I have so many cookbooks and magazines. Like many foodies I love them all and can't part with any of them so my collection keeps growing. I do have a favorite source that I turn to more often than any other resource. I turn to it again and again, both for entertainment and knowledge, namely, my all-access-pass to Cook's Illustrated, Cook's Country, and America's Test Kitchen. I always have success with their recipes even if I'm making something for the first time. I also love how they explain why they recommend their methods and the science behind the results. My husband loves pork chops and my go to recipe up until this point has been my "Spicy Pork Loin Chops." The chops in this recipe are only 3/4 of an inch. I had some beautiful bone-in chops that were thicker. I turned to America's Test Kitchen and found their recipe for "Pan-Seared Thick-Cut Pork Chops." Here is my version.
Oven-Roasted Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Cilantro-Butter Pan Sauce
(adapted from Pan-Seared Thick-Cut Pork Chops from America's Test Kitchen)
4 (1"- 1 1/2") bone in pork chops
1/2 of a small to medium onion or 1 large shallot, minced
3/4 cup of chicken broth (I used homemade chicken stock)
1 tablespoon of butter (use a low fat or margarine if you want this to be South Beach Phase 1 friendly)
2 tablespoons of fresh chopped cilantro
1. If there is a thin layer of fat along the sides of the chops make a slice through the fat (in a couple of places) from the top of the chop to the bottom in order to keep the chop from buckling. Place the pork chops on a wire rack, salt the top side of the pork chops, and let them stand at room temperature for 30 - 45 minutes.
2. Pat them dry and sprinkle both sides with pepper.
3. Keep the pork chops on the wire rack and place the wire rack on a roasting pan. Place the pork chops in a 275 degree oven for 25 - 30 minutes or until the internal temperature is 120 degrees.
4. Heat about 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan until shimmering (you can pan sear the pork chops in 2 batches if necessary).
5. Sear the pork chops 2 minutes on each side to create some flavorful browning.
6. You can also sear the sides for a minute or two.
7. Set the chops aside covering them with foil to keep warm.
8. Pour off some of the olive oil keeping enough for the onions. Add the onions to the pan and stir frequently for 2 minutes.
9. Add the chicken broth to the pan, turn up the heat and scrap up any brown bits incorporating that flavor into the broth.
10. Simmer the pan sauce until it is reduced by about 1/3. Add butter to the sauce.
11. Add cilantro to the sauce.
12. Pour the sauce into a small bowl. Add the chops back to the pan and pour the sauce over the chops.
13. These chops go well with a side of refried beans.