Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Pan Seared Pork Cutlets with Lemon Butter Caper Sauce and Parmesan Penne

Pan Seared Pork Cutlets with Lemon Butter Caper Sauce

4 thin boneless pork chop cutlets, seasoned with salt and pepper
3/4 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup dry white wine (preferably Chardonnay)
1/4 cup low sodium chicken stock
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tablespoon well drained capers
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 good squeeze honey

Heat up oil in a large rimmed skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is sauntering around the pan freely, add the seasoned chops, spacing evenly apart and letting cook about 4-5 minutes per side or until they've achieved a nice golden brown on the first side and release somewhat easily. Turn over and cook another 3-4 minutes or until golden on the other side. Transfer to a low, warm oven (250 or so) to keep warm while you make the sauce.

Kick the heat up to high on the pan and add the white wine, scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the pan while you bring to a boil. Let boil down for about 5 minutes, or until reduced by at least half, then add in the chicken stock. Boil for 1 more minute then lower the heat to low and add in the juice of a half lemon, capers, butter and honey. Stir until all is dissolved and melted in. Taste for salt/pepper/sweetness. If it's too tart, add in another squeeze honey and stir in. I can't imagine it wouldn't be piquant enough with all that tart lemon and salty capers, but you never know.

Remove the chops from the oven and add back to the pan along with any accumulated juices. Serve warm with the sauce and capers ladled over the pork.

Parmesan Penne

2 cups petite whole wheat penne
handful kosher or sea salt for pasta water
4 tablespoons Fresh Dill, Lemon and Balsamic Dressing, recipe follows
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (or more if you like)
2 tablespoons lightly toasted slivered or sliced almonds

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add in a handful of salt, let return to a boil, and add in your pasta. Cook for 6 minutes or JUST until al dente. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a large bowl (if you just drain it and return to the same pot, your cheese will get to hot when you stir it in and clump together instead of combining politely with the pasta.) Toss with the dressing then add in the cheese and toss again. You might want to throw a pinch of pepper in there and toss again. Just think about it. Serve with a scattering of toasted almonds over the top.

Fresh Dill, Lemon and Balsamic Dressing:

3 heaping tablespoons roughly chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon (a couple dashes) balsamic vinegar
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon honey
1 small garlic clove minced (or 1/2 if you're garlic sensitive)
1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil

Put the dill, balsamic, salt, pepper, honey, garlic, dijon and lemon juice in a blender. Turn on low for a minute or so to knock the fight out of them. Scrape down the sides to drown any disobedient bedfellows, then blend again for a few seconds. With the motor on low, remove the cap from the top and slowly drizzle in the olive oil so that it emulsifies as added. Taste for salt/pepper/honey making any adjustments necessary. If it's too tart, add another squeeze of honey. If it's bland, another pinch of salt and/or pepper. Usually all a 'blah' dressing needs is a bit more salt, but then again another slug of balsamic never hurt one either.


Andrea said...

Wow I bet this is GOOD!!! I'm not a huge capers fan but in this dish I'm sure I'd make an exception. Yum!

Jenn said...

A meal after my own heart! Can't believe how much our tastes alike! I love it.. this dish looks absolutely delicious!