Moch Lladrata

Makes 3 servings (serving a crowd?)

6 pork chops
6 hearty garlic dill pickles
3 lbs Kartoffelnsalat

Special equipment

an oven with a broiler — whoops


Make the Kartoffelnsalat the day before and refrigerate to let the flavours mingle.

Broil the pork chops, unseasoned, 6 minutes on the first side, and 5 on the reverse, depending on their distance from the flame. Serve with a full pound of the Kartoffelnsalat and two pickles.


Why pork chops? Chops seem to be the preferred meat in The Mabinogion, our reference tome for this event, our first full tavern. Unfortunately, from neither of our English translations could we determine whether lamb or pork was intended (nor may the original Welsh tell us, for all we know), so we took a cue from the story of “Math, Son of Mathonwy” where Gwydyon so loves pork, he steals Pryderi's swine, whence moch lladrata ‘stolen pork.’ Unseasoned chops broiled under a flame is a delicious change (ok, ok, so we didn't actually broil them because we forgot that the kitchen at our site — whoops — doesn't have a broiler; we grilled them on a large griddle) from breaded and pan-fried (and historically more accurate), pleasing even to those who don't usually like pork.

The classic accompaniment would be boiled buttered potatoes or turnips, mashed perhaps (the Welsh dish of Punch-nep is exactly that: equal quantities of the two roots boiled and mashed together with butter. See Hartley), but we thought we should try for something bolder of texture, taste, and color. A fresh green salad would be just about perfect, but a British salad is kind of like a sunny London day: a good idea, but it doesn't really exist. So we leapt across the Channel to the land of those other great eaters of pork, Germany, and borrowed their recipe for potato salad.

First served: Beltane 1993
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Last modified: © May 1993