This is an African recipe. I found it in a cookbook of African recipes called Food from Across Africa, so that kind of gives it away. There are some good recipes in the book, including this one, but the authors never say which country a recipe is from. This sucks. I poked around online for a clue of where this recipe originated, but found nothing. One has to take the author’s word that this recipe is truly from one of the African countries.
Regardless of its origin, it makes for a nice meal. Note that the recipe called for a pound of mashed blueberries, but after making the dish, I feel the berries would be better if run through a food processor instead of mashed with a fork.
What you’ll need:
For the meat:
- 1.5-2 lbs pork chops, boneless or bones cut away (bones can be cut away either before or after marinating)
- 1or 2 scallions
- 1 small carrot
For the marinade:
- 0.25 cups tamarind concentrate
- 5T honey
- 1 lb blueberries, mashed (or you could pulse them in a food processor for a different consistency)
- 2T dried garlic granules (I just used 2 cloves of garlic run through a garlic press
- 2T salt—good god is this excessive. 1 teaspoon is plenty
- 1T smoked paprika
- 1T sumac—I did not have this on hand
- 1T coarse-ground black pepper
- 1T extra virgin olive oil
- 1T balsamic vinegar
What to do:
Add the marinade ingredients to a large bowl and mix well. Depending on the bowl size, marinade the chops in the bowl, or figure out a way to marinade the chops that works for you. Marinade for at least 2 hours.
Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Put the pork and marinade on a rimmed cookie sheet and roast the pork in your oven’s middle rack for about 30 mins. Remove the pan and configure the heat to a medium broil.
Slice the chops into about quarter-inch or a little thicker strips and return them to the baking sheet, along with any juices they shed while cutting. Broil for about 10 minutes. In this time, the marinade will concentrate and become darker.
Finely slice the the carrots and scallions while the pork is finishing up—these are really a garnish.
Top the pork with the scallions and carrots before serving with noodles or another appropriate side dish.