A Miller Family Household Staple (with a French twist):
Growing up mom and dad had a handful go-to dinners. Mom made pork chops, mashed potatoes and gravy. Needless to say, pork chops were an essential week night dinner at my house. I’m guessing it was because they were inexpensive, and relatively easy to whip up after work. And, I haven’t talked about it yet, but I guess it was going to come up sooner or later, my mom was a very plain cook. Nothing was seasoned, and you added salt and pepper at the end, on your own plate. With that said, I think I enjoyed the meal so much because it had gravy! and mashed potatoes (smooth, buttery potatoes).
More back story, I am an only child (most of my childhood years, I longed for that impossible-to-have older brother). I became best friends with a girl named Kari, also an only child. If I had to describe the relationship, we were so close, we were practically sisters. Kari would be at my house for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and sometimes before I woke up on the weekends. Not because her house was bad, but because I was and still am very much a home-body, I like my house, my toys, my snacks and my mom’s dinner (Although her mom made puppy chow – now on the back of the Chex cereal box as “Muddy Buddies” – yum!)
Kari could eat mashed potatoes all night long if you let her, she was a bottomless pit when it came to having a second, and third helping. I preferred an even distribution of mashed potatoes, pork chop, and gravy. I would scoop all three onto my fork and eat it in one giant bite. (Something I just realized, I still do today as an adult).
In class, we made the classic Miller pork chop dinner, but instead of gravy we made a pan sauce – which is similar but not the same. Also different, we used seasoning, herbs, wine, and veal stock. It was so delicious. We pan seared the pork chops on and then covered them in butter and herbs to finish it off in the oven – amazing! The mashed potatoes were remarkable, I used a little too much butter – but I don’t think that is not an actual problem. Smooth, white potatoes with butter and cream, it’s really hard to hate.
So I have to say last night made me a little nostalgic. But it give me hope and encouragement that someday I will have a go-to pork chop, mashed potato and pan sauce meal for my family.
Update: I recreated this meal for Husband over the weekend as we watched Fuller House (another childhood memory) and it was amazing!