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Pork Chops with Pears and Creamy Cider Sauce

Pork chops with pears & creamy tarragon, cider sauce, the chops are cooked on the bone and finished in the oven whilst the sauce is made.

The rind is crisped up in a medium pan to get the fat rendering and the crackling to crisp before they get a flash in a hot oven to finish cooking.

Overhead pork chops with pears and a cider tarragon sauce served with roasted cabbage.

Pork, Cider, Tarragon and Pears

I love pork chops and they are no stranger to my site.

Whether it be my favourite sweet and sour pork chops or slightly more elegant pork chops with Jerusalem artichoke puree, they are never far from our weekly meal plan.

Most of the time I cook them with the rind removed, as I do in my Spanish influenced pork chops.

But here they are cooked with the rind and fat on. My time in Hungary has given me a real love of pork fat, so I eat the lot.

But you can remove it if you like after the chops have been cooked, keep the crispy crackling though!

In this recipe keeping the chop whole helps the meat cook in a beautifully even way. It delivers the most succulent pork chops.

The recipe is rounded out with a simple creamy cider and tarragon sauce and griddled pears.

Close up pork chops with griddled pears and cider tarragon sauce.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use thick-cut pork chops?

For this cooking technique, yes! Skinny pork chops that you get from the supermarket will overcook and be dry if you cook them using this method.

Go and chat with your butcher and get some chops that are 25-35mm thick. That’s an inch to an inch and a half for the Americans visiting.

Do I have to use a meat thermometer?

If you want to take the guesswork out of cooking meat, then yes! Buy one, they will make you a better cook and they cost very little.

What sort of cider should I use?

A note for my American readers, Cider means booze in most of the world. As a result, you need to make this recipe with hard cider, a dry cider at that.

I used an Aspall premier cru for this recipe!

Can I replace the pears with apples?

Yes, absolutely! They are a direct replacement, treat them in exactly the same way as the pears.

Why do the pears get put in lemon water?

This is purely about practicality!

If you do not do this and slice the pears early they will go brown. You can slice them when they are ready to cook and skip this step if you wish.

Creamy cider tarragon sauce poured over pork chops with griddled pears.

Serving Suggestions

These crispy pork chops with pears are a centrepiece that works so well with so many different side dishes.

It is particularly good with cabbage, here it is pictured served with some roasted cabbage slices.

But they would be equally good with some braised red cabbage, or even some simple buttered cabbage.

Other sides that would work particularly well are petit pois a la Francaise, braised cavolo nero or some glazed Chantenay carrots.

Of course, potatoes make a great side for this too.

Now we have the oven at a really high temperature, so roast potatoes are off the menu, but it is a perfect excuse to double down and break out the fondant potatoes.

A final suggestion would be some comforting mash. Mashed potatoes are the obvious choice, but celeriac mash or swede and carrot mash both work wonderfully.

Pork chops with griddled pears and cider tarragon sauce served with roasted cabbage.
Yield: 2 Servings

Pork Chops with Pears Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Thick cut pork chops cooked to perfection served with seared pears and a creamy tarragon cider sauce.

Ingredients

  • 2 Thick Cut Pork Chops
  • 1 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • ¾-1 Tsp Salt
  • 1 Pear
  • 1 Tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 (35g) Shallot
  • 50g (3 Tbsp + 1 Tsp) Butter
  • 250ml (1 Cup) Dry Cider
  • 125ml (½ Cup) Chicken Stock
  • 75ml (⅓ Cup) Double Cream, Heavy Cream in the US
  • 20g (2-3 Tbsp) Fresh Tarragon

Instructions

  1. Peel the pear, cut it in half lengthways and then remove the core with a spoon. Cut the pear into slices that are 3-5mm thick.
  2. Mix the lemon juice with enough water to just cover the pear slices when placed in a bowl.
  3. Peel the shallot then dice it as finely as you can.
  4. Strip the tarragon leaves from the stems, discard the stems then finely chop the leaves.
  5. Heat 28cm or 11" frying pan (not non-stick) over a medium heat.
  6. Coat the pork shops in the oil then season generously with salt, paying particular attention to the rind.
  7. Cook the pork chops rind side down in the frying pan for 10-15 minutes. The idea is to begin rendering down the fat and to crisp up the rind. I hold them together and then stand there and sear one half of the rind first then rock them to sear the second half.
  8. Once the rind has begun to crisp turn the heat up to high and when the pan is hot flip the chops down onto the flesh side and cook for 6 minutes.
  9. Flip the chops, cook for 1 more minute to sear the other flesh side a little, then transfer to a preheated baking tray in an oven at 220°C or 430°F and cook for a further 6-7 minutes.
  10. Return the pan to a medium heat and add the butter, when it begins to foam toss in the shallots and cook for 1-2 minutes stirring continuously.
  11. Pour in the cider and chicken stock, turn the heat up to high and reduce by two-thirds, this will take between 5-10 minutes. Ensure you scrape any crispy bits from the bottom of the pan and incorporate them into the sauce.
  12. Whilst the sauce is reducing heat a griddle pan over a high heat.
  13. By now the pork will have had its time in the oven, check the temperature of the pork using a meat thermometer, I aim to remove the meat from the oven at 62°-65°C or 145°-150°F. Then rest the meat for 7-10 minutes. This will result in a perfectly cooked pork chop that has just a little pinkness when rested.
  14. Once the sauce has been reduced turn the heat down to a gentle simmer and then pour in the cream and add the tarragon. Gently heat until the pork is ready to serve.
  15. Finally, dry the pear slices and cook them in a griddle pan for 1-2 minutes per side.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 858Total Fat: 60gSaturated Fat: 28gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 26gCholesterol: 230mgSodium: 1230mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 5gSugar: 25gProtein: 45g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

Anna

Tuesday 24th of July 2018

What a delish recipe. I love to cook with cabbage and combining it with pear and walnut is genius!

Brian Jones

Sunday 29th of July 2018

It works so well, hanks Anna.

Zaarah

Tuesday 24th of July 2018

This looks stunning and I love using pears in warm dishes. I’m definitely pinning this to try later. Thank you for the inspiration.

Brian Jones

Sunday 29th of July 2018

Thanks Zaarah

Beth

Tuesday 24th of July 2018

What a fantastic combination! I love the sweetness of the pears and the crunch of the walnuts! That is great you have such giving neighbors! I do have issues cooking pork sometimes in the US. They cut it too thin, so it is hard to not over ccok, even if you are super careful!

Brian Jones

Sunday 29th of July 2018

Yeah I live in a fun place :) Thin cut pork infuriates me, I genuinely don't get why people want to eat that dry stuff!

Julie @ Running in a Skirt

Monday 23rd of July 2018

What a delish combination! Love the cabbage, pear, and walnuts together! So tasty.

Brian Jones

Tuesday 24th of July 2018

Thanks Julie

Katie Crenshaw | A Fork's Tale

Monday 23rd of July 2018

This looks like the perfect comfort meal. I love that you cook it in one skillet. The pear and walnut combination sounds incredible.

Brian Jones

Tuesday 24th of July 2018

It is really rather good and so simple!

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