Sunday, January 15, 2012

Fried Pork Bites

Just a reminder: I never claimed to be a food photographer.

Anyway, I decided that I wanted to spend more quality time with the kids. One on one. That is not easy in this house. One way I decided to make this effort was with food. After all, isn't food the universal language? Plus, as an added bonus, maybe my kids will pick up on some important cooking skills that will help them when they move out of the house one day. :)

I started last week with the firstborn (still need to share that recipe). This week was Child 2's turn. She had it all planned out last week I think. That is what she does. Poor Child 4. He doesn't think he will ever get his turn.

Sidenote: These are "guaranteed" cook with mom times. That doesn't mean we won't take advantage of the spontaneous moments, like when child 3 helped me make Pizza Snowballs the other day.

Anyway, Child 2 had this at school once for a family tree recipe activity. This recipe came from her friend whose mom R also happens to work at our school. It is a German recipe or at least comes from the German side of the family. It probably has a better name; I need to ask her. It wasn't on the recipe. So until then, I have made up my own. :)

Unfortunately, Child 2 poured so much of her energy into her dessert (she has a HUGE sweet tooth) that hubby and I ended up doing most of the work for this. But if she hadn't been busy baking, she would have been able to help with this. I would consider it kid-friendly. And it is easy and quick.

Enough of the chatter. Here is the recipe:
Fried Pork Bites

1 lb pork tenderloin (we used a 2 lb pork tenderloin...I am wondering if the the breakfast thin pork tenders wouldn't work too; they would probably be cheaper)

1 sleeve crackers (I used Ritz. I doubled just to make sure we had enough but one would have been fine)

1 egg

1 tbsp parsley

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

2 cups vegetable oil (I used my normal blend just to feel healthier :)

Crush the crackers. We put them in a gallon size ziplock and pounded away :). Add the parsley, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

Cut the pork into bite size chunks (like nugget size). Pound with a meat tenderizer to flatten.

Dip the pork pieces into one beaten egg.

Add to the bag of cracker mix.

Shake away.

Use tongs to remove the pork from the cracker mix and add to oil in the skillet. (I would recommend heating the oil first so it is hot and ready to fry)

Cook about 2 1/2 minutes per side.

I think with our meat (2 lbs), it took about three batches to get it all cooked.


I am beginning to see a pattern here. Out of the two times the kids have picked meals, they both have picked fried foods (which is very rare around here) and not exactly the cheapest meats. The first one chose catfish which costs a lot right now, and then the pork tenderloin was a bit more than we would spend on a typical meal. I think we may need to have a course on eating frugally AND healthy.

Oh, it was recommended to serve this with gravy. I didn't. I was already working on the cheesy hashbrown potatoes, Parmesan Pull-Aparts (bread), and black eye peas while helping my daughter with her dessert; I just couldn't add something else in. But hubby felt like it needed something like that. He ended up using ketchup to dip it. Oh, this tastes a lot like fried chicken even though it really is pork. :)

More later,

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