Eastside Road, April 14, 2011—CLEARLY ONE OF THE Hundred Plates, a recipe found many years ago in one of Elizabeth David's books (probably Mediterranean Food): pork chops with a kind of rub.
You salt the chops when you get them home, of course, and rewrap them loosely in their butcher paper, and set them aside until you're ready to cook them — in the refrigerator, if it's going to be more than an hour or two.
You grind up fennel seeds and black pepper with a mortar and pestle. You pound raw garlic to a paste with another one. That's sea salt, reduced to a powder, in the third, smallest mortar.
You broil the chops for a couple of minutes, then spread garlic on their surfaces, then drizzle a little olive oil on, then sprinkle the fennel seed on them and put them back to broil until one side is done. Then turn them and repeat the procedure on the other surface, using perhaps lemon juice as well here. Broil until done.
In fact I prefer to do all this in a black iron frying pan; I think they take a nicer glaze that way. But that's not easy if you're doing five of them at a time, as we were tonight.
With them, mashed potatoes and broccoli. Afterward, green salad; then ice cream.
Cheap Pinot grigio; Zinfandel, Preston of Dry Creek, 2008 (authentic and rewarding, not all jammy and alcoholic)