Honey Ginger Pork Chops with Pears and Apples

I finally ordered a meat thermometer today and am really excited about my purchase (it’s the little things, right?).  Over the years, I’ve gotten better with knowing when things are finished cooking, liked steak, burgers, etc., but I still struggle with pork and chicken.  I admit that I am the person you seasoned chefs shake your head at-I sometimes cut into the meat while it’s cooking to check for doneness. 😮  So then I end up with less than juicy chicken or pork, or pork that is a little overcooked because I never know how pink is too pink.  A lot of effort and sometimes money goes into cooking, and no one wants overcooked food.  So here’s hoping my new meat thermometer becomes one of my favorite cooking tools.

I wish I had it a few weeks ago when I made these honey ginger pork chops.  They were still good but could have cooked for a little less time.  I don’t want that small detail to take away from the recipe though.  I made these on the stove-top, but you could easily use the oven instead.  You could also substitute pork tenderloin for the pork chops.  I should note that when I made this dish, two of the pork chops had seasoning on them from my Grilled Fennel-Spiced Pork Chops with Lemon-Sage Vinaigrette recipe.  I had leftover unused pork chops from the last time I made it, so I froze two plain and two with the fennel rub.  The flavor of the fennel ended up being a great addition to this dish if you want to incorporate into the recipe that follows.  The ginger and turmeric (two of my favorite spices) give the pork chops plenty of flavor though on their own.

4 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 cup organic apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 peeled, grated fresh ginger root
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
4 boneless thick-cut pork chops
2 Bosc pears, cored and chopped
1 gala apple, cored and chopped
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken stock
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

img_7336In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, apple cider vinegar and honey.  Reserve half and set aside.  To the remaining mixture, whisk in the ginger, garlic and turmeric.  Generously season the pork chops on both sides with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper (or follow the recipe in the notes above for the fennel rub).  Place in a large resealable bag or container and add the honey ginger marinade.  Marinate in the fridge for an hour or overnight.

Heat a large stainless steel pan over medium heat.  Add the pork chops and discard the marinade.  Brown thoroughly on both sides.  To the pan, add the pears, apple and reserved marinade base.  Allow the fruit to  cook for a few minutes and then add the chicken stock to the pan.  Continue cooking the pork chops till cooked thoroughly (use your meat thermometer!).  Serve with a green salad or veggie of your choice.

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