For this weeks Chopped Challenge I was given the following four ingredients: Pumpkin, Sweet Potato, Chili and Mushrooms. Quite an interesting set of ingredients which asked for some creativity. After some consideration I settled for the following dish: A pumpkin and sweet potato mash with spicy pork chops and a mushroom cream sauce. The mash would be the biggest challenge as I had no blender or pestle to my disposal. In the end everything worked out beautifully. The pork chops were cooked to perfection and the extra lemon and chili on top really added a whole new dimension to them. The mushroom sauce complimented the mash beautifully and was best eaten together. The mash itself turned out fantastic as well. To balance out the sweetness of the sweet potato and pumpkin, I added salt, pepper and curry powder. Here’s how I did it:
Ingredients (serves 3)
- 6 Pork Chops
- 20g Pork Belly Herbs
- Olive Oil
- 3 Chili’s
- Lemon Juice
- 250ml Cream
- 29g Gravy Powder
- 400g Mushrooms
- Half a Bottle Gourd (Pumpkin)
- 1 Sweet Potato (250g)
- Curry Powder
- Firstly; peel the gourd, chop off the ends, cut in half, scoop out the seeds and dice one half of the gourd. We will not be needing the second half of the gourd. Peel and dice the sweet potato. Now add the gourd and the sweet potato to a pan and fill the remainder the remainder of its content with water. Add a pinch of salt and turn on the heat until the water boils. At this point, leave the water boiling for 30-40 minutes.
- While the gourd and sweet potato is cooking, chop the mushrooms in half cook them in a pan with some olive oil until they have a nice brown color.
- Add the cream and the gravy powder in a sauce pan and turn the heat on. Make sure to keep stirring to avoid lumps. Add a little water (to your own preference) if the sauce is too thick for your liking. Once it begins to boil, add the mushrooms and stir once more. Leave the pan on a low temperature.
Depending on how quickly you went through steps 2 and 3, you can now either cook
the pork chops or finish the mash. I will begin with the pork chops first.
- Finely chop the chili and season the pork chops with the pork belly herbs. Add some olive oil to a hot pan and then add the pork chops. Sprinkle some of your finely chopped chili over the pork chops and add a squirt of lemon juice. Do this for both sides of the pork chops.
- Lastly, we’ll finish up the mash. By now both the pumpkin and the sweet potato will be very soft. Get rid of the water in your pan leaving only the pumpkin and sweet potato over. Now it’s time to mash it up, ideally using a blender or a pestle. If both aren’t present, a large spoon also suffices. When mashed (no chunks!), add some salt, pepper and curry powder to your own liking and stir.
Enjoy your meal!
Written by Piet