Thursday, October 27, 2011

Kansas Pork, It's What's For Dinner

Audrey and Maurene love to go to the Downtown Farmers Market on Saturday mornings. When we arrive Audrey does not wander long before she asks to go see Jeff and Dena. They are our friendly farmers from Hilltop Farms. We have been chatting with them at the market for a long time. Audrey had fun playing with a chicken from Hilltop Farm which I photographed for our header picture. 

Contrary to what is said in Food Inc., we know the names of our farmers and we like chatting with them. I try to plan egg buying from them when we are in town and have recently purchased several different pork products from steaks and chops to sausage. As Jeff will explain, it is worth the price.

We were recently contacted by the Kansas Pork Association and offered some kids pork recipes that I readily accepted. I was pleased to find many items including recipes, a coupon, as well as a magnet with the new USDA temperature guidelines in the package. It is nice to know that pork can be cooked medium rare to 145°F. I am new to cooking pork. Ground pork needs to come to 160°F.

With chops from Jeff and Dena and recipes from the Kansas Pork Association there is no way we could go wrong. Maurene was my helper for this super easy meal.

Pouring Italian Dressing on top.

Mo said she had to close the lid 'by myself!"

Mamma's plate.

We decided to go for simple and fun for this meal. Maurene placed two frozen chops in a bowl to let them marinade overnight. The next day we tossed them into a slow cooker and they were ready for dinner. Cook time on low was about 4 hours. The recipe said to toss the marinade and then grill them but we needed them  ready when we got home. After I pulled the chops from the cooker I added a little raw sugar to the marinade and reduced it on the stove for 15 minutes while I made rice, heated up frozen corn and pulled out a few spinach leaves for salad. Super easy and oh so tasty. 

The girls really like pork chops. And every time I serve Hilltop Farms pork chops Audrey and Maurene's daddy talks about how good dinner was for two days. If you have the option of locally raised meat, give it a try. Go talk to a farmer and see what he says about his meat. Jeff is a true believer and can sell anyone on how much better his meat is for you. That is what you want from the people raising your food.

Next spring we are going to try to make a trip to visit the piglets soon after they are born. It would be nice to get the girls comfortable with where their food comes from, not just the vegetables.

3 comments:

  1. Hi Audrey and Mo,
    You did a great job with the pork chops, especially the reduction sauce!! We'll have to try that one ourselves. Yumm-O Kids!! Can't wait til you guys come out to the farm:
    http://www.hilltopfarmskansas.com/index_ie.php

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  2. We look forward to it! I think the girls are going to really like the piglets.

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  3. How did I miss this!? Love the post and hope you get to see the piglets!

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