Question: Why does sophisticated food always have to be complicated? Answer: Trick question; it doesn’t.
Case in point, these pork chops. You quickly sear the chops up, and finish by making a rich creamy leek pan sauce in the same skillet you used to brown the chops in. The seared chops then finish cooking in the sauce, and you have a one-dish meal that you might be please to have served up to you at a restaurant.
If you don’t have fresh rosemary or thyme, use half the dried amount of each, it will all be fine. And if there is a border of fat on the chops, use a knife to score it (cut vertical lines across the sides of the fat, without cutting into the meat itself) so that the chops stay nice and flat as they cook. (This little ridge of fat is one of Charlie’s favorite nibbles in the world – each to his own.)
When you sear meat, try to avoid moving it around and flipping it frequently, which prevents that great caramelized crust from forming. Peek when you need to, but don’t keep fussing around with it.
Madeira is a slightly sweet fortified wine that keeps for months once opened, so don’t worry if you don’t have the ability to use up the bottle right away.
Notice how the copious amount of leeks in the sauce become their very own little side vegetable. I could eat a pile of sautéed leeks all day long. Serve this with mashed potatoes, rice, or a grain salad, and a fluffy pile of lettuce dressed with a punchy vinaigrette to play off the creamy sauce.
Other Pork Chops Recipes:
- Pork Chops with Italian Salsa Verde
- One Skillet Creamy Mustard Pork Chops
- Pork Chops with Apples and Black Eyed Pea Salad
- Pan Seared Pork Chops with Marsala and Mushroom Cream Sauce
Pan Seared Pork Chops with Madeira and Leek Cream Sauce
- 4 large bone-in 1-inch thick pork chops about 3 pounds total
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 shallots minced
- 1 cup sliced leeks white and light green parts only
- ¼ cup Madeira wine
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves
- 1 cup chicken broth
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- Hot cooked mashed potatoes rice, quinoa, or other grains to serve
- Chopped freshly parsley to garnish, optional
- Bring the pork chops to room temperature and season generously with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a small pan over medium-high heat and sear the chops without moving them until browned on both sides, about 3 minutes on each side (they will not be fully cooked, but still pink in the middle). Transfer the pork chops to a plate, and tent with foil to keep warm.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low, and add the shallots and leeks to the pan. Sauté for 10 minutes until they are tender and golden brown. Turn the heat back up to medium-high, add the Madeira, thyme and rosemary, and scrape to release any bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken broth and cream and bring to a simmer, then return the pork chops to the pan, nestling them into the sauce amongst the leeks, and continue to simmer until the pork is just cooked through, with a hint of pink in the middle, to an internal temperature of 145°F, about 3 more minutes. The sauce will have reduced and thickened a bit.
- Let the chops sit in the sauce for a couple of minutes off of the heat. Serve the chops with the cooked grains, with the leek sauce ladled over the top of the pork. Finish with a sprinkle of parsley, if desired.
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