I often hear from people that they just don’t have the time to cook. I tell them about some of the meals I make and they look at me quizzically and say “You cook like that all the time?”
Like you, I have my leftover or takeout nights. Heck, this past week I had a chips and salsa night. But good, gourmet quality meals don’t need to take forever to cook. They can be simple and effortless, yet still restaurant quality that will leave your friends wondering how in the world you do it all.
Like this recipe. It starts by marinating boneless pork chops in a mixture of bourbon, molasses and brown sugar overnight. An absolute must is to use a quality bourbon with a recipe like this. The marinating process allows the bourbon to impart a ton of flavor to the pork, so use a bourbon that you would also drink straight with no mixers. I’m partial to the Burnside Bourbon from Eastside Distilling, a local to me distillery. It’s smooth with notes of cinnamon and oak that infuse the pork chops in this dish with a wonderful flavor.
Once marinated, when I come home from work the next day, it only takes me about 20 minutes to turn those pork chops into an unforgettable meal. That’s right 20 minutes.
One of the key ingredients to this recipe is coconut oil. Cooking the pork chops in coconut oil adds a depth of flavor to the bourbon and molasses that simply makes the dish. Using a thick cut pork chop results in a nice amount of renderings left in the pan that makes for a nice base to then saute up a mixture of cut fresh carrots, apples, and rosemary. Of course the bonus is that I only use one pan which also makes for easy cleanup.
The rosemary is also an essential ingredient to this dish. First, just the smell of it cooking in the remnants of bourbon, molasses, coconut oil, and pork renderings leaves my mouth watering at the prospect of the food to come. But mostly the aromatic flavor adds yet another layer flavor of complexity to the bourbon, molasses, and coconut oil that completes the meal.
So you tell me. Why avoid cooking when it’s this easy?
- Serves: 2
- Calories: 320.5
- Fat: 13.3
- Saturated fat: 8.6
- Polyunsaturated fat: 0/4
- Monounsaturated fat: 0.6
- Carbohydrates: 21.5
- Sugar: 14.6
- Sodium: 517.3
- Fiber: 5.0
- Protein: 21.9
- Cholesterol: 45.0
- 2 4-oz. boneless pork chops, thick cut
- ½ cup bourbon
- 2 tbsp black strap, unsulphured molasses
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp organic, virgin coconut oil
- 2 medium carrots, diced
- 1 granny smith apple, diced
- 1 tbsp minced fresh rosemary
- ¼ tsp coarse sea salt
- Whisk together the bourbon, molasses, and brown sugar. Cover the pork chops with the bourbon mixture in a shallow dish or resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate overnight, turning in the morning to ensure the chops are evenly marinated on both sides.
- Heat the coconut oil in a skillet on medium high.
- Remove the pork chops from the marinade, shaking off the excess and discarding the marinade. Add the pork chops to the skillet, reduce heat to medium.
- Cook the pork chops for about 4 minutes on each side or until the pork is just cooked through. Be careful not to overcook or the pork will be too tough.
- Remove the pork chops from the pan and place on a plate to let the juices set.
- Add the carrots, apple, rosemary, and salt to the same pan. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Serve each pork chop on a bed of the carrot and apple mixture. Cut into that beautiful piece of meat and savor every bite!