Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Whip It Up - What to Do With that Pesky Leftover Cheese Ball

My recipe this week for Whip It Up is something I came up with after perusing several different recipes for stuffed pork chops and comparing them to what I had in the refrigerator. One recipe called for gouda cheese. I wasn't sure if I even liked gouda. Then I remembered I had a leftover smoky cheese ball and figured - what the heck? If it doesn't work, we order pizza.

I was in the mood for grilled pork chops. There is a butcher shop in Troy, IL, called Kelly's 4-0. Actually, it's a gas station with a butcher shop and deli in the back. I kid you not, this place has the best meats. I also wanted to get Keller's corn. Keller's are the big corn farmers around these parts. They pick it and then sell it the same or next day at roadside stands. This corn is so sweet you don't need butter. But it doesn't hurt.

Anyway, today I stopped at Kelly's to get thick center cut pork chops. The Keller stand, right across the highway, was closed. Wah! I told Maddy we'd have to do baked potatoes. She was slightly bummed but she cheered up at the thought of butter, sour cream and cheese on a hot potato.

Lo and behold, the butcher shop had Keller corn on the cob for sale. Hot diggity. Crisis averted.

So, for the recipe. I didn't measure the spices, so draw your own conclusions. However, other than overcooking these chops, I don't know how you can mess this up. So, without further adieu, I give you Yowza Pork Chops. (My daughter named them after describing the taste).

Yowza Pork Chops

3 center cut pork chops, approximately 1 1/2 inches thick
1/2 8 oz smoky cheese ball (the kind you get in the deli case rolled in slivered almonds)
4 slices bacon, cooked and drained
Garlic powder, onion powder and cracked black pepper, to taste

Preheat an outdoor grill to medium heat (350-375)

In a small bowl, set the cheese ball out to come to room temperature.

Cook the bacon until crispy; drain. Let cool and crumble. Mix the cheese and bacon together. Divide into three equal portions.

Slice a pocket in the pork chops, from the edge to the bone. Place a portion of the cheese ball into the chop and flatten, staying slightly away from the edge of the chop. Pin the chop back together with a piece of uncooked spaghetti broken into the size of a toothpick. (Spaghetti won't burn like a toothpick)

Sprinkle the chops with garlic powder, onion powder and cracked black pepper.

Place the chops on the grill and cook for approximately 12-14 minutes per side, depending on your grill heat. The chops are done when the meat is white and the juices run clear.

Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Now, the questions:

Was it easy to follow? Well, considering I kind of made it up as I went, I think so. It's three ingredients, plus spices, so I'd call it easy.

Did it taste good? Yes, it did. Craig and Maddy loved them. I liked them too, but I think I cooked them just a bit too long as they were slightly dry. These chops were HUGE, so next time I think I'd get some smaller chops to avoid overcooking.

Would I try again? I think if I make them again, I will brush them with a garlic marinade as they grill. I might experiment with different cheeses, too.

Hope you enjoy it! Picks on Flickr here.

1 comment:

RA said...

Very interesting! This is a fun idea to use up whatever is lying around, which is always a good trick to have up your sleeve.