Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Cordon Bleu (Pork)

This recipe is one of Tom’s specialties.  While I hesitate to use the word "gourmet" on this blog, this recipe probably qualifies.  We’ve also tried making it with chicken breasts, but the pork is much more flavorful.  Many traditional German recipes call for veal, but we do not eat veal for personal (humane) reasons.  These cutlets can be assembled ahead of time until ready to bake, so you can clean up the mess before company arrives!   The gravy is optional, but goes wonderfully with the Cordon Bleu.  We normally make a side dish of Spätzle with Cordon Bleu, but tonight we had fresh potatoes from the garden, so no Spätzle.

Pork Cordon Bleu with a side of home-grown green beans.

Ingredients for Cordon Bleu cutlets
1 ½ lb. boneless pork loin end roast
Sea salt
Ground black pepper
3 tbl. Butter
8 slices Swiss cheese (thinly sliced)
8 very thin slices of ham
1 cup flour
1 tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. Paprika
3 eggs
1 ½ cups fine bread crumbs
¼ cup of olive oil, and 1/8 cup canola oil (for frying)

·        Slice pork loin into 8 slices, about ¾” thick each
·        Sprinkle one side lightly with salt & pepper
·        Using a meat mallet, pound pork out to about 1/8” thick, turning once (pair the pork slices by two’s according to size, as they will be sandwiched together after filling and both pieces will need to be about the same size)
·        Melt the butter in a small saucepan
·        Cut the Swiss cheese and ham into small chunks
·        Taking 2 pieces of pork at a time, brush the larger of the two with melted butter on one side
·        Add 4 or 5 pieces of Swiss cheese and ham to the buttered side of the pork, and brush the edges again with the melted butter
·        Place the smaller of the two pieces of pork on top of the Swiss cheese and ham, and fold the edges of the larger pieces up over the smaller piece (to seal the edges) then set aside on a tray.
·        Repeat this process with all pork pieces, then refrigerate them for about 30 minutes (butter will congeal and hold the edges together)
·        Put the flour, garlic powder and Paprika in a large bowl and mix well (sprinkle a little black pepper into the flour mix, too)
·        Pour bread crumbs into a medium-sized bowl
·        In a separate bowl, beat eggs until almost frothy
·        Dredge each piece of stuffed pork into the flour, then the eggs, then the bread crumbs
·        Place back on the tray and refrigerate another 30 minutes
·        In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and canola oil over medium heat until hot
·        Reduce heat to medium-low, add the pork cutlets and fry until lightly browned (turning once), about 6 minutes per side.  Remove from heat and reserve the pan drippings for the gravy.
·        Place cutlets in a lightly-oiled baking dish (do not crowd)
·        Heat oven to 325°
·        Bake at 325° for 45 minutes.  Serve with gravy (gravy recipe below)

Ingredients and Directions for Gravy
8 oz. mushrooms (stems removed), caps peeled and sliced
All of the oil that was leftover in skillet from frying Cordon Bleu cutlets
1 tbl. canola oil
1 tbl flour
1/3 cup sherry
½ cup chicken broth (or so)
dash of salt & pepper

·        Re-heat the oil (and the 1 tbl. extra canola oil) in the skillet the cutlets were cooked in, over medium-low
·        Sauté mushrooms in the oil until mushrooms give up their liquid, stirring frequently.
·        Add 1 tbl. flour, mix in well, continue cooking and stirring 2-3 minutes
·        Add sherry and chicken broth, salt & pepper
·        Increase heat to medium, and stir constantly until thickened, about 5 minutes (if gravy gets too thick, add a little more chicken broth – should be a fairly thin gravy, but not watery)
·        Remove from heat and allow to cool for about 5 minutes
·        Spoon gravy over cutlets just before serving

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