Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Pork Chops with Herbes de Provence

This recipe is a favorite in my house. It’s very flavorful, and you don’t have to use any oil, which is a plus if you’re watching your fat intake. Pork is being bred pretty lean these days, so this is a nice change if you’re tired of eating chicken.

4 teaspoons Herbes de Provence.
4 boneless center cut pork chopped, 1/2-inch thick
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 2/3 cup dry white wine or water
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Press equal amounts of the Herbes de Provence into both sides of the chops. You can add more Herbes de Provence if you like; I usually just sprinkle the chops enough to lightly to cover both sides of the chops.
Sprinkle the salt in the bottom of a large, heavy pan (I use a cast iron skillet) and place over high heat. When a drop of water sizzles when dropped in the pan the pan is ready to use. Place the chops in the skillet and sear for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the chop is light golden brown. Turn the chops and sear the other side.
When both sides of the chops are seared, add the wine or water and deglaze the pan, scraping any browned bits from the bottom. Be careful when adding the liquid, as the pan will be very hot and you don’t want to get scalded by the steam. Add ground pepper and reduce hear to low. Cover with a tight fitting lid and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the chops are done. Be careful not to overcook the chops, as they will become rubbery.
Transfer the chops to a plate and cover with tinfoil. Increase the heat in the skillet to medium high and reduce the cooking liquid, stirring constantly until you have about 4 tablespoons. The liquid will be dark and intensely flavored. Pour the sauce over the chops and serve.
The chops can be served with mashed potatoes or Creamy Cauliflower Puree and Fresh Sautéed Green Beans, all of which compliment the flavor of the chops nicely.