Monday, March 20, 2006

Pork Chops Negril

For a couple of years in the early eighties, Negril for me was a favorite destination. I haven't been there for a quarter of a century now, but have promised myself a return visit next winter. Until last night, I'd never had Pork Chops Negril there or anyplace else. Nor is Pork Chops Negril something I'd order in Negril, considering the exceptional quality of the local fish and "I-tal." My wildest Negril culinary episode happened one night, actually at about 4 a.m. in the morning, as I was walking back to the village from the "Rock." In a shack along the road, some natives were stewing up a turtle in a huge cauldron. They were reaching in, grabbing out chunks with their hands, and devouring them. Until last night, I'd never heard of Pork Chops Negril. It was my turn to fix dinner, it was getting late, and something quick and easy was in order. Upon finding this dish in an old cookbook, I could run to the Safeway, get what was needed, and bingo. The experience got me to thinking about another recipe from one of those old cookbooks. That one is called Key West Pork Chops. Key West is another place where I used to visit---even before Negril. We'll save those chops for tomorrow.


4 large shoulder or loin pork chops
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
vegetable oil
2 medium green peppers, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 cup sliced apples
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon vinegar

Season the chops with salt and pepper. Brown lightly in a small amount of vegetable oil in a medium-hot skillet. Remove the chops from skillet and set aside. Saute the peppers, onion, and apple for about 5 minutes. Add the sugar and vinegar. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Add chops to the mixture. Simmer slowly, covered, for 2-3 minutes or until pork is properly cooked. Serves 4

From Tropic Cooking, by Joyce La Fray Young: Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, CA 94707