I love Piccata dishes, no doubt about that. I love the lemon, the wine and most of all the briny Capers. If I had things my way, I’d put Capers on everything. Okay, maybe not everything. I’d have to pass on Caper Pancakes.
Pork – the other white meat. We sure do love our pork – especially chops and roasts. I’m always on the lookout for new ways to serve up pork chops. Some of my favorite recipes have got to be Pork Chops with Country Gravy or moist Italian Breaded Pork Chops. As a kid, it seemed we had our pork chops one of two ways – either barbecued or Filipino-Adobo Style. Now that I’ve been puttering about in the kitchen more years than I care to admit, I adore pork chops just about any way you can think of – from the smokey pleasures of the American-Grilled to the exotic flavors of the Orient.
These yummy, sweet yet sassy center cut chops are no exception. The sweetness of the apple and the sassy bite of the onion make a winning combination. Couple this with the brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg and everything melds so beautifully. Given the sweet, fruity flavor of the chops, this dish is best served with an equally flavorful side dish such as rice pilaf. A green vegetable such as Buttery Garlic-Herb Broccoli or Haricots verts à l’étouffée (Stewed Green Beans) will round out the plate beautifully.
All I can say is get ready for some impressively good eats!
Caramelized Apple-Onion Pork Chops
6 center cut pork chops, 3/4″ thick
4 Honeycrisp apples
1/2 white onion
4 Tbsp brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon. ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon. ground nutmeg
1/4 cup butter
Sea Salt to taste
Fresh ground black Pepper to taste
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Peel, core and slice apples into wedges. Set aside.
Peel onion. Cut in half. From half the onion cut slivers about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide. Toss with apples and set aside.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat.
Lightly rub pork chops with olive oil and then generously season both sides with salt and pepper. Place pork chops in the hot pan and get a nice sear on both sides, about 3 or 4 minutes per side. While chops are browning, in a small bowl combine brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Set aside until ready to use.
Place seared pork chops in a 13″×9″ baking dish. Set aside. To the now empty skillet, melt butter. Once the butter begins to foam, add brown sugar mixture. Stir constantly until brown sugar melts into the butter. Add apple and onion mixture. Heat over medium heat. Spoon brown sugar sauce over apples and continue to cook, stirring every few minutes, until apples and onions have softened.
Pour apple mixture with brown sugar over pork chops. Spread evenly until all the chops are covered. Cover baking dish tightly with foil. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, remove foil and continue to bake for about 10 minutes longer or until pork is tender and cooked through.
To serve, place pork chops on individual plates. Top with some of the apples and onions, then drizzle sauce over everything.
Serve with Rice Pilaf and green beans for a wonderful supper.
On the meal planner was a recipe I picked up from Mary over at Bare Feet in the Kitchen. Mary promised a recipe that was quick and delicious. I’ve seen a lot of recipes that claim to be “quick”, but by the time all the chopping, prepping and preheating is done, not to mention the additional cooking time it seems to take, quick might not be as quick as they claim.
Have I mentioned that I like to collect cookbooks? I’ve lost count of how many books are now in my collection. For a while, it was new books (as in new at the time), and later became an obsession with old cookbooks. With very good reason.
You know you have a hit on your hands when there are no leftovers. And such was the case from the very first time I served up these sweet-salty pork chops to my hungry family. They are super yummy to eat and fairly easy to make. Okay, so it does take about 45 minutes from prep to table, which might not be “quick” enough for a weekday meal after a long day’s work. If you don’t mind the wait, this dish is positively delicious.
The prep work is simply, just a little chopping and a little mixing. Most of the ingredients you probably already have in the cupboard anyway, so no special trip to the market scouring the aisles for “special” fixings. The sauce is wonderful – a little sweet, a little salty, a little different. It goes well spooned over the steamed rice. The first time I made this dish, I will admit I was a bit hesitant – pineapple over rice? Golden Mushroom Soup and Soy and Honey all mixed together? Just to be on the safe side, I served the rice on the side and the sauce in a gravy boat. One bite and all caution flew right out the window. From that night forward, the chops went into a rimmed serving platter, surrounded by a ring of sticky-steamed rice and the sauce was generously poured over the chops, seeping into the rice while leaving plenty of sauce in the platter to add as desired. Time after time, there are no left-overs to fret about. If anything, there may be a race between my guys to see who can snatch up the last chop on the platter. Kiddo, raised to respect his elders, always lets Hubby grab the last chop. Besides, he knows that Hubby will split the chop in half, and they take an equal last serving.
Just a quick note before we get down to cooking – when a recipe calls for canned pineapple, I always use Dole. Maybe that’s because it’s what I grew up with, but I like the look of their canned pineapple over the bargain brands. Whatever your favorite, please feel free to use.
Polynesian Pineapple Pork Chops over Sticky Rice
Ingredients – Steamed Rice
1 1/2 Cups White Rice, uncooked
Steam rice according to rice manufacturer’s directions. While rice is steaming, make pork chops.
Ingredients – Polynesian Pork Chops
8 Pork Chops, boneless, thin cut
1 teaspoon garlic powder
salt & pepper to taste
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 Large Shallot, chopped
1 Can Condensed Golden Mushroom Soup
1/4 Cup water
20 oz Pineapple Rings with juice
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
3 green onions, sliced
Season pork chops with garlic powder, salt and pepper, set aside until ready to use.
Remove four pineapple rings from the 20 ounce can, set aside for garnish. Chop remaining pineapples into chunks.
In a bowl, combine soup, water, pineapple chunks with juice, soy sauce, onions and honey. Set aside until ready to use.
Heat oil in skillet until shimmering but not smoking. Sear pork chops, about 1-2 minutes per side.
Reduce heat to medium and pour soup mixture over pork. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 20 minutes or until done.
Uncover pork chops, increase heat to medium and allow sauce to thicken a little, about 10 minutes longer.
While sauce is thickening, slice green onions for garnish.
Mound cooked rice around outer edge of a large, rimmed serving platter. Transfer pork chops to the center of the ring, stacking as necessary. Spoon sauce over chops. Sprinkle with green onions.
Cut remaining four pineapple rings in half. Place rings on top of rice for garnish and serve.