11 October 2007

Lemon-Basil Pork with Parmesan Risotto and Tomato-Cucumber Salad

Overall, this was a couple different sets of disappointments.

Disappointment #1: I really overcooked the meat. I've a ridiculous paranoia of undercooking meat, especially pork, and thus tend to overcompensate and overcook it instead. This pork, when I looked at it at the end of the recommended cooking time, had a sort of funny colour, so I assumed it wasn't finished and left it for another 5 or 10 minutes. Probably the smart thing would have been to test the temperature - we do have a meat thermometre - but why do the easy thing? Anyway, it still looked funny after the extra time, so I took it out and cut it open. Definitely cooked by that point.

Disappointment #2: The breading on the pork really didn't taste that good anyway. It was mostly made of lemon zest, so it should have been lemony, but there wasn't even a hint of lemon flavouring. I just don't get it. The version shown in the picture (it was a recipe from a magazine) must have been deep-fried because it was perfect and golden brown all around. This was just a touch damp and only browned on the side that had a bit of fat (that I was too lazy to trim off).

Disappointment #3: This is a really bad picture. It's not so very noticeable at this small size, but if you click through to the larger version, it's incredibly blurry. This was the best of a bad lot, really. So not impressed. I don't know how I managed to get such a bad shot, since mostly I haven't had a problem with blurriness in a while.

Anyway, the risotto is actually one from a box. I made proper risotto once and realized that I'm really, really not cut out to make anything that takes so long. But this boxed stuff is made by Lundberg, which sells the best rice blend I've ever had, so I decided to try it out. It was quite tasty, especially with extra Parmesan cheese grated over top.

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