If I take out the pantry staples in the ingredient list, you need approximately three items to create this fast and delightful dinner. Like chicken, there are a million ways to partner seared pork chops with different sides and sauces to transform an average preparation of meat into something spectacular.
In the culinary arts, there's a word for everything, including the brown particles found at the bottom of pans after browning meat or vegetables, known as fond. Because of how it is created, fond is essentially concentrated flavor, and the technique for dislodging the fond from the bottom of the pan and incorporating into a sauce is called deglazing. You may have also heard it referred to as a pan sauce. It's a quick way to add more flavor and moisture to your meal.
In this recipe, you add tangy whole grain mustard and sweet honey to the fond left in your saucepan and make a thick and silky sauce that will make your mouth water.
1 shallot, thinly sliced into rings
2 teaspoons mustard seeds
2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Kosher salt and black pepper
4 bone-in pork rib chops (about 12 ounces each)
2 tablespoons olive oil, (I like California Olive Ranch EVOO)
1 tablespoon whole grain Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
1 bunch kale leaves
Place shallot and mustard seeds in a small bowl or heatproof jar. Bring sugar, 1/4 cup vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons water to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar and salt. Pour over shallot and mustard seeds; set aside.
Season both sides of the pork chops with salt and pepper. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Working in batches if needed, cook pork chops until browned and cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a large plate.
Create Pan Sauce
Reduce heat to medium-low and add mustard, honey, remaining 2 tablespoons vinegar, and a splash of water to skillet (this will spatter in your hot pan). Using a wooden spoon, scrape up the beautiful browned bits from bottom of the skillet, until the liquid is slightly reduced, about 1 minute. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Remove pan sauce from heat.
Dress the Greens
Tear the kale leaves off the stem and rinse and dry (I love to use my salad spinner). Pour the greens into your sauce pan and toss with tongs to coat. Taste the kale and season with salt and pepper if needed.
Drain shallot and mustard seeds. Serve pork chops with greens topped with pickled shallot and mustard seeds and drizzled with a tad more EVOO.