lot of cabbage. Apparently this is what it means to eat seasonally: in the spring you get beautiful crimson strawberries; in the winter you get humongous cabbages that each seem to weigh about 10 lbs and will not spoil no matter how long you ignore them. In fact, they just seem to get bigger and angrier. Sooner or later, you must reward them for their perserverance and do something with them.

Luckily I don't mind cabbage too much. But coming up with new ideas for it has been challenging. So thanks to my friends (even if they are virtual!) for the inspiration.


  1. I'll take a couple of those cabbages off your hands! I wish I could get that CSA stuff. :D

    The chops look great, I'm actually buying some myself this weekend. They're on sale. Heh.

  2. I have yet to check out Falletti, just because they're out of the way for me. But maybe I should check out Nopalito and Falletti and kill two birds with one stone, eh? :) BTW, that pork chop looks perfectly browned. And I still can't get over how purple that red cabbage looks cooked.

  3. No worries about the cabbage - it's seasonal and healthy! Maybe I'll actually go out and buy one... :) And maybe it'll even photography as prettily as yours did - wow, that's some bright purple cabbage. More, please!

  4. I've been holding off on getting a CSA box this weekend because there are so many greens scheduled for delivery this time of year. Perhaps if you can find a use for all that cabbage, I can find use for the greens. Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. FREE PARKING! Hungry Dog, why did you wait so long? OK, now I'm starting a SF list of places to visit. We usually go to--oh, what's the name of it? It's on California street near Arguello. Poop. I forget.

    We're eating a lot of winter veggies too. Hearty. This looks like a great way to treat them. LOVE the color!

  6. One day I will visit San Francisco. What is a CSA box? Your pork chops look divine. What about giving sweet and sour stuffed cabbage a whirl? It=Yum!

  7. I may have to give the cabbage a try. Oddly, my mom and I were just talking about red cabbage this morning. Fate? Hmmm. They sure give those chops a lovely bed to it upon.

  8. Bob: I love pork chops--and they're pretty cheap, even when they're not on sale. Hope you found a cabbage!

    Ben: I suggest checking out falletti, but you REALLY need to check out Nopalito.

    nightowlchef: Isn't it crazy-purple? So pretty--make me WANT to eat it!

    Apples and Butter: thanks for visiting! I like your blog. As for the greens, we get a lot of those too--kale, chard, collards--I like them all sauteed, but they're easy to toss in a soup, too.

    Kate: You should come visit! And let me know when you do! :) I wonder what the place is you're talking about--is it Mexican?

    cookbookapprentice: You should definitely visit, it's a great city.CSA stands for community supported agriculture--you can get subscriptions to weekly or monthly produce boxes from local farms, enabling you to eat both seasonally and locally (and have it delivered to your door!)

    oneordinaryday: I think red is the best of the cabbages--it has the best flavor. Green, white--I could live without.

  9. can't wait for a cabbage recipe. they look so beautiful but i never know what to do with them! ps. so flattered 'friends' were mentioned in the post re: Alembic!

  10. What would I give to have few food market gems like the ones you have discovered-A lot!!!

    I know you have received plenty of cabbage in your CSA box but, it is so versatile. There is so many dishes that can be prepared with cabbage-Yum! I would be happy to take a few from you.

  11. I love fried pork chops. I think it harkens back to when my Dad used to make Shake'n'Bake ones for us on the weekends. Chewing the crispy bits off the bone was the best part, too.

  12. Mmm...pork chops *licks lips*. Love the sound of the CSA box but would be tricky trying to find a use for all that cabbage. Funnily enough, I've been looking at kitchen science sites (planning party for eldest) and found out that red cabbage juice can be used as a pH indicator. There you go, if you can't eat all of it, use it as a party trick!

  13. First, let me say I am envious of all the wonderful resources available to you in SF. I've been there and love that part of the country. Next, I love your blog and I'll be back.

  14. DS: We had so much fun with you & RW!

    Velva: It's rue, cabbages are pretty versatile. The only thing I;m pretty sure you can't do with them is bake (although I'm sure somebody has!)

    Food Gal: Ha! Lucky you. I always wanted my family to do Shake 'n' Bake but they never did...

    shaz: Aren't you a fountain of knowledge! ;) Look forward to you cabbage experiments w/MC Senior.

    Judy: Thank you so much for visiting, and the compliment! I'm very much looking forward to checking out our blog too.

  15. It looks delicious and perfect for the season!

    I have to let you know that visiting your blog is a mix of pleasure/torture for me. Pleasure for all of the gorgeous food you share with us (and your clever wit)... torture because it makes me miss home.

    Falletti's sounds like heaven, and good for you for supporting the CSA.

  16. Lucky that you can still get CSA in January! I love purple cabbage, actually, and I really like the color it adds to your dish!

  17. Love cabbage, browned some in olive oil just last night! Bring on the recipes!

    I definitely don't need to know about any more delicious ice creams!

    And lastly, I nearly cried aloud when I read Cafe con Leche popsicles! OMG

  18. That is the purplest (word?) cabbage I have ever seen!

    CSA doesn't work here too well in the winter (Minnesota) but I like to check out farmer's markets in the summer and grow some veggies out in the back yard. I know it is a wonderful thing for city dwellers who may not have room-or the time it take-to have a garden. And fresh it best :)

  19. This is a great post! First I can't tell you how many times my partner and I leave restaurants in what we dub a 'food coma' and promptly go home to lay about and groan and secondly your comment about the cabbages getting bigger and angrier is too funny!

  20. Mari: I didn't know you used to live here--in SF or just the Bay Area in general? Hope you get to return home one day...

    Jen: Yes, it is lucky indeed to get a CSA year-round. We love it!

    Barbara: The cafe con leche popsicles are ridiculous. Totally delicious.

    tamilyn: You're lucky you can grow your own veggies & fruit! Wish we could do that. We don't have a yard that's really conducive to it though plus it's cold and foggy most of the year.

    Megan: Thanks--that's how they strike me--just big, stubborn, and angry that they're not getting used!

  21. it may be a little cold, but i made this in the oven once also...

    BBQ cabbage

  22. haha -- we were the SAME with our CSA! We were having dark leafy greens with everything for a while. Lots of stir-frys, but it got to the point where sometimes things would get wilty or the amounts in the box were so oddball and small, I'd throw all the random greens in a food processor, cook out all the water, and mix with ground meat to make a meat loaf. An extra egg would keep things from falling apart, but it was a heck of a way to clear the CSA deck for the week!

  23. A Year on the Grill: thanks for the link, I'm checking it out now! BBQ cabbage sounds great.

    denise: I love the greens-to-meatloaf idea, I might have to steal that one! Sometimes we get these odd amounts of things, and blending them up is a great way to make sure they get used.

  24. Thanks for the shout-out, and I love the image of cabbage getting bigger and angrier. I laughed out loud and had to read the paragraph to my husband.

    And another good cabbage use? Coleslaw. The bonus is it also uses up carrots, another thing we get a little too much of from the CSA in the winter.

    I do feel lucky, though, that I can get a CSA through the winter. A lot of places just don't have the means to continue producing fruits and vegetables when the weather turns cold.

  25. better you than me with the excess of's not too nice to my digestive tract. overshare? :)
    moving on...this is a gorgeous dish and regardless of my battle with cabbage, i'd enjoy it very much!