There’s a restaurant called The Pig, self-dubbed the Nose to Tail restaurant, here in D.C. – and all their menu items feature – you guessed it – pork products.
Garden salad? House-made bacon bits.
Burger? That’s going to be ground pork. Yum. Pork chop? That’s wrapped in bacon for some double pig action.
Order a Bloody Mary? You’re getting a strip of bacon in that.
These are just examples, and the only one I can attest to being true is the bacon Bloody Mary, but you get the point.
I don’t buy or cook pork chops regularly. I actually totally forgot about pork chops.
But during a routine trip to the butcher counter to leer at the meats, my eyes settled on a very thick, bone-in slab of pork. It was love at first sight at the butcher counter.
I love strong, woody herbs and garlic with pork, but I wanted some to add an unexpected, punchy element. Enter horseradish.
Pork chops want to be crunchy and seared so juices lock in, just like steak – so achieving that is priority number one.
The sauce starts with the juices from the pan the chop is broiled in, so you’re losing zero percent of that flavor that seeps out from the meat while roasting.
From start to finish, you’re really only turning on the oven and smashing a couple garlic cloves to pull this dish together. And you’re getting a restaurant presentation with little to no effort. That’s a loveable, go-to recipe in my book.
I N G R E D I E N T S
- 2 thick, bone in pork chops
- Approximately 20 stems thyme
- 4 cloves garlic, smashed
- 6 tablespoons grated horseradish
- Olive oil, as needed
- Salt, as needed
- Pepper, as needed
- 1 / 3 cup heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons butter, salted or unsalted
D I R E C T I O N S
- Preheat the oven to 350*.
- Pat dry the pork chops. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a cast iron skillet, large enough to hold both pork chops. Add the garlic cloves and the stems of thyme.
- When the oil is very hot, almost smoking, put the pork chops in the skillet so they are settled amongst the herbs and garlic cloves. Allow to sear on one side for 4 to 5 minutes on medium-high heat. Flip the pork chops, sear for 2 minutes, and place the skillet in the oven.
- Bake the pork chops for 25 to 30 minutes, depending on thickness, until the pork chops are cooked through. The meat thermometer should reach *160.
- Remove the pork chops and thyme stems from the pan, leaving the garlic. Add the cream, butter, horseradish a pinch of salt and a pinch of pepper to the pan. Scrape up the brown bits from the pan while the sauce reduces for 5 minutes or so.
- Pour the sauce over the pork chops, and serve hot.