Tips on making not-boring pork chops, plus a recipe for homemade Shake ‘N Bake

In the flurry of post-Harvey news last week, I didn’t blog about a pork chop story I wrote in last week’s food section about how I’m rediscovering this ubiquitous, inexpensive cut of meat.

These thick-cut pork chops from Farmhouse Delivery would be best seared in a pan or on a grill, but you could also bake them. Contributed by Farmhouse Delivery

In the story, you’ll find several recipes for cooking pork that do not involve shaking it in a bag of crumbs, but that’s the only way I knew how to cook pork chops until somewhat recently. Don’t get me wrong: I still love Shake ‘N Bake, homemade or store-bought, but if you’ve never made your own version of this popular breadcrumb mixture, here’s a basic recipe and technique that’s great for chicken or pork.

Homemade Shake ’N Bake

3 cups breadcrumbs
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon dried onion flakes
1 pinch dried basil leaves
1 pinch dried parsley
1 pinch dried oregano

In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients until the breadcrumbs are no longer clumpy from the oil. Store in a Mason jar with a tight-fitting lid for up to two months.

When ready to use, heat oven to 425 degrees. Pour a cup of the mix in a large zip-top bag. Pat the pork chops (or chicken breasts) with a wet paper towel so the skin is moist enough for the breadcrumbs to stick. Place one pork chop at a time in the bag, seal and shake. Remove the pork chop from the bag, shaking off excess breading, and place on a baking tray lined with aluminum foil. Repeat with remaining chops and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

— Adapted from a recipe on allrecipes.com

Shake ‘N Bake has been around since 1965.

 

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