Pork a la Riviera

(Pork with Garlic and Balsamic Vinegar)

Author: Dave & Sandy
Serves ?


3/4 lb. boneless pork (center cut chops), in chunks 1/4  to 1/2 lb. small whole mushrooms, or larger mushrooms halved or quartered, or canned straw mushrooms
1 large bell pepper, or 1/2 red and 1/2 yellow pepper 1 Vidalia onion, or 4 small red onions
2 Tbs. flour 3 tsp. olive oil
6 to 15 cloves garlic, peeled and cut into chunks 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups fresh or canned chicken broth 1 bay leaf
1 tsp minced fresh thyme, or 1/2 tsp. dried 1 Tb. butter
salt and pepper to taste 2 lbs. Red Bliss potatoes with skins (optional)

If using potatoes, parboil for about 20 minutes until still firm.  Drain and dry on paper towels.  Cut into halves or quarters depending on size.
Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy skillet, and brown potatoes on both sides on medium-high heat.  Remove and set aside.
Rinse the mushrooms, drain, and pat dry.
Clean peppers and cut into chunks.
Season the flour with salt and pepper, and dredge pork chunks in the mixture (can use large plastic bag to shake the pork in flour).  Shake off the excess.
Heat additional 1/2 Tbs. oil in heavy skillet over medium-high heat, and cook the pork until nicely browned on one side, about three minutes.  Turn to brown other side, remove, and set aside.
Reduce heat to medium, add an additional tablespoon of olive oil, and add the garlic cloves.  Cook about two minutes, stirring to not over-brown.
Add the peppers and cook about 3 minutes.  Add the mushrooms, and cook an additional 3 minutes, shaking the skillet and redistributing the mushrooms so that they cook evenly.
Return the pork to the pan.  Cook about 2 minutes, and add the vinegar, broth, bay leaf, and thyme.
Cover tightly, and cook over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.  Turn the pork pieces occasionally as they cook.
Add the potatoes, and cook an additional 5 minutes.
Transfer the pork to a warm serving platter, and cover with foil.  Cook the sauce with the vegetables, uncovered, over medium-high heat for about 7 minutes to reduce.  Swirl in the butter.  Return the meat to the pot.
Discard the bay leaf, and serve.

Notes and Variations

Variation of Chicken a la Riviera.
We have made this with and without potatoes, and with and without onions.

Serve with rice, pasta, or couscous if potatoes are omitted.