Friday, April 2, 2010

honey-mustard pork chops

When we had our little Jolie, several people from our ward {church} brought us dinner. It was the kindest thing... and not too shabby in the tasty department. :) One couple in particular brought us something that absolutely Hit.The.Spot. They were breaded chicken tenders, but they had a kick of unexpected flavor that I couldn't identify but LOVED. Anyway, eventually I called them and asked for the recipe. It was an "equal parts of this and that and a splash of this other" sort of recipe- the kind I love, btw. And it worked pretty well. Somehow we couldn't get the chicken as tender nor the frying as down pat, but still- delish.

Then last night Derek and I were searching for a dinner idea and came across some pork loin chops in the freezer. I rarely cook with pork, mostly because I am not sure what to do with it, but I thought I'd give it a try. I searched through several of the foodie blogs I stalk, checked on, and looked through Rachael Ray's recipes. Rach {yep, we're that close} had a similar-to-the-Welling's recipe but with pork loin chops. I stole ideas from these two recipes and made up my own rendition. The results were pretty fabulous, if I do say so myself. Super tender, super tasty, and not too difficult to make. Feel free to try it with chicken breast or tenders, too. It's yum either way. Mmm... now where are those leftovers?

{Note: We didn't have thin-cut loin chops; we just had regular ones. The problem with regular ones is they're thick and require longer cooking- which could result in burned breadcrumbs or over-cooked-and-therefore-tough pork. We cut ours in half to make them thinner. It worked super great! But if you're buying the chops after seeing this recipe, ask your butcher for thin-cut boneless loin chops.}

RECIPE: Honey-Mustard Pork Chops

4 thin-cut boneless pork loin chops
1/3 c. honey
1/3 c. dijon mustard
3 tsp. vinegar
1 c. breadcrumbs
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
4-ish Tbsp. canola/vegetable oil

First, tenderize the loin chops. To do this, place the chops in a ziplock bag, press out extra air and seal. Then get a mallet and pound. Pound them until they are about 1cm thick.

In a small-medium bowl {I use a square tupperware dish}, mix honey, dijon mustard and vinegar until combined. On a large plate, dump out breadcrumbs and mix in the S&P. Dip each tenderized pork chop in the honey-mustard mixture, then in the breadcrumbs, coating well.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-heat. (You'll know the oil's ready when a wooden spoon pressed to the bottom results in little bubbles coming up around it.) Cook the now-breaded pork loin chops for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until they are golden brown.

Note: If you need to keep the chops warm while you wait for your side, etc., put them on a wire rack inside of a rimmed cookie sheet and into a 300F oven. This will keep them crisp.

Serve warm and enjoy!