I created this recipe back in January, the traditional time when people make resolutions to eat healthier following a holiday season filled with rich food. My philosophy has always been different — I live to eat, so I want to have great food all of the time. Resolve to ingest a diet of unsweetened yogurt and boiled quinoa for a month? Not me! Bring on flavorful decadent cuisine, just eat it in moderation throughout the year.
Pork is one of my favorite comfort foods, rich and succulent, with a bit of naughty fat for delicious flavor. Next week I’m once again heading back up to Fairbanks where Jeff, the owner of the HomeGrown Market, has the best Alaska grown pork in the entire state. I have dreams about his luscious pork chops … and this recipe – along with my new “Brined Pork Loin” recipe — is at the top of my current “must-cook” list.
Pork Chops with Cherry Sauce
2 (1-inch-thick) bone-in pork loin chops (fresh, Alaska-grown pork, if possible)
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, lightly crushed
3/4 teaspoon ground mustard
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons olive oil
For the cherry sauce:
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 medium shallot, finely chopped
1 cup fresh Bing cherries, pitted and halved
1/3 cup ruby port
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1) Heat the oven to 400°F and place a rack in the middle.
2) Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. When it shimmers, add shallot and season with salt. Cook until soft, about 3 minutes.
Stir in cherries, port, and vinegar and cook until cherries begin to soften and port has reduced by half, about 10 minutes.
3) While the sauce reduces, start cooking the pork chops. When the sauce is finished, remove from heat and set aside.
4) Rinse pork chops and pat dry with paper towels. Place salt, coriander, mustard, and pepper in a small bowl and mix until evenly combined. Rub all of the spice mixture on the pork chops.
5) Heat the oil in a large, oven-safe frying pan over medium-high heat. When it shimmers, add chops and cook on one side, undisturbed, until golden brown, about 4 minutes.
6) Flip chops and place the pan in the oven. Cook until chops are firm but not hard and an instant-read thermometer registers 160°F, about 11 minutes.
7) Place chops on warm plates and let rest 2 to 3 minutes. Spoon sauce over top and serve.
Recipe adapted from Chow.com