Pork & Cider, you only have to look through a few old recipe books to see that this combo has some pedigree. The two ingrediants have a natural affinity like, say, Sage & Onion, which of course also goes very well with Pork & Cider...
The last two meaty chops from those clever rare-breeders at Crackbottle Road (Keythorpe Rare Breeds) needed something special, and what could be more special than a combination of flavours sourced almost exclusively from local suppliers. The pork was of course sourced from just down the road, the fresh Sage and Rockingham Forest Cider came from even closer to home (our Sage has gone berserk this year, I think it's the coffee grounds I keep tipping around it, that and the fact the hens can't get at it anymore!), the Garlic from wherever it is they grow garlic these days, but via our excellent local farmshop in Ashley.
This is another of my ultra-simple procedures. If it's a choice between a trip to the Red Lion for a pre-dinner pint, or a long cooking session at home, we generally try to do both, so the simpler the recipe is, the better. The chops were trimmed of their rind as I wasn't planning to try and crackle them. Seasoned, and (ahem) pan-fried with a few cloves of garlic until browned. Into the oven with them whilst a good few leaves of Sage are given a short fry-up. De-glaze with a generous slosh of cider, pour over the chops and return to the oven to cook through.
We served the chops with Mustard Mash, seasonal veg from Ashley Herb Farm, all drizzled with the sagey, garlicky, cidery juices. Oh! and a glass of Rockingham Forest Cider on the side too. Yum-yum!