27. September 2013 · 3 comments · Categories: Pork · Tags: , ,

This is a very colorful dish, and just as the leaves change their color at this time of the year, this dish will only enhance the changes. Very often if I have no clue what to cook for dinner I reach for recipes that I know have been tested and will work out for sure.  This recipe was taken from America’s Test Kitchen and I must say that no matter how goofy the leading chefs are, they know what they are talking about. So here is a pork dinner recipe that will always work.

Many times people don’t want to cook pork because it’s very easy to overcook it and dry it out. I can’t agree more and it took me several attempts until I figured out the secret. It’s all about the brine. The best solution is always to brine the night before you plan your dinner, but even 30 minutes of brining while you’re prepping all the ingredients will make quite a difference.

Serving: 2
Preparation: 30 minutes or 24 hour brining process
Preparation on the day of cooking: 15 minutes
Cooking : 40 minutes
Calories for one serving:  560
(without roasted potatoes)

1 cup of sugar
½ cup of salt
2 quarts/approx 2 liters of water
2 lean pork chops (6oz/170g each)

1 shallot, diced
1 large red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin stripes
1 large red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin stripes
1 spring of rosemary
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of canola oil
¾ cup of water
½ cup of white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
1 teaspoon of salt for seasoning
1 teaspoon of pepper for seasoning

For brining the pork chops in a large bowl dissolve sugar and salt in 2 quarts of water and add the chops. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, but overnight if possible.

Take out the chops from the brine and pat dry thoroughly with paper towels. Season with a teaspoon of salt and teaspoon of pepper and set aside.

Dice the shallots, mince the garlic and slice the peppers thinly and put all the vegetables aside.

Preheat the oven to 400F/200C and adjust the oven rack to middle position.

chops on the skilllet
Heat the canola oil on oven safe skillet over medium heat.  When the oil starts smoking, place the chops in the skillet and sear until well browned for about 4 minutes on each side.

pork and peppers
Transfer the chops to a larger plate and set them aside. The chops will be still raw and will continue cooking later in the oven. Use the same skillet in which you seared the chops and add some onion.  Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally until they are soft. Add peppers and rosemary and cook for another 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds just to get some garlic fragrance spread through the dish. Add water and vinegar and bring to boil. Scrape up all the brown bits from the pork. Simmer for 6-8 minutes on medium heat until the liquid evaporates by just over a half.

on skillet
Return the chops to the skillet and mix them with all the pepper, but do not cover the chops with peppers.  Add any juices that accumulated on the plate with chops.

Put the skillet into the oven and roast for about 15 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 140 degrees. I do recommend that you use the thermometer with any meat you fry or roast. I found it very helpful every time I cook whether using a recipe or not. Each oven is different and if a recipe gives 30 minutes it doesn’t have to mean that you will need exactly the same timing. I think it’s worth investing a little money to get a meat thermometer, and you will see that after you use it for the first time you will using every time when making dinner.
Remember that when you remove the skillet from the oven use a towel or a potholder in order not to burn your hand.

Transfer the chops to individual plates and add the 2 tablespoons of butter into the skillet and stir. If you really like vinegar you can stir in 1 more tablespoon at the end, but do taste the sauce first before adding it. Remove the spring of the rosemary and add some salt and pepper to your taste.

Serve immediately.

Roasted potatoes:
10-20 baby yellow and red potatoes
2 tablespoon of kosher salt
1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
2 rosemary sprigs
3 cloves of garlic (sliced)

Prepare the vegetables: Start with washing the potatoes. Pat them dry with a paper towel and put them in a heat proof roasting pan. Sprinkle the kosher salt all over the potatoes, add some sliced garlic, rosemary sprigs and olive oil. Toss them well until you can see that they are all covered with salt and olive oil. Warm up the oven to 200C/400F degrees and put the potatoes in for 30 minutes. Depending on the types of potatoes, it may take you 30 minutes or 40 minutes to roast them.  The skin should be crunchy but inside they will be nice and soft.


  1. These look really tasty and easy to make. Going to attempt for a dinner party in November. If I’m making 6 chops, should I triple the brine recipe, or will there be enough brine for the additional meat? Thanks!

    • No need to triple the brine but you definitelly need to triple the other ingredients. And remember to be careful with the vinegar. Start with less and you can always add more later. I have some friends who would just leave the room if they smell a single drop of vinegar :) Good luck and let me know how you liked them!

      • You said you have “friends” who would leave the room after smelling a drop of vinegar. Are you saying I’m not the only one out there with this aversion???? Or were you just trying to be nice? :)

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