Friday, April 1, 2011

Sauteed Pork Chops with Pears and Blue Cheese

I have been in hot pursuit of flavorful meals that are good enough for company, but quick enough for a weekday meal.  America's Test Kitchen's new cookbook, The Best Simple Recipes, has been on my kitchen counter calling out to me, just ready to be tested.  I recently reviewed the cookbook and instantly picked Sauteed Pork Chops with Pears and Blue Cheese as my first recipe to try.  True to the title of the cookbook, it was a breeze to cook and was delicious to boot.  From start to finish, our meal was ready in well under 30 minutes, but with all the flavor of a meal that takes twice as long.  That's a win-win--a satisfied family and we have the time we need to get to all of our family's after school activities.

I used boneless pork chops, solely because they were on sale.  The cooking times were slightly less with boneless chops and the end result would be slightly less flavorful, but even without the bone, they were a hit with my family.   The original recipe called for one pear, which I didn't feel like would be enough when split between five people.  So I used two pears and doubled the ingredients for the sauce, but my family began asking for seconds of pears almost immediately--seconds that I didn't have.  In hindsight, at least one half pear per person would have been more accurate; however, I would not increase the sauce even with more pears.  You can see in the second picture below, there would be ample space for additional pears without crowding the saute pan, but more than enough sauce.  If blue cheese is not for you, try Gorgonzola instead.

Also, I have a fabulous giveaway going on now until April 7th for an America's Test Kitchen cookbook;  you will find the link here.  You will not find any gimmicks there; it's simply a free cookbook.
Sauteed Pork Chops with Pears and Blue Cheese
Printer Friendly Recipe

4 bone-in or center-cut pork chops (8 to 10 ounces each), 3/4 to 1-inch thick
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
2 firm pears, cored and cut into wedges
2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese

1.  Pat chops dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.  Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking.  Cook chops until well browned and meat registers 145 degrees, about 5 minutes per side.  Transfer to platter and tent with foil.

2.  Toss pears with sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in bowl.  Add pear slices, cut side down, to empty skillet and cook until golden and beginning to soften, 1 to 2 minutes per side.  Add broth and simmer until pears are softened, about 2 minutes.  Transfer to platter with pork.

3.  Continue to cook until sauce is slightly thickened, 2-4 minutes.  Off heat, stir in butter and vinegar.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Spoon sauce over pears and chops.  Top with cheese.  Serve.

Recipe from The Best Simple Recipes.

This recipes is linked to Fat Camp Fridays, Foodie Friday, I'm Lovin' It, and Friday Favorites.


Four For France said...

I made this for dinner last night. What a perfect combination of flavors! And so,so,so easy! This will become a "regular" in our home. Thanks for sharing it.

Mamahollioni said...

Jen--I would agree...super easy and so flavorful. It's going to be a regular for us as well.