- 2 8 to 10 ounce pork loin chops, 1 inch thick
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon each, butter and olive oil
- 2 large, firm apples
- 1 large onion
- ⅓ bundle of fresh thyme – leaves stripped from stems, with a few sprigs saved for garnish.
- If needed, pound the chops to an even thickness. Salt and pepper each side generously, and set aside. You can do this up to 24 hours ahead of time – if leaving longer than 1 hour, cover and refrigerate, bring back out about an hour before cooking. They don’t have to sit at all, but if you think of it ahead of time, it will ensure a juicier, more tender result.
- Prep your apples and onions: Peel them, and cut in wedges, cutting from top to bottom – make the onions wedges about half the size of the apples – about 12 slices from each apple, and double that with the onions. Set aside.
- Using a heavy skillet [cast iron is great], heat the butter and oil over high heat until the butter foams.
- Place the chops in the pan, and leaving the heat high, sear on each side until you have a nicely browned crust. Don’t forget the edges – brown those too.
- Remove the chops to a plate, and set aside.
- There should be enough fat still in the pan, but you can add a bit more butter and oil if needed.
- Place the apple slices in a single layer, with the cut sides down. Distribute the onions over evenly.
- When one side of the apples is nicely browned, turn them over, stirring around the onions as well. Sprinkle the thyme leaves over.
- After a couple minutes, return the chops to the pan, nestling them down into the apples, with the first side you browned up. Cover the pan and cook about 5 minutes.
- If you like, you can check the pork with an instant-read thermometer. The center should be about 140º, though a little less is fine too. We like it on the pink side, but if you like it more well -done, cook it until it registers 145º.
- Serve with the apples and onions spooned over the chop, and a sprig of fresh thyme on top. A green salad and mashed winter squash are fine accompaniments. Refrigerate leftovers.
Recipe source: http://thecreeksidecook