Now here is another one of my favorite easy, tasty, healthy and economical dinners. WHEW! I love to make Pork Piccata. First of all, I get the big 8-9lb pork tenderloin from costco for about $20. Then, I cut it into thirds, use my handy-dandy food saver to vacuum pack it and freeze it for later use. Now with each third pork loin roast (about 3lbs each), costing now $6.66, I cut into 8 half-inch pieces for my pork piccata. Now, the meat is costing approximately 83¢ per serving. And this is no small spec of meat, either. Now do you see what I’m talking about?!
The pork loin roast is a great cut of meat, very tender and very flavorful. It’s not as coveted as the more expensive pork tenderloin, but it is still plenty tender and you can’t beat the price. I love cooking with it, especially because it feeds my family of five fairly cheaply!
Now, don’t be intimidated when you hear the word “cutlet.” All you are doing is taking your 1/2-inch thick cut of meat, wrapping it with plastic wrap and whacking it with the flat side of your meat mallet. You don’t want to beat it to a second death, otherwise you are shredding your meat. You just want a nice flat piece of meat that’s evenly 1/4-inch thick.
Now that your meat isn’t so thick, it will cook quicker and will still remain moist and tender. Season your pork (or chicken or turkey!) with salt and pepper, and coat with your seasoned flour. You will sauté each cutlet in a hot pan with oil for a couple minutes on each side and then reserve the browned cutlets in your serving dish while you prepare the sauce.
Now, I know, lucky us we have a lemon tree. But when our tree is taking a break from producing a world record supply of lemons, I go to my local middle-eastern market where I get lemons super cheap. And, boy, they are bigger, juicer and cheaper than the lemons you get at the big grocery store chains. For my piccata sauce, I use white wine (2-buck-chuck works great), garlic, chicken broth, lemon juice and capers. Top it with a little butter and some lemon slices and dinner is served. I love serving this dish with asparagus or broccoli, or any other veggie that is in season and of course, on sale.
So don’t let the economy get you down. If you are not a costco or Sam’s club member, your local grocery store and smaller markets are always having sales on chicken breast and pork tenderloins. The key to being a smart shopper, is to do a little research and to stock up when those gonga deals show up.
And now, you have a fabulous dish to serve on the cheap!
Don’t eat pork? You can make this dish with chicken breasts, too.