Tuesday, August 2, 2011

CSA member submitted recipes: Pesto-stuffed pork chops


CSA member Jen sent along this fantastic recipe for pork chops. Each component of the recipe - the stuffing, the spice rub, the light brush of balsamic vinegar - was delicious and would make an amazing stand-alone cooking method but when all those flavors melded together the results were pure yum!

Pesto-Stuffed Pork Chops
Prep: 30 min Bake: 30 mins
Oven:  375 degrees  Makes 4 servings

3 tablespoons of crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons pesto
1 tablespoon pine nuts
4 pork loin chops or boneless pork loin chops
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1.  For filling, stir together cheese, pesto, and nuts.  Set aside.  Trim fat from meat.  Make a pocket in each chop by cutting horizontally from the fat side almost to the bone or the opposite side.  Divide filling among pockets in chops.  If necessary, secure the opening with a wooden toothpick.
2.  For rub, in a small bowl combine black pepper, oregano, garlic, red pepper, and thyme.  Rub evenly onto all sides of meat.  Place chops on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.  Bake at 375 degree oven for 30-40 minutes or until done (160 degrees)  and juices run clear.  Brush vinegar onto chops during the last 5 minutes of baking.  Before serving discard toothpicks. 

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