Let’s see…

Change the peppers from green to red, the polenta to pasta, the pork chops to pork strips, and it’s just like the dinner we had the other night!

Okay.  Not quite.

But it does show how changing a few things can totally change the dish.  And that, I think, is really a big part of how I cook in the first place.

The mind works in mysterious ways, and my mind – especially when it comes to putting food together – is definitely one of the more mysterious.  I read a recipe and I’m immediately changing things as I’m going down the list.  Changing ingredients, changing cooking methods…   A recipe for a salad can become a soup without any effort, at all.

There are just so many different combinations of things that it’s difficult to say that this one is “it.”  At any given moment, any number of things could be “it.”  And with very few exceptions, it’s why I rarely ever make the same thing twice – or at least, twice the exact same way!

I’m sure it drives Victor crazy at times.

I could be asked by two different people within 60 seconds what to do with a pork tenderloin and odds are I would come up with two vastly different ideas.


Precise ingredients, measurements, cooking times and/or temperatures elude me.  As many who have read this blog over the years can attest, I’m horrible at writing recipes.  I’m good at giving ideas.  Not that good at telling you how to precisely execute them.

I guess I kinda figure that you’re supposed to take the idea and make it your own, too.

Making something for the two of us is different than you making it for the two – or six – of you.

Funny, though, because I have done menu and recipe development professionally and was very good at it.  But when you get me out of a professional kitchen, I just don’t have the same focus.  Of course, there’s also the part about someone else paying for everything and paying me, as well.

I can focus really well for the right salary!

So tonight I had a couple of boneless pork chops.  We had chops a couple of nights ago so I wanted something a bit different.

I also had three red bell peppers.

And lots of pasta.

I sliced the pork chops into strips and sauteed them in a splash of olive oil.  I added half an onion, and the three peppers, sliced into strips.  And a clove of garlic, minced.

I added one 15oz can of diced tomatoes in juice, brought everything to a boil, covered the pan, reduced the heat to simmer, and let it all stew for about 90 minutes.  Added a bit of salt and pepper.

Served over pasta.

I thought of adding a bit of cayenne or chili flakes but decided against it at the last minute.  The peppers were really sweet and they worked well as they were.  Some spice would have been nice, but tonight it was unnecessary.

Italian seasoning, fresh basil or other herbs, all sorts of things could go into this.

See?!?  Always thinking of a different way to do something.

I think it’s cooking ADD.