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back to basics: how to cook a pork chop
by Yee-Fan Sun|
1 2
continued from page 1

easy juicy sautéed pork chops
As is so often the case, I learned how to cook pork chops from Mark Bittman's terrific How to Cook Everything; this is essentially his recipe, with some added notes and modifications on my part.

2 pork chops, preferably about an inch thick
salt and freshly ground pepper
couple of tablespoons of olive oil
¼ cup of white wine
1 fat clove of garlic, or a couple of tablespoons of minced onion or shallot
½ cup of chicken or veggie stock (for small quantities of stock like this, a decent veggie bouillion powder works dandy, and saves you from having to figure out what to do with leftover stock)

optional but nice
pat of butter
squeeze of fresh lemon juice
sprinkling of fresh parsley

serves 2
time 20-30 minutes

1 Sprinkle your pork chops all over on both sides with salt and freshly ground pepper. Set aside.
2 Now heat up a good-sized, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When the skillet is nice and hot – this’ll take a few minutes – pour in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Let the oil heat up until you see a few wisps of smoke. Slide in the pork chops, nudge the heat up a little higher, and let cook for a minute or two, until the bottom is browned. Flip and brown the other side as well.
3 Lower the heat to medium and pour in the wine and the garlic (or onion/shallot). Stir it all around for a few minutes, flipping the pork chop after a minute or so, until the wine is mostly cooked off. Now pour in the stock, bring the heat down to medium-low, and cover.
4 Let the pork chops cook in the liquid for about 10-15 minutes, turning the chops about halfway through that time. Listen to the chops as they cook too; if there’s a lot of noise and sputtering going on in the pan, you might have to lower your heat a bit more.
5 When the chops are done, remove them from the pan and set aside on plates; tent with foil to keep warm. Properly cooked chops will feel fairly firm when you poke at them; stick the tip of the knife into the center and the juices should run clear or slightly pink, but not bloody. If the chops pass the first two tests, make a cut through and the meat should have a bit of pink color that quickly turns to white. Do your best not to overcook.
6 You should have some nice pan juices leftover; if not, add a smidge more stock to the skillet. Scrape up any pork bits that have stuck to the bottom of the pan and let the juices cook down for a couple of minutes. Stir in the optional butter, lemon juice and parsley and turn off the heat. Pour the pan juices over the pork chops, and enjoy!

Pork chops are, of course, very nice when served with the classic applesauce accompaniment. If you’re feeling up to it, just chop up an apple and cook it over medium-low heat with a little bit of water, covered, until it’s nice and soft. Squash it up, leaving a few chunks. Add white or brown sugar to taste if you like, along with a squeeze of fresh lemon. Since part of the appeal of pork chops, though, is that they’re a pretty no-fuss quickie meal, you can, of course, also use readymade apple sauce if you’re feeling lazy; the straightforward, no sugar added sort is generally best.


check out these related articles:
this little piggie an illustrated guide to pork cuts | roast chicken? yes please! | what to do with a whole chicken

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