Quesnel Farmer's Market, Quesnel BC


Pork and Apple Hot Pot

 3 tbsp                  Vegetable oil, more as needed
3                          Onions, cut in two and then into thin half-moons
8 oz                     Sliced bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips
1/3 cup                Flour
1 tsp                    Apple pie spice
6                          Boneless pork loin chops (each  weighing 6 to 8 ounces)
3 med/2 lg          Granny Smith apples
2 cups                 Sharp, pressed apple cider.

Heat oven to 325 deg F. In a large skillet, heat 3 tablespoons oil and add onions. Sauté until soft, about 10 mins. Transfer to a bowl. Add bacon to pan and sauté until fat is rendered and bacon begins to brown, about 3 mins. Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon, leaving behind as much fat as possible. Add bacon to onions and set aside.

In a freezer bag, mix together flour and apple pie spice. Add 3 chops, seal and shake until chops are coated. Shake off excess flour and place chops on a plate. Flour remaining 3 chops and add to plate; reserve spiced flour. Return skillet to medium heat. Add chops 3 at a time, searing on both sides then transferring to a plate; reserve oily skillet.

Peel, core and cut the apples in two. Slice each half into thin wedges. In an ovenproof pot (preferably glazed ceramic) 8 inches in diameter and 5 inches deep, layer ingredients compactly as follows: a layer of onions and bacon, 3 chops, a layer of apple slices, some more onions and bacon, the final 3 chops, a layer of apple slices, remaining onions and bacon, and a final layer of apples.

Add spiced flour to oily skillet. If pan is dry, add a small amount of oil. Place pan over medium-low heat and whisk flour into oil to make a smooth paste. Slowly add apple cider, whisking until smooth. Bring mixture to a boil, then pour into pot, letting it filter slowly to bottom.

Cover pot with a lid or waxed paper and foil. Place on a baking sheet. Bake until chops are tender and apples are very soft, about 3 hours. Serve hot.

Yield: 6 servings.

Submitted By: Cathie Allen