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For those who want to spruce up pork chops...

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For those who want to spruce up pork chops...

Carb Lover | Jan 26, 2006 12:16 AM

I discovered a wonderful new-to-me way tonight! It was really delicious and was inspired by an episode of America's Test Kitchen. Not earth shattering but good homey food that brought new life to something so standard.

For the first time, I stuffed my thick center cut chops w/ a bread stuffing that I threw together based on what I had on hand...whole grain bread, onion, red bell pepper, garlic, arugula, dried cherries, fennel seed. I basically chopped everything and sauteed in some olive oil til softened, deglazed w/ white wine, and seasoned w/ S&P. It looked like turkey stuffing.

I didn't have time to cool it, so just stuffed it into the pork when still warm. Cut a 1" slit on the meaty side of the pork chop and then worked my paring knife to open up the insides w/o butterflying the whole chop. Ie, the initial incision was small (as seen in left picture), but I used it to open up much of the internal area so there was an ample "pocket" (as pictured on right). You must use your hands to push the stuffing inside.

Seasoned the whole chop w/ S&P. Seared in olive oil over medium heat til browned. Removed chops and then sauteed some sliced savoy cabbage til beginning to wilt. Seasoned w/ S & Penzeys aleppo pepper. Nestled chops back in, poured in some chicken broth, covered and simmered til done, about 15 min.

It was done alot sooner than I anticipated. I think the warm stuffing made it cook faster. When I checked at the 15 min. mark it was at 145F inside, which was a little higher than I was aiming for. Regardless, the meat wasn't dry and still pretty juicy. It was very flavorful, and the stuffing created a wonderful exchange of flavors w/ the meat.

For those looking to spruce up the humble pork chop, I highly recommend this w/ any customized stuffing. I really liked how the small incision means no sewing or trussing. Probably works best w/ a thick cut but regular might be ok if you don't overstuff or overcook. I also realize that I don't have to wait til T-giving again to eat stuffing!! (woo hoo!)

Image: http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y45/...

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