When I think of fall cooking, apples and pork often come to mind. This easy, healthy-yet-hearty single skillet dish combines the two deliciously – and the cooking time – it’s just 15 minutes! The original recipe for this dish was kindly sent to me by a chef colleague of mine, and while I enjoyed it, big flavor-lover me wanted just a little bit more…something. After a couple tries, I hit the mark when I added a touch of Dijon and a wee bit of butter to the tasty sauce that coats the pork and apples.
To keep this recipe weeknight friendly, I opt for thin cut boneless pork chops to hasten the cooking time. Apple juice adds extra apple-licious flavor to the sauce and keeps them moist. If you don’t want to buy a large container of juice, check the refrigerator case of your market. Many sell individual serving size bottles or cans of apple juice there (if not on the juice aisle).
I like to serve this dish with noodles and a warm cabbage slaw that I make by sautéing shredded green cabbage with a smidgeon of olive oil and then seasoning it with butter, salt and dried dill and/or celery seeds. My trick for soft silky cooked cabbage is to sauté the cabbage for 3 to 4 minutes with about a teaspoon of oil and then to add a tablespoon of water to the pan, cover it, and let the cabbage steam for a minute or two before continuing to sauté it for a few more minutes with a smidgeon of butter and the other seasonings.
MAKES 4 SERVINGS
4 (5-ounce) thin cut boneless pork chops
1 teaspoon dried sage leaves (thyme can be substituted if you don’t have sage)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 medium apples, peeled, cored, and each cut into 8 wedges
2 teaspoons butter
2 tablespoons minced shallot (or finely chopped onion)
1 cup regular or light apple juice
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1. Pat the pork chops dry with paper towels and evenly sprinkle with the sage, salt, and pepper. Spray a large non-stick skillet with cooking spray and place over medium high heat. Add chops and cook for 2 minutes per side, or until lightly browned. Remove chops from skillet, place on a plate, and set aside.
2. Add the apples and butter to the skillet. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes or until apples are lightly browned. Add shallot and cook for 2 minutes, or until softened. In a medium bowl, whisk together apple juice, flour, and mustard. Pour into the skillet and bring to a simmer.
3. Return the chops to the skillet, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 3 minutes. Turn chops and cook until sauce is slightly thickened. Transfer the chops to a platter, top with apples and sauce and serve.
Nutrition Information Per Serving: Calories 270 | Carbohydrate 16g (Sugars 12g) | Total Fat 8g (Sat Fat 4g) | Protein 31g | Fiber 1g | Cholesterol 85mg | Sodium 380mg | Food Exchanges: 4 Lean Meat, 1 Fruit | Carbohydrate Choices: 1 | Weight Watcher Plus Point Comparison: 6 Smart Points 6
Note: With just 1/4 cup of apple juice per serving, the recipe was analyzed with regular apple juice.