It’s no secret that I have a penchant for anything Italian. However, there are only so many lasagnas and risottos one can eat before they yearn for something new to try. The idea for this recipe sparked years ago, when I spotted a recipe for pork chops with vinegar peppers in The Sopranos Family Cookbook. However, the recipe called for spicy pickled peppers, which diddn’t really appeal to me . I thought bell peppers would bring more flavor to the “party”, as well as look more attractive.
I’ve always been a huge fan of balsamic pan sauces when it came to any pan-seared meat, so decided on that for my deglazing agent to get all those yummy bits from the bottom of the pan. Plus, balsamic vinegar is pretty mild on the acidity scale. That’s just what I was looking for to pair with pork, which is on the milder side.
I used boneless pork chops this time around, because it was all that was available to me at the store last week. I usually like to get a thin cut bone-in chop if I can, because I think they have better flavor and retain more moisture. But, the boneless was great. Just make sure you don’t overcook them, as they can dry out so quickly! Alternatively, I’m sure the dish would be wonderful with chicken breasts or thighs.
Pork Chops with Vinegar Peppers
6 pork chops (bone-in or boneless, 1 inch thick)
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 bell peppers, sliced 1/2 inch thick
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
fresh ground pepper
Season pork chops on both sides with salt and pepper. Add enough olive oil to coat the bottom of a large, heavy bottomed skillet. Heat over high heat until shimmering. Add half of the pork chops. Cook for 3 minutes, or until nice and golden on both sides. Remove to a paper towel lined plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Add remaining chops, and repeat process, remove to the plate when cooked.
To the now empty pan, add the sliced pepper. Reduce heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring occasionally, until peppers are beginning to soften. Add garlic, and sauté for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add the balsamic vinegar, and scape the bottom of the pan vigorously with a wooden spoon to loosen up fond. Let vinegar reduce until it coats the peppers and is almost syrupy in consistency.
Plate pork chops, and top with the vinegar peppers.