Seared Pork Chops with Roasted Roots
By Emma Cerulli
A vibrant red with aromas of lush forest fruits, blackberries, cherries that leaves a taste of sour blackberries on the tongue.
The glacial winter months in Canada are a time for sipping red wine and enjoying laid back, rib-sticking dinners amongst family and friends. These thick-cut, top loin pork chops are seared until golden brown and served with a super-simple pan jus made with tangy pomegranates and honey. Serve these bejewelled, succulent chops with a side of roasted root vegetables, seasonally abundant at your local grocery store and enjoy a restaurant quality meal, quickly made at home. This decadent dish pairs beautifully with Domaine de Mermès, Colline d’Esprit, IGP Ardèche, 2020.
- 4 thick-cut, top loin, boneless pork chops, about 2 inches thick
- Sea salt
- Freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 c (500ml) pomegranate juice
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 c (500ml) chicken stock
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 lb (250g) pomegranate seeds
- 1 bunch Italian flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- 2 medium sized beets, peeled & cut into large wedges
- 4-6 small carrots, peeled & halved
- 1 lb (500g) button mushrooms, stems removed
- 5-6 baby potatoes or fingerling potatoes, halved
- 1 head garlic, halved
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp honey or maple syrup
- Sea salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Toss vegetables with olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme & honey and spread over baking sheet.
- Roast 30-35 mins until potatoes are golden brown and beets are cooked through.
- Rub pork chops with olive oil, generous amount of sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
- Press pork chops down onto heated skillet, making sure there is even surface contact.
- Sear 3 mins per side, or until dark golden brown. Sear sides of pork chops for 1 min to seal juices in.
- Remove pork chops from pan and set aside for later.
- While pan is still hot over medium-high heat, pour pomegranate juice and chicken stock into pan to deglaze. Drop in 2 whole sprigs of fresh thyme and crushed garlic clove.
- Scrape up brown bits left in pan with wooden spoon and bring to rapid simmer until liquid reduces by about half (5 mins).
- Place pork back into pan and carefully place skillet into oven.
- Cook until pork chops register at 145°F using a meat thermometer (5 -10 mins).
- Remove chops from pan and add 1 tbsp butter to pan and swirl around in hot pan sauce.
- Serve pork chops sliced or whole, drizzled with pan sauce and top with fresh pomegranate seeds and Italian flat-leaf parsley.
- Serve roasted vegetables piping hot alongside pork with the roasted garlic divided amongst 4 plates.
Emma Cerulli is a Montreal-based chef and Creative Director. Her passion for cooking began in her family kitchen and grew into a fulfilling and challenging career. Emma has worked in some of Montreal’s top kitchens.