Pork chops and applesauce are a classic comfort-food combination. This is the time of year for it too, which good apples available and the chill in the air calling for deep, savory flavors.
This dish is adapted from two recipes. For cooking the chops, I’ve long relied on The Washington Post’s 1+1+4+4 recipe, which was published in 2003. It calls for thick boneless chops to be seared in a hot pan for 1 minute on each side, then covered and cooked low heat for 4 minute each side. Note that this recipe was written before the USDA lowered the safe cooking temperature of pork, so if you want something a little less done, perhaps try 1+1+3+4 or 1+1+3+3.
For the glaze, I turned to a recipe from the Eggs on Sunday blog. I wanted a glaze with maple and peppercorn, plus some vinegar to cut the sweetness. This produces a quick pan glaze with a nice rounded flavor.
Served alongside some simply dressed greens and homemade applesauce, this makes a great weeknight dinner.
Pork Chops with Maple-Peppercorn Glaze
Adapted from 1+1+4+4 Pork Chops, The Washington Post, and Maple Black-Pepper Pork Chops, Eggs on Sunday
2 tbsp. canola oil
2 boneless pork loin chops, about 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick
2 tbsp. minced red onion
2 tsp. dried thyme (or 1 tbsp. fresh thyme)
3 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp. fresh-ground black pepper
1. Heat canola oil in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat. Pat chops dry with paper towel and sprinkle with seasoned salt. Fry in pan for 1 minute, turn over and fry another 1 minute. Turn chops, lower heat to low, cover pan and cook for 4 minutes. Turn chops and cook another 4 minutes (this is for well done, reduce cooking time to 8 or 9 minutes total for medium chops). Set chops aside, leaving drippings and fond in pan.
2. Increase heat under pan to medium. Add onion and thyme and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add vinegar to deglaze pan, scraping pan with a spatula. Cook about a minute and then add the syrup and pepper. Continue cooking until the mixture has reduced by about half and thickened. Remove from heat and serve spooned over the cooked chops.