I get accused from time to time of using weird ingredients or pairing strange combinations. (Wait til next week when we use Yuzu.)
But I saw some gorgeous chops at the store (and had jarred peaches in the fridge that were given to me), so this is what I put together, and I’m happy I did.
When I presented a friend with this dish, the first thing they said was “Um, interesting mix of things.” But more than any other protein, pork lends itself well to flavors that lean on the sweeter side - think pulled pork or sticky BBQ ribs.
2 large pork chops, ~1.5 inches thick
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons Walnut or Macadamia Oil
6 jarred peach halves
1/2 cup pecan halves
1 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/4 cup Port
Season the chops with salt and pepper. Reserve.
Place peach halves cut side down on paper towels to dry them out a little.
In a skillet over medium-high, heat oil.
Add pork chops and cook for roughly 5 minutes.
Turn chops over, add pecans and peaches. Cook for 3 minutes. These times are based on the size chop I had. You will want to adjust up or down based on the thickness and how you like your pork cooked. It will also cook in the first 3 minutes that it rests.
Check the temp on your chops. You’ll want them to be at least 145 degrees (See forked pork picture), but not much more! My mother, renowned for her horrific culinary crimes, (Doctor, am I compensating?), worried about “trichinosis,” and insisted on thoroughly killing an animal that was already dead. Perhaps that fear was warranted at one time, but not now.
Remove the chops to a plate and let them rest.
Add the sage and pepper, syrup and Port. Stir gently. Add the port gently or you’ll have a flambe’. Common cooking sense says turn off the heat before you add alcohol, which I begrudgingly admit I never do.
The port will reduce quickly, so watch carefully.
In a minute or so, turn the heat off and pour the content over the chops carefully.
There’s Port in this dish and I think a light Pinot would be lovely with it, but I served it with Le Pre Vaujour Sancerre.
I’ve never been much of a