Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Blackened Pork Chops with Creole Peppers, Onions, Okra and Tomatoes

My wife had defrosted some pork chops for dinner, but we were unsure of what to do with them.  Fortunately my cast iron skillet had been left out.  That served as the inspiration for me to make blackened pork chops.  As a vegetable/sauce, I thought that a Creole themed vegetable would make perfect sense.  Here is what you need:

4 4oz pork chops
Blackening spice
2-3 tbsp high smoke point cooking oil
1-2 can diced tomatoes
1-2 green bell pepper julienned
3-4 ribs celery, sliced
1 white or yellow onion julienned
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 cup frozen okra
Creole seasoning
4 cups cooked white rice

The first thing you want to do is to preheat your oven to 350 degrees as you will finish the pork in the oven.  Next season both sides of the pork chops with the blackening spice.  For the spice you can either purchase one or make your own

After the pork is seasoned you are going to want to sear it in a very hot pan.  A cast iron skillet works best for this.  However, if you don't have one, just use a regular saute pan.
Next you nee to get your pan nice hot.  A good way to test the pan is to drip some water into it.  If it sizzles and skips right away the pan is ready.  Add about a tablespoon to a tablespoon and half of oil to the pan, just enough to cook the bottom of the pan. Traditionally blackening is done with butter, but I find butter has a tendency to burn, especially if you are not used to working with it at such high temperatures. For this same reason you will want to use an oil with a high smoke point such as canola, corn, or grape seed. DO NOT use olive oil.  It is too delicate and will burn!   When the oil is also hot, which should not take too long, add your pork chops to the pan.  The pork will want to stick to the pan.  This is OK as this is part of the sear and you are developing flavor and color.  You will know hen it is time to flip the chops over as they will no longer stick to the pan and will have a beautiful color.  If all the pork chops don't fit into the pan, then sear them in batches.

 After the chops have been seared just place them on a sheet pan with a rack so that they can go into your preheated oven.  The chops should take about 15-25 min., depending on how well done you want them.
While the pork is cooking in the oven you can work on the sauce.  First step is to heat a pan large enough to hold all your ingredients and add the rest of the cooking oil.  Next saute your onions, bell peppers, celery and garlic.  As they are cooking season them with some of the creole seasoning.  As with the blackening spice, you can purchase some or make your own
After the vegetables have softened a bit, add your frozen okra. Stir it and allow the okra to thaw a bit.
Once the okra is incorporated, add your canned tomatoes.
Stir and allow to simmer while the pork is finishing in the oven.  Taste it and adjust the seasoning. 

After the pork is done (I like to pull my pork out at 135-140 degrees) you are ready to serve your meal.
To serve simply place a cups worth of cooked white rice on your plate.  Lay a pork chop over the rice and top with about a cups worth of sauce/vegetables.  If you like spiciness, just add some Tabasco or Cajun hot sauce to your dinner.

Now just enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Great recipes and you're giving me new restaurants to try out. Thanks CHEF !!