September is my favorite month here in Sacramento. The garden is still producing plenty of tomatoes and chiles. The sweltering heat of the summer has moved on, leaving us shorter days, cooler nights, clear skies, and lovely breezes. The neighborhood kids are back to school, and our summer travels are over, but we haven’t yet succumbed to the frenzy of holiday planning. The first signs of the season are appearing in the market—butternut squash, apples, pears. This is a quick and easy pork chop recipe with skillet seared pork chops, served with a sweet and sour, gingery sauce with fresh pears. Perfect for the fall. Enjoy!
We used fairly thin, bone-in pork chops for this recipe. If you use thick chops, bring them to room temperature before you cook them.
- 4 pork chops
- 2 Tbsp canola or other vegetable oil
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup minced shallots
- 2 Tbsp minced ginger
- 1 large pear (anjou, bartlett, or bosc), peeled and diced
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 3 Tbsp cider vinegar
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
- Freshly ground black pepper
1 Salt the pork chops well and let them sit at room temperature while you chop all the vegetables and the pear. Make a few cuts in the outer fat layer of the pork chops, all the way through to the meat, to prevent them from curling up when you cook them. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until shimmering.
2 Working in batches as to not crowd the pan, when the oil is hot, pat the pork chops dry with paper towels and lay them in the pan. Sear the chops until nicely browned, about 3-5 minutes depending on how hot your burner is. Turn the pork chops over and sear on the other side for a minute or two. Then lower the heat and cook until done, 5 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the chops. Remember you no longer need to cook pork well done. The recommended minimum temperature for cooked pork is now 145°F in the U.S. (Use the finger test for meat if you don't have a meat thermometer.) When done, remove the pork chops from the pan to a plate to rest.
3 When the pork is done, remove all but 1 tablespoon of the oil from the pan. Add the butter, shallots and ginger and toss to combine. Cook this for 1 minute, then add the chopped pear and toss to combine. Cook another minute. Add the chicken stock, vinegar and honey and bring to a rolling boil. Boil vigorously until the liquid is reduced by 2/3, about 4-6 minutes. Turn off the heat and add the rosemary and some black pepper. Add salt to taste.
Serve the pork chops with the sauce on the side.