Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Cuban Pork Chops & Sofrito Mashed Potatoes

I must confess, I have no idea who Guy Fieri is. He wasn't on Food Network when I was in a place to watch it, but he does seem to have some good looking dishes. This week, I got really ambitious and did TWO recipes for the FNCCC; Cuban Pork Chops with Mojo and Sofrito Mashed Potatoes.

Pork Chop & Tomato Smashed Potatoes

Cuban Pork Chops with Mojo
Courtesy Guy Fieri

  • 1 cup plus 1/4 cup orange juice, divided
  • 1/2 cup plus 1/4 cup fresh lime juice, divided
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 4 (1-inch-thick) bone-in pork chops (My chops weren't this thick, I just cooked them for a shorter amount of time)
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper (I just did a few grinds of freshly ground black pepper)
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt (Again with the insane amounts of salt. I'd use maybe one TEASPOON of salt here.)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin*
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder*
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder*
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano*
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup white wine (I think you could just get away with water or chicken stock here)
  • 1 cup watercress, for garnish (I figured since this was just for garnish I'd leave it out)
  • 1 Roma tomato, chopped, for garnish (Skipped)
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced, for garnish (The only reason I didn't skip on this was because I had an avocado that was on it's last legs and needed to be used)

*I used the full amount of spices listed in the recipe (well, cut in half for two chops) and there was oodles left over. I think you could safely cut the recipe in half and still have enough for 4-6 chops.


In a gallon-sized resealable plastic bag, combine 1 cup orange juice, 1/2 cup lime juice, and vinegar. Add pork and let it sit and marinate for about 1 hour in refrigerator (I poured the marinade over frozen pork chops and let it thaw in the juice).

In a small mixing bowl, combine all dried spices. Pat the pork chops dry with a paper towel and rub with the dry spice mixture.

Heat oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Place the pork chops in the pan and sear on 1 side until brown. Flip over and turn the heat down to medium-low. Add onion and saute for 2 minutes. Then add the garlic and continue to cook until garlic begins to brown. Pour in the remaining 1/4 cup orange juice, 1/4 cup lime juice, and white wine. Simmer until the liquid is slightly reduced and begins to thicken. The chops should be cooked through.

Remove the chops from pan and put on a warm plate. Continue to reduce juices in pan by half. Pour over the chops and serve immediately.

Garnish with watercress, tomatoes and avocado (Garnish? We don't need no stinkin garnish!).


Sofrito Mashed Potatoes
Courtesy Guy Fieri

  • 2 tablespoons salt (Does this seem excessive to you? I skipped it completely)
  • 2 pounds potatoes (recommended: Yukon gold)
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onions
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped (I used a yellow bell pepper for both green and red)
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 3 ounces tomato sauce (I didn't want to open a box of tomato sauce for such a small amount so I just thinned out the remainder of the can of tomato paste which actually worked out perfectly)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (I substituted evaporated milk for the cream)
  • 3 tablespoons salt (Uh, really? Skip this too. Salt the potatoes to taste after you're done making them)
  • Salt and pepper (MORE SALT! YAH!)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves (I realized I didn't have any fresh so I sprinkled in a teaspoon or so of dry into the sauce)


Fill a large pot with water, salt (I didn't salt the water, but if you do, I don't really suggest that you use TWO TABLESPOONS of salt to do it with)and potatoes and bring to boil. Cook until fork tender.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium sauce pot over medium heat. When oil is hot add onions and peppers and saute for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until it begins to brown. Lower the heat and add tomato paste and stir for 3 to 5 minutes. Deglaze with white wine and reduce by half.

Add tomato sauce (or cheater thinned out tomato paste) and bring to simmer for 5 minutes. Then stir in butter and cream and set aside, covered to keep warm.

When potatoes are fork tender, drain water and mash slowly adding the sofrito mixture. Season with salt and pepper and garnish with cilantro.


The Verdict: Aside from the fact that the potato recipe called for FIVE tablespoons of salt for 4-6 servings, it's a pretty great recipe. I wouldn't think to add tomatoes to mashed potatoes but it actually worked out really well. The pork chops were absolutely fabulous too. I loved the tang that the marinade gave to the meat and the spice rub (with the salt adjustments) was just right with those flavors. Martijn nodded and mumbled his approval too while he was shoveling dinner into his mouth. I would recommend both of these recipes to anyone. The best part was that if you don't count the marinating time for the pork chops, dinner only took about a half an hour to make!


Nancy C said...

If potatoes are involved, it's a win. Guy Fieri is quite annoying, but apparently can cook.

Sarah said...

Both look great! The potatoes are like nothing I have ever had so I will be adding them to my to-try list.
Crazy amounts of salt. We have had this problem before.....
The dredge amounts for my fish were off too - lots of it left over,
Luckily you didn't ruin your dish with the salt. They really need to check these things.
THanks for cooking along with FNCCC!

Noodle said...

sounds so yummy!!!!

Alea said...

Wow, that looks wonderful! I think you were smart to skip the excess salt. I will skip it as well when I try these recipes.

P.S. I don't know who he is either.

Candi said...

Looks delicious! Guy was one of the winners from the Next Food Network Star series. You might be able to see him on youtube. He's pretty funny and hosts a show called Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. You did a great job and well done for 2 recipes!!

Keetha Broyles said...

Oh Mub, that looks delicious!!!!

Oh honey, Guy Fieri is the BEST thing ON the Food Network!!! I love his "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" show.

brainella said...

That is a LOT of salt. I didn't think Guy Fieri used that much, but dang. He's awesome. I love him. He's a character. These are definitely some recipes I could try.

I'm wondering if chefs actually measure when they use salt because it seems awfully excessive to use that much. And many chefs seem to list an over abundance of salt in their recipes.

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

Great picks, looks very tasty!

Unknown Mami said...

That looks scrumptious!

4 Lettre Words said...

This one sounds great. We loved mashed potatoes, especially with "stuff" added!

Anonymous said...

Really interesting...I'm always looking for new pork chop ideas because Dutchie likes them so much.

I do wish we could get thicker ones though. I want to try Delia's pork chops with mushroom sauce recipe that I saw on BBC last week, but I never see chops that thick here and they're supposed to bake for an hour...

Jenny said...

Love Cuban food. I am totally copying this recipe...although I am out of all my homemade sofrito. Do you know the show "Daisy Cooks!" Daisy Martinez. Really yummy Cuban recipes.

Meal Planning with Connie said...

Wow! Sounds yummy and looks gorgeous! Such a pretty plate of food! Thanks for sharing and participating! You're a sweetie!
Hope you guys have a wonderful weekend.
Looks like we're in a nice one here in MS. After all the terrible storms in our area last weekend, we're ready for a nice one! Blessings!

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