My skills have improved thanks to practice, food TV, and a few food blogs. Braising is one of the skills I've developed. It uses time and low heat to turn tough inexpensive cuts into tender meals. Braising is still easy and cheap. It's relatively fast to prepare too. The long slow cooking requires no effort on the cook's part. And one pot meals are easy to clean up.
Recipe #45 - Braised Pork SteakBrown the pork steaks in a large (3 qt) saute pan of dutch oven. When browned remove meat and add chopped onion. Stir to soften, scrape brown bits from the bottom. These add a lot of flavor and color. Finish scraping by adding liquid to the pan. Braising liquid can be bouillon, stock, apple juice, wine, or even water. I used about a half cup of wine and a half cup of water.
with Acorn Squash
1 or 2 pork steaks 1-1½ lbs. (blade or shoulder cut)
1 acorn squash* (substitute any winter squash or root vegetables)
1 apple chopped
1 medium onion chopped
1 cup braising liquid
salt, pepper, spices (try garam masala for an Indian flavor)
Return the meat to the pan. On top of the meat add chunks of peeled squash, sweet potatoes, or any combination of root vegetable you favor. Season with your favorite spice. Cover the pot. Reduce the heat to simmer and let the pot cook about an hour, until vegetables are fork tender.
See also: Braised Chicken