Saturday, February 26, 2011

Orange Pork loin chops.

Pork- the other white meat or is it.  Having grown up in a Jewish but not kosher household I did not have pork very often.  My mother rarely cooked it and I still do not often choose in the supermarket, more out of habit than anything else.  But it is wonderfully versatile, and the lean cuts can be flavorful without the extra bulk.   The right cut can truly be “the other white meat”.  If you don’t eat pork, this dish can be made with chicken breast.  The same rules would apply; take care not to dry the meat out.
What I absolutely adore about this recipe is the scent of oranges and caramelized meat that fills the house.  Serve it with a side salad and the dinner is done.  It also stores well for up to 3 days.

6 Pork Tenderloin chops about 1.5 inch thick.   ( I bought a whole tenderloin and cut it myself)
4 oranges (or oranges and tangerines)
4-5 scallions white parts only chopped
2 tbs olive oil
1 tsp of smoked paprika
½ tsp of Mexican chili powder ( I like the hot kind, but you can use mild)
Salt and white pepper

Juice 2 oranges and set the juice aside.  Cut thin strips of zest from the other 2 oranges, carefully avoiding the white spongy part.  Cut the zest into thin long strips.  Cut in between the membranes of the remaing oranges and release the orange segments. 
Preheat a large heavy duty skillet with 2 tbs of olive oil.  Season the chops with salt, white pepper, smoked paprika and chili powder.  Brown the chops on high heat for 3 minutes per side or until nicely browned.  If your skillet is not large enough to fit all the chops at once, you may need to do this in batches.  When the chops are browned, return all the meat to the pan, pour in the oranges juice, and add the zest and scallions.  Reduce the heat to med-low, cover and let the pork simmer in the sauce for 5 minutes.  Add the oranges slices and simmer for 2 min longer.  Remove the chops to the platter and reduce the sauce to the consistency you like.  Pour the sauce over the pork chops and serve immediately.

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