From Shanna's Kitchen: Spiced pork chops and squash

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  • | 5:00 a.m. January 1, 2012
Spiced pork chops and butternut squash
Spiced pork chops and butternut squash
  • Palm Coast Observer
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One of the most common New Year’s resolutions each year is to eat healthier or lose weight. I stopped making resolutions a while ago; I never held myself accountable for them. But a promise I am making to myself is to start 2012 on a healthy note, to eat better, cook fresher and exercise more.

My mom got me a subscription to Cooking Light magazine for Christmas, and my first issue hasn’t come in the mail yet, but I spent hours browsing their online recipes for my first healthy meal. I finally settled on spiced pork chops with butternut squash. Sounded delicious.

I have never cooked with pork or butternut squash before, so I figured this would be an adventure.
After shopping, and finding out how to pick a ripe squash from the produce guy at my local Publix, I put on my new apron and pulled out my knives (both Christmas presents) to get to work.

This is where the circus began. Being inexperienced in the world of cooking multiple dishes at once, I followed the directions laid out by the magazine. Come to find out, I should have listened to my instincts.
I enthusiastically spiced my pork and took in the aromas of nutmeg and cinnamon and placed the chops carefully in the pan. As they cooked, I cut up my squash, and froze when I realized I forgot to start the brown rice I wanted to serve with the meal. My parents were coming over for dinner, and I wanted this to be perfect.

I scrambled to get a chicken stock, water mixture boiled, but as I set the timer, I realized it was probably too late.

I set the pork aside to rest and finished up the squash mix. As my parents arrived at my apartment, the rice was nowhere near done, and to avoid a completely cold dinner, we chose to forgo the starch.
Both my parents agreed that the rice wasn’t needed and that the dinner was delish, but they are supposed to say that.

Lesson learned: Look at cooking times before preparing a meal; it’s a juggling act. Most likely, you should cook the meat last. Which was the case in this adventure.

I have adjusted the order in the directions. Happy New Year and healthy eating.

For the recipe, visit Shanna's Kitchen.



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