Whosoever it was that the editors of Simply Delicious hired to name these dishes deserves some kind of award. And the award for naming-the-most-dishes-a-casserole-that-are-not-actually-a-casserole goes to….SIMPLY DELICIOUS. A casserole is defined as “a kind of stew or side dish that is cooked slowly in an oven.” 7-8: Chinese Pork Casserole is cooked relatively fast on a stove top. Doesn’t exactly sound like a casserole to me.
This recipe card is great because it basically teaches you to make a version of Chop Suey at home.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, Simply Delicious uses mushrooms pretty heavily throughout their recipes–about 20% of the recipes I’ve covered so far have involved them. I wasn’t a big mushroom eater when I was a kid, but I’ve (slowly) begun warming up to them. 7-7: Mushroom-Stuffed Pork Rolls aren’t especially fancy, but they’re not a bad option for lunch, dinner, or even making in a large batch for a party.
This is the first recipe (of 160+ at this point) that uses sage, described as being “savory & slightly peppery.” I like using sage with mushrooms (along with parsley, rosemary, & thyme–the “essential herbs,” according to Simon & Garfunkel), as the earthy flavors of both complement each other well.🌿
I think Simply Delicious was aimed at the working-mom demographic primarily–a lot of the recipes focus on easy weeknight meals just as much as the fancy dinner party options. 7-14: Easy-to-Make Pork Casserole is a casserole in the sense of a casserole being a bunch of random stuff thrown together in a vessel and then heated.
Casseroles are typically defined as the traditional green bean or tuna types that we (by that I mean mostly Americans) associate with that word. This dish is a loose mixing of vegetables and pork cubes, and is honestly much more reminiscent of 7-55: Sunday Pork Stew than of “casserole”. My mom seemed to like it though, when she made it back in April of 1992.
Since the last entry was a garlic & beef entry (8-20: Juicy Steak with Garlic Topping), here’s another garlic recipe for you, this time with pork: 7-34: Grilled Pork Slices with Garlic. I used a cast-iron grill pan for this, but you could use a BBQ or even just do a pan-sear if that’s what you’ve got.
This is some serious garlic game–whole cloves, in fact. But they’re right–blanching them does make them pretty mild and yummy. If you’re willing to risk some garlic breath, this recipe is a pretty decent one to check out.
I had mentioned in 7-36: Pork Tenderloin with Curry Sauce that I had an abundance of pork tenderloin due to a Costco sale. As I work my way through the freezer (mostly because I keep adding new things into it), I find myself with another pork tenderloin–this time, we’ll try it as 7-27: Pork Tenderloin in Creamy Sauce.
There’s not a HUGE difference conceptually between this one and 7-36: Pork Tenderloin with Curry Sauce–the major differences are just spices & condiments added to the final sauce. Otherwise, this is another perfectly serviceable weeknight dinner option, or even a decent meal for entertaining.
There’s a couple of rib recipes in Simply Delicious, but this one’s probably the most basic. It’s still a bit too cold out to BBQ, but 7-5: Spareribs gives you a pretty decent oven method of cooking ribs. As is usually the case, the inspiration for these came from needing room in my freezer after picking ribs up on sale somewhere a month or two ago.
Simply Delicious seems to echo my sentiments. However, their choice of the creepy pig doll for the recipe picture was less than optimal. Anyway, this is pretty easy to do, not that hard to clean up, and works pretty well. Sounds like a winner to me.
Back when I made 7-55: Sunday Pork Stew, I had mentioned that I was intending on making a different recipe, but that I didn’t have the mushrooms to make it. This recipe, 7-9: Hunter’s-Style Pork Chops, was the recipe I was intending to make.
Hunter’s-style pork chops seems to be a thing, although I’ve never heard of it before this book. Most recipes out there cite it as a “comfort food”, although if they’re already using the word “bland” in and around the recipe (see the second line above on the card), don’t expect anything avant garde.
Costco had pork tenderloin on sale, so I’ll use that as an opportunity to work my way through some of those recipes in the book. Here’s 7-36: Pork Tenderloin with Curry Sauce, which I made for dinner a few weeks ago.
True to its claims, I made this one pretty quickly one weeknight for dinner. You could make this with a cheaper cut of pork as well (such as a chop) if you don’t want to pay for the more expensive tenderloin cut.