|Leftovers - all the additions made a lovely sauce|
One apple, cored but not peeled, cut into large pieces
Four shallots, peeled, whole
One head of garlic, separated into cloves
Three tablespoons apricot nectar
Salt and pepper
Place the chops in a baking dish and scatter on the apple pieces, garlic cloves and shallots. Drizzle on a little olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake at 180 degrees for half an hour, turning the chops over once. Add the cherry tomatoes, pour on the apricot nectar, check and adjust the seasoning and return the dish to the oven for a further 15-20 minutes, until the tomatoes have collapsed and all the liquid has been absorbed. Serve with mashed potato and steamed runner beans.
I adore runner beans. I used to grow the variety Painted Lady, but I don't bother now - it doesn't "do" well here. Even in a normal summer, conditions are too dry for it to set seed. In France, runners (phaseolus coccineus to the botanist) are called "Haricot d'Espagne" and are mainly grown for their pretty red-and-white flowers. French beans, phaseolus vulgaris, are to be found in every potager.
|Moonlight in full flower with beans on their way|
|Firestorm (red) and Moonlight (white)|
This year I am trying "Firestorm", a red-flowered runner/french bean from the same stable as "Moonlight", but I am somewhat underwhelmed by its weak growth and yellowish leaves. It is not coping with the heat as well as "Moonlight", either, and I have had no beans from it yet, nor likely to in short order, whereas both patches of "Moonlight" and the climbing French beans "Cobra" and "Kew Blue" have both started to produce.
But for a widely available commercial bean, you can't beat "Moonlight".