Tonight’s dinner was definitely one of those to there and back again meals.  I really wasn’t sure what I was going to cook.    I hadn’t taken anything out of the freezer and I wasn’t going to be home right away after work.

I needed to stop by Victor’s mom’s house and pick up her prescriptions to drop off at the Acme pharmacy.  Acme.  Usually my least-favorite store.

I dropped off the prescriptions and started aimlessly wandering the store.  I had the sweet potatoes at home, but that was it.  Pork goes with sweet potatoes, so I wandered over to the meat department and picked up a couple of boneless pork chops.  I then headed to the produce section.  I was standing in the middle of the produce section, totally lost in thought when one of the employees asked me if I needed any help.  I laughed and said I was just lost in thought.  I wandered around a bit more and standing there, another employee asked me if I needed any help.  If you ever need to go into the Witness Protection Program, don’t go grocery shopping with me.  People either ask me if I need something or ask me if I work there.  Anonymity and grocery shopping do not go together.

I finally decided on an apple and some broccoli.

Armed with my goodies and a crossword book for Nonna, I headed to the self-check where I ran into a friend from work.  Small-talk and small purchases and we were on our merry ways.

When I finally got home and started dinner, I decided that sweet potatoes called for jerk pork chops.  I like the spicy blends of island fare, but don’t often make it.  No particular reason…  I have all the various herbs and spices at hand.  I just don’t often blend them together.

I would imagine there are any number of jerk seasoning recipes out there, but I tend to lean towards thyme, allspice, cayenne, and onion. The recipe is an approximation.  It’s teaspoon/teaspoon/half-teaspoon measurements that can be translated to tablespoon/tablespoon or cut to less.

Jerk Seasoning

Mix together:

  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (more or less, to taste)

It’s pretty simple to pull together with spices most folks probably already have in the kitchen.  And it does invoke that island taste!

I rubbed it liberally on the chops and seared them on the stove top and then put them into a 350° oven for about 15 minutes.

Before the chops went into the oven,  I peeled and cut up a sweet potato, mixed it with a cut up apple and into the oven it all went.  When they came out I drizzled it all with a bit of maple syrup.

Steamed broccoli finished the plate.

It definitely worked.  The chops were juicy and really flavorful, the apples worked perfectly with the sweet potatoes, and maple syrup…  well…  maple syrup makes everything better.