Balsamic Glazed Pork Chops with Caramelized Shallots.
This recipe is pretty close to perfection.
I will admit to being pretty burnt out on balsamic vinegar. For several years now, balsamic salad dressings have been everywhere. It’s easy to go on balsamic overload. However, one of the big advantages of balsamic over other vinegars is the ability to reduce it down to a syrup. Then it becomes thick, smooth tasting, and almost sweet…something entirely different from that ultra-pucker-inducing dressing.
And the best part about this recipe? I bet you have almost ALL of these ingredients in your kitchen right now.
This is a meal that feels, looks, and tastes super fancy but start to finish took about 20 minutes with minimal ingredients.
Here’s what you need:
Pork Chops, Shallots, Balsamic Vinegar, Olive Oil, Sugar, Salt & Pepper.
Really, everyone has sugar, salt, and pepper in their kitchen already. Many of us also regularly use balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Grab some big, center cut pork loin chops (bone in) at the store and a handful of shallots and you’re ready to go.
The only thing I would change about this recipe is that I would use twice as many shallots next time. I love shallots and for this dinner to really be at its best, it’s great to have a bite of shallot with each bite of pork chop.
We’ve used shallots a lot here at Idiot’s Kitchen, but if you’re unfamiliar with them, they are related to the onion and are actually members of the Allium or lily family. They have a much milder flavor than even red onions and are now widely available in most grocery stores.
Cut the shallots in quarters but leave the stem end intact. Then you can peel off the outer brown skin but the stem will keep the little quarter pieces of shallot together.
I used 5 medium shallots, but as I said above, the next time I make this I will use twice that amount.
Pat the pork chops dry with a paper towel and season them on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat and add the chops and shallots to the pan. Brown the chops on both sides – about 3-4 minutes per side – and give the shallots a stir around the pan to caramelize.
When the chops are brown on both sides, remove them to a plate but leave the shallots in the pan. Pour in 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar and add 1 teaspoon of sugar to the pan. Cook the vinegar for about 1 minute so that it starts to thicken and the sugar dissolves.
Turn the heat down to low and add the chops and any accumulated juices back to the pan. Turn the chops to coat both sides in the vinegar sauce.
At this point, the vinegar smells VERY strong but don’t worry, it will mellow out significantly in the next few minutes as it cooks and condenses down into a syrup. This is the famous balsamic reduction that you pay big bucks for in fancy restaurants.
Put a lid on the pan and cook 5-10 minutes more, turning once, until the pork is cooked through.
My balsamic sauce was quite thick at this point, however if yours has not thickened up enough, remove the chops, turn the heat up to medium and boil the sauce until it is the thickness you desire. This should only take 1 or 2 minutes more.
Serve each pork chop with a small side of the caramelized shallots and a good dressing of the balsamic glaze.
Sometimes the simple dishes are the best. This one’s a keeper!
Here’s the recipe – Adapted from Gourmet Today