My variation on the traditional: Pork Cordon Bleu. This recipe uses a thin pounded pork loin slice in a roulade around a slice of Black Forest Ham and a chunk of Swiss cheese, breaded and pan-fried. It’s simple to do, super elegant in presentation and so good!
Last year in February Mr. Saucy went on a fishing trip with his buddies; I used the occasion to entertain some girlfriends with dinner and a sleepover. One of the friends who attended is the person who inspired this variation on the classic Veal Cordon Bleu, or the more widely seen now Chicken Cordon Bleu.
My friend is one of the sweetest, kindest and most thoughtful women I’ve ever known. She also has some foods she doesn’t particularly care for eating; chicken is one of those foods. So, when I decided I would make Cordon Bleu for my dinner party, I knew I couldn’t use chicken (well, I could have – she’s very polite and will eat what’s put in front of her, but she’d prefer not). So, I thought I could use pork instead. It was fabulous!
Of course, since it was a dinner party, I didn’t take the time to photograph the dish for a post. Then, I kind of forgot about it altogether until a reader messaged me to ask if I had a recipe for Cordon Bleu. I told him that I hadn’t published one; that inspired me to make this dish again to get it on here.
Just like what I love, this recipe is not hard. It looks like it takes a lot of effort, but it doesn’t. That’s the ticket, right there.
I used pork loin chops, placed them between two pieces of parchment paper and pounded them flat (to about 1/4 inch), then placed a piece of black forest ham and a chunk of Swiss cheese and rolled them up. Secured with toothpicks to hold them in the roulade, I sprinkled on salt and ground black pepper, dusted them with flour, dipped them in egg and finally rolled them in panko crumbs seasoned with sage and thyme. The pork rolls are then pan-fried in a bit of butter until golden brown. I served them with a sage-flavored Béchamel sauce (a simple cream sauce). Done.
If you want to impress with a beautifully simple and elegant dish, try this Pork Cordon Bleu. Do!
- 1 pound center-cut pork loin chops (about ¼ pound each, so 4), pounded flat between two pieces of parchment paper (I use my rolling pin, but a heavy flat-bottomed skillet would work, too...or a meat mallet)
- 4 thin-cut slices of ham (I use Black Forest ham sliced in my local deli section of the market)
- 4 chunks Swish Cheese (I had the deli cut a chunk of Swiss from which II cut ½" sticks)
- salt and ground black pepper
- All-purpose flour for dredging
- 2 beaten eggs
- 1½ cups panko crumbs, seasoned with a pinch of ground sage and a pinch of dry thyme leaves
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons neutral oil (I used canola)
- For each of the flattened pork loin pieces, place a slice of ham and a piece of the Swiss cheese on top.
- From the longest side, roll the pork up, tucking in the ends so the bundle is secure.
- Using toothpicks, pin the pork bundle so it won't unroll.
- Sprinkle salt and ground black pepper on the outside of the pork bundle.
- Dredge the bundle in flour and shake off excess.
- Dip the bundle in the beaten, making sure all the surface is coated with egg.
- Now roll the bundle in the seasoned panko crumbs.
- In a large skillet, over medium heat, add the butter and oil.
- When the butter is melted and hot, add the bundles of pork and cook on each side until golden brown, carefully turning as each side browns About 3 minutes per side.
- Remove to a platter and serve with sage-flavored Béchamel sauce (recipe follows).
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1¼ cups half and half (or milk), heated
- ⅛ teaspoon ground sage
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt the butter.
- Add the flour and stir to combine with the butter.
- Cook, stirring constantly, until the paste cooks and bubbles, about 2 minutes.
- Add the warmed half and half and continuing to stir as the sauce thickens.
- Add the sage, salt and pepper to taste, lower the heat, and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes more. Remove from the heat.