Cauliflower Cheese Casserole

FOR THE MAC & CHEESE
Butter, for baking dish
2 medium heads cauliflower, cut into florets
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
1 c. heavy cream
6 oz. cream cheese, cut into cubes
4 c. shredded cheddar
2 c. shredded mozzarella
1 tbsp. hot sauce (optional)
Freshly ground black pepper

FOR THE TOPPING
4 oz. pork rinds, crushed
1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley, for garnish

Preheat oven to 375° and butter a 9”-x-13” baking dish. In a large bowl, toss cauliflower with 2 tablespoons oil and season with salt. Spread cauliflower onto two large baking sheets and roast until tender and lightly golden, about 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large pot over medium heat, heat cream. Bring up to a simmer, then decrease heat to low and stir in cheeses until melted. Remove from heat, add hot sauce if using and season with salt and pepper, then fold in roasted cauliflower. Taste and season more if needed.

Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish. In a medium bowl stir to combine pork rinds, Parmesan, and oil. Sprinkle mixture in an even layer over cauliflower and cheese.

Bake until golden, 15 minutes. If desired, turn oven to broil to toast topping further, about 2 minutes.

Garnish with parsley before serving.

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 slices bacon
1/2 cup (2 ounces) chopped white or yellow onion
2 large garlic cloves, minced or grated, about 1 tablespoon
1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes (2 to 3 medium), peeled and diced (or try cauliflowere)
4 cups no-salt chicken or vegetable low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1/2 cup (2 1/4 ounces) shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives or finely chopped scallion greens, for serving
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (optional)

Set a paper towel-lined plate or a rack near the stove. In a large saucepan over medium heat, add the oil and heat until shimmering. Add the bacon and cook, turning occasionally, until crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to the prepared plate to drain, leaving the oil and bacon drippings in the pan.

Add the onion to the pan and cook, stirring, until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the potatoes and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low to maintain a simmer. Cook until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer about half the potatoes to a bowl and mash until almost smooth but still a little chunky. Return the potatoes to the pan along with the sour cream, 1/4 cup (about 1 ounce) of the cheese and the pepper.

Cook, stirring, until the cheese is melted and the soup is heated through, about 2 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning, if needed.

Ladle the soup into bowls, garnish with the crumbled bacon, the remaining cheese and the chives or scallion greens, and serve.

Mushrooms Stuffed with Goat Cheese

24 large cremini mushrooms (1 1/2 pounds), stems discarded
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon rosemary leaves, plus one 3-inch sprig of rosemary
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons fine bread crumbs
6 ounces fresh goat cheese, cut into 24 pieces

Preheat the oven to 400°. In a bowl, toss the mushrooms with 3 tablespoons of the oil and the rosemary leaves and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the mushrooms to a baking sheet, rounded side up. Roast for about 30 minutes, until tender and browned around the edges. Let cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.

In a skillet, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil. Add the rosemary sprig and cook over moderately high heat until the leaves are crisp, 30 seconds. Drain on paper towels, then strip off the leaves. Pour off all but 1 teaspoon of the rosemary oil and reserve it for another use.

Add the bread crumbs to the skillet and toast over moderate heat until golden and crisp, 2 minutes. Stir in the fried rosemary leaves and season with salt and pepper.

Gently press a piece of goat cheese in the center of each mushroom, sprinkle with the bread crumbs and serve.

Baked Crispy Tofu

1 (14 oz/ 396 g) extra firm tofu (or firm tofu)

Batter:
1/2 cup soy milk (or other plant-based milk)
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons parsley , dried (or Italian seasoning blend)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt

Coating:
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup cornmeal

Serving options:
Thai sweet chili sauce, ketchup, Sriracha sauce, or mayonnaise

Preheat oven to 400 degree F (200 C). Spray a thin layer of oil onto a baking tray.

Carefully press the tofu with your hands. Wrap a few layers of kitchen paper towels (or cheesecloth) around it to absorb the extra liquid. Cut tofu into squares that are about 1/3 inch (1 cm) thick and 2 inches (4 cm) long.

Mix the batter in a large bowl. Mix the panko and cornmeal in another bowl.

Set up your workstation by placing the batter, plate of panko mixture, and the baking tray all in a row.

Pick up a piece of tofu with your hand and dunk it into the batter. Then place it into the panko bowl, flip to coat the other side, then transfer it onto the baking tray. Repeat the process with the remaining tofu.

Spray tofu with a thin layer of oil. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, flipping once in between, until both surfaces turn golden.

Serve hot or cold with homemade sweet chili sauce, ketchup.

Chinese Deviled Eggs

6 extra large eggs
5 tablespoons mayonnaise (or to taste)
1 heaping teaspoon wasabi or Chinese hot mustard (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons zha cai Chinese pickled mustard greens, diced (Optional)
1 green onion , thinly sliced
Chinese chili flakes (or your favorite chili sauce)

To boil the eggs, fill a pot with enough water to cover the eggs. Bring the water to a boil, then slowly lower the eggs using a ladle. Boil for 12 minutes, stirring the water in a circular motion with a spoon for the first minute (to keep the egg yolk in the center). Once the eggs are done, run them under cold tap water to stop cooking.

Once the eggs are cooled, peel them and slice them in half lengthwise.

Gently pop out the cooked yolks into a big bowl using a small spoon. Mash them with the backside of a spoon. Make sure to mash them as finely as you can, so the finished filling will be smooth.
Add the mayonnaise, wasabi or mustard, and rice vinegar to the bowl. Mix with a spatula (or an immersion blender) just until it forms a smooth paste. You can adjust the taste by adding more mayo, wasabi, or vinegar.

Add the zha cai pickles, if using. Mix again to distribute throughout the yolk mixture.

Transfer the yolk mixture to a piping bag with a large star tip, or a small ziplock bag with a corner cut off.

Pipe the yolks into the halved egg white cups.

Garnish the eggs with chili flakes (or hot sauce) and green onions. Serve as an appetizer.

These eggs can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge in a sealed container for up to 2 days.

Bucatini Cacio e Pepe with Cherry Tomatoes

1 pound bucatini, broken in half
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon very coarsely ground black pepper
1 tablespoon very coarsely ground white pepper
1 cup coarsely chopped cherry tomatoes
1 3/4 cups freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese (6 ounces)
Salt

Cook the bucatini in a large pot of boiling, salted water until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain the bucatini and return it to the pot. Add the olive oil, black and white pepper and the reserved pasta water. Add the cherry tomatoes and 1 1/2 cups of the cheese, season with salt and toss well. Transfer to a large, warmed pasta bowl and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Serve at once.

Cacio e Pepe with Butter and Broccoli Rabe

4 ounces unsalted butter, softened
1 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1 pound broccoli rabe, trimmed and chopped
1 pound dried spaghetti

Mash softened butter with cheese, black pepper, and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Roll butter in parchment; freeze until firm.

Cook broccoli rabe in a large pot of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a colander to drain. Add pasta to boiling water and cook until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water; drain pasta.

In a serving bowl, toss pasta with broccoli rabe. Using a box or hand grater, grate some compound butter over pasta and toss vigorously to coat. Season with salt and toss again. Serve immediately.

Mojito Chicken with Grapefruit

1 red grapefruit
1 lime
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons chopped mint
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs
2 tablespoons chopped red onion

Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Using a sharp knife, peel the grapefruit and lime, removing all of the bitter pith. Cut in between the membranes and release the sections onto a work surface. Squeeze the membranes over a medium bowl to extract the juices. Stir in half each of the olive oil, cilantro and mint and season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken and toss to coat.

Grill the chicken thighs over moderately high heat, turning them occasionally, until they are lightly charred outside and cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, coarsely chop the grapefruit and lime sections and transfer to a bowl. Add the red onion and the remaining olive oil, cilantro and mint. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the chicken thighs with the citrus salsa.

Classic Shrimp Scampi

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine or broth
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
1 3/4 pounds large or extra-large shrimp, shelled
1/3 cup chopped parsley
Freshly squeezed juice of half a lemon
Cooked pasta or crusty bread

In a large skillet, melt butter with olive oil. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add wine or broth, salt, red pepper flakes and plenty of black pepper and bring to a simmer. Let wine reduce by half, about 2 minutes.

Add shrimp and sauté until they just turn pink, 2 to 4 minutes depending upon their size. Stir in the parsley and lemon juice and serve over pasta or accompanied by crusty bread.

Crispy Stuffed Mushrooms with Harissa and Apricots

8 ounces cremini or button mushrooms
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
1 small red chile or jalapeño, seeded if desired and finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon harissa paste
1 teaspoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/3 cup, plus 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves and tender stems
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped dried apricots
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Freshly ground black pepper
Lemon wedges, for serving

Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Remove the mushroom stems from the caps and chop the stems.

Place a medium skillet over medium heat, then add 2 tablespoons olive oil and let it warm up until it thins out, about 20 seconds. Add mushroom stems, onion and chile and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic, harissa, tomato paste, salt and cumin seeds and cook until the tomato paste darkens and the garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add bread crumbs and 2 tablespoons olive oil to the skillet. Stirring constantly, cook bread crumbs until lightly toasted, about 4 to 6 minutes. Keep an eye on the pan as the bread crumbs can burn quickly. Remove from heat and immediately scrape bread-crumb mixture into medium mixing bowl. Stir in 1/3 cup Parmesan, cilantro, dried apricots and lemon zest, tossing well. Taste and season with black pepper and more salt if needed.

Place mushroom caps on a rimmed sheet pan, cavities facing up. Drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Using a spoon, stuff the oiled mushroom caps with the seasoned bread-crumb mixture.

Sprinkle remaining 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan on mushrooms. Bake until the tops are crisp and golden, 15 to 20 minutes. Serve hot or warm, with lemon wedges for squeezing.

Pressure Cooker Spiral-Cut Ham with Char Siu Glaze

4 lbs boneless spiral-sliced ham

Char siu glaze:
2 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
1 Tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp five-spice powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup brown sugar – packed, or more as needed
1/4 tsp salt

Prepare the glaze:

Mix all the ingredients for the glaze in a bowl. Stir to mix and set aside.

Prepare the ham:

Get 2 layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil, enough to cover and wrap the ham up entirely. Remove the ham from its packaging. Place the ham on the center of the foil and then shape the foil into bowl-like. Use your clean hands to gently separate the layers of sliced ham and then pour the glaze you prepare earlier, trying to get into each layer as much as you can.
Wrap the ham up with the foil, leaving no gap.

Pressure cook in Instant pot:

The ham is already cooked when you bought it. All we are doing is to heat it up and to make sure it stays moist. Pour in 1 cup of water into the inner pot of the instant pot. Place the trivet in. Carefully and gently transfer the foil-wrapped ham and place on top of the trivet, careful not to let the trivet puncture the foil (it happened to me before) and the liquid will leak out and the ham won’t be moist.

Secure the lid and turn the steam release valve to seal. Press “pressure cooker” and make sure it’s on “high pressure”. The cooking time should be 2 minutes for each pound of ham. Mine is close to 4 lbs so it should be 8 minutes, but we need to account for the fact that it is wrapped in 2 layers of heavy-duty foil to keep the ham moist during cooking, which means it takes longer to heat it through, so add another 10 minutes on top of that. So, in my case, the total cooking time is 18 minutes. The pressure cooker may take about 10 minutes or less to comes into pressure
When 18 minutes of cooking time has elapsed, wait 15 minutes. The pressure valve would have collapsed by then. Unlock the lid and then carefully lift the ham out from the cooker. Then carefully unwrap the foil. Check the internal temperature to make sure it has come to between 135-140 F. If it’s not, wrap it back up and pressure cook on high for another 3-5 minutes
There should be some cooking juice collected inside the foil. Very carefully transfer the ham out to a platter. Save the juice.

Prepare the glaze:

Pour the liquid out from the inner pot of Instant Pot. Pour in the juice from cooking the ham back into the inner pot. Press saute and bring it to a boil. Have a taste. Is the sauce sweet enough for you or not. You can always adjust the taste by adding more brown sugar. Cook until the sauce has slightly reduced and thickened slightly, may take about 3-5 minutes. The glaze will thicken as the sugar caramelized. Don’t reduce the sauce too much because they thicken further once it cools down. If it gets too thick, you can always add a bit of warm water to thin down the consistency a bit, especially if you plan to serve the extra glaze on the side.

Glaze the ham:

Brush some of the glaze on top of the ham and in between slices. Reserve some of the glaze to serve on the side.

Broil the ham (optional):

I didn’t do this, but if you want a more caramelized glazed ham, place the ham on top of a baking sheet lined with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Broil the ham on high for 2-3 minutes or until you are happy with the caramelization.

Serve:

Slice the ham, which shouldn’t be hard, since it is already pre-sliced halfway and you just need to cut it all the way. Serve with the extra glaze on the side.

Cumin-Lime Shrimp with Ginger

1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined (16 to 20 shrimp)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons grated ginger
1 teaspoon grated garlic
Pinch of red-pepper flakes (optional)
1/4 cup lime juice
1 teaspoon lime zest
3 tablespoons roughly chopped cilantro
Flaky salt

In a large bowl, toss together the shrimp and the cumin until well coated. Season with kosher salt and toss again.

Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add half the shrimp to the pan in one layer and cook undisturbed until they just start turning pink, about 1 minute. Flip and cook for about 1 minute more, then remove from the pan and set aside. They may not be fully cooked at this time, and that’s O.K. Repeat with remaining shrimp and leave in the pan.

Add the reserved shrimp back to the pan with any juices that have accumulated. Stir in the ginger, garlic and red-pepper flakes, if using, and cook for about 30 seconds, stirring to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add the lime juice to pan and scrape up any brown bits that have formed at the bottom of the pan. Cook until the mixture is reduced by about half, about 1 minute more. Stir in the lime zest and scatter with the cilantro. Season with flaky salt, if desired.

Hazelnut-Crusted Chicken with Arugula and Fennel Salad

1/2 cup hazelnuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
4 5- to 6-ounce chicken breast cutlets, pounded to an even ¼-inch thickness
1/2 cup fresh tarragon leaves, chopped, divided
1/3 cup grapeseed or other neutral oil
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 5-ounce container (6 cups) baby arugula
1/2 medium fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 medium shallot, halved and thinly sliced
1 lemon, cut into wedges

In a wide, shallow dish, stir together the hazelnuts, panko and 1½ teaspoons salt. Season the cutlets on both sides with salt and pepper, then sprinkle with 3 tablespoons of the tarragon, pressing it into the chicken to adhere.

One at a time, add the cutlets to the hazelnut-panko mixture, pressing into the mixture and coating both sides. Place the cutlets on a large plate.

In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high, heat the grapeseed oil until shimmering.

Add the cutlets in a single layer and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Flip the cutlets and cook until the second sides are golden, about another 2 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate.

In a large bowl, whisk the olive oil, vinegar, remaining tarragon, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Add the arugula, fennel and shallot, then toss. Serve the cutlets with the salad and lemon wedges on the side.

Slow Cooker Pasta Fagioli

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound Italian sausage, casing removed
1 medium sweet onion, diced
4 cups chicken stock
1 (16-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

3/4 cup ditalini pasta
1/2 cup shaved Parmesan
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add sausage and onion, and cook, stirring frequently, until sausage is browned, about 5-7 minutes, making sure to crumble the sausage as it cooks; drain excess fat.

Place sausage mixture into a 6-qt slow cooker. Stir in chicken stock, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, beans, carrots, celery, garlic, basil, oregano and thyme; season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Cover and cook on low heat for 7-8 hours or high heat for 5-6 hours. Uncover and stir in pasta; cover and cook on high heat for an additional 30 minutes, or until tender.

Serve immediately with Parmesan, garnished with parsley, if desired.

Curried Deviled Eggs

6 eggs
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Brooklyn Delhi Curry Mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt to taste
Brooklyn Delhi Guntur Sannam Hot Sauce
chopped chives or parsley

Put the eggs into a medium saucepan and add water to cover by 1 inch. Set the pan over high heat and bring the water to a boil. The moment it comes to a full boil, turn off the heat, cover the pot and set a timer for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare a large bowl of ice water.

When the timer rings, transfer the eggs to the ice water. Once the eggs are cool enough to handle, peel them. If you are having trouble peeling them cleanly (it happens, especially if your eggs are very fresh), place them, one at a time, in a clean jelly jar with about 3 tbsp water, screw on the lid tightly, and shake the jar like mad. The shell should come off much more easily.

Cut each egg in half lengthwise, carefully remove the yolks from the whites, and reserve the whites. Put the yolks into a food processor, add the mayonnaise, the Curry Mustard, the lemon juice, Guntur Sannam Hot Sauce and salt and puree until smooth. (You can instead do this in a bowl with a fork but it won’t be quite as smooth.) Season to taste with a bit of more salt if needed.

Use a small spoon to fill the egg whites with the yolk mixture. Sprinkle with the chives and serve immediately.

Crispy Potatoes with Spicy Yogurt Dip

2 pounds potatoes, red or Yukon
1/2 cup olive oil
Fresh mint and dill, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup lebne or thick yogurt
1/3 cup Brooklyn Delhi Curry Mustard
Brooklyn Delhi Guntur Sannam Hot Sauce

Preheat the oven to 400º F and line a baking sheet with foil. Place potatoes in a large pot with cold water and a hearty amount of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes after the water is boiling. Drain and let the potatoes rest for about 10 minutes to dry and cool slightly.

In a large bowl, add the olive oil. On a cutting board, smash each potato one at a time. Put the potatoes in the bowl with oil, season generously with salt and pepper, then toss together combine. Spread the potatoes and oil out on the prepared sheet pan and roast for at least 30 minutes, or until crispy on both sides.

While the potatoes are roasting, whisk together the lebne and Curry Mustard. Drip on generous amounts of Guntur Sannam Hot Sauce. Sprinkle the yogurt with some of the mint and dill. Once potatoes are fork tender, remove from the oven, sprinkle with the remaining fresh herbs and serve hot!

Mango Chutney, Goat Cheese & Jalapeno Pastries

Brooklyn Delhi Mango Chutney
Puff pastry sheets, unthawed
Goat Cheese
1-2 Jalapeno peppers

Preheat the oven to 400F. Roll out the puff pastry sheets and cut into equal squares. Cut a small amount of the goat cheese and place in the center of the square. Top with a dollop of mango chutney.

Fold the puff pastry in whatever shape you like, top with jalapeños and brush with milk (whole or almond. Put on sheet pans and bake in the oven for 20 mins and serve hot!

Coconut Katsu Chicken

2 boneless chicken breasts pounded to 1/2 inch thickness
1/4 cup flour
2 eggs beaten
2 cups coconut panko
Oil for frying

Put flour, eggs, and panko in three separate bowls.

Coat each chicken breast with flour, then egg, then panko.

Deep fry in 350 degree oil until golden and internal temperature is at least 165.

Grilled Lemongrass Pork Chops

3 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped (1 tablespoon)
2 tablespoons of coarsely chopped shallot, or 3 tablespoons of coarsely chopped yellow onion
1/4 cup of coarsely chopped fresh lemongrass (from 2 medium stalks; tough outer layer discarded)
2 tablespoons of light or dark brown sugar
Rounded 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons of canola or other neutrally flavored oil
1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons of fish sauce
1 1/4 teaspoons of soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon of molasses or dark amber honey
4 thin-cut, bone-in pork chops (6 ounces each), about 1/2 inch thick
1/2 cup of nuoc cham dipping sauce (optional; see note)

Combine the garlic, shallot or onion, lemongrass, brown sugar and pepper in a mini food processor; process to a fine texture. Add the canola oil, fish sauce, soy sauce and molasses or honey; process until relatively smooth, to form a wet paste. This is your marinade; transfer to a mixing bowl.

Use paper towels to blot excess moisture from the pork. Add the pork to the marinade, turning to coat well, then cover and marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes. Or, refrigerate for up to 24 hours; let the meat sit out at room temperature for 30 minutes before grilling.

Heat a cast-iron stovetop grill pan over medium-high heat. Remove the chops, discarding any leftover marinade. Do not wipe off the meat.

Add the pork chops to the pan; cook for 5 to 7 minutes, turning frequently, until firm and cooked through. To check doneness, pierce with the tip of a sharp knife; it’s okay if the center is faintly pink. Transfer them to a plate to rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve the chops warm, passing the dipping sauce at the table, if desired.

VARIATION: To make the marinade without a food processor, mince the garlic and shallot, transfer to a large bowl, then mix with 3 tablespoons grated or minced lemongrass (or store-bought lemongrass paste) and the remaining ingredients.

NOTE: To make the dipping sauce, combine 1 tablespoon sugar (or 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons maple syrup), 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice and 1/4 cup warm water in a medium bowl. Taste, and, as needed, add 3/4 teaspoon sugar (or 1 1/2 teaspoons maple syrup) and/or 1 1/2 teaspoons lime juice; dilute with water if you go too far. If there’s an unpleasant tart-bitter edge, add 2 teaspoons of plain rice vinegar to fix the flavor. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons fish sauce, aiming for a bold, forward finish that’s a little gutsy. If you want heat, add 1 thinly sliced Thai or serrano chile, or 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons chile garlic sauce or sambal oelek; for pungency, add 1 small minced garlic clove. The yield is 1/2 to 2/3 cup.