Blackened & Roasted Bone-in Heritage Breed Pork Chops basted with a Ginger Peach BBQ Sauce, served with a Roasted Kabocha Squash, Kale, Hemp Heart, Zucchini & Quinoa Salad
This special steak house dinner inspired pork chop recipe is the perfect autumn season meal for those cold nights when you miss grilling out in the summer warmth. Fire up the oven and treat your family and friends with the best bone-in pork chop you can find, slathered with an easy homemade gingery peachy barbecue sauce that will make you reminisce on the flavors of summer, and paired with a healthy omega fatty acid rich salad, with two types of squash, herbs and hardy kale greens.
Make this recipe in the months of September to November where summertime just starts to turn into fall, where squash is at the beginning of its peak. You can really taste the fusion of both seasons with this crowd pleasing dish.
- 2 bone-in heritage breed/organic/pasture raised pork chops (1lb each)
- 2 tablespoons of barbecue seasoning
- ½ of tablespoon of salt (omit if using a seasoning without it)
- 1 tablespoon of grapeseed oil for frying
- 1-½ cups of kabocha squash, diced into ½ inch squares
- 1-½ cups of kale, chopped
- ½ cup of zucchini, de-seeded and diced into ½ inch squares
- ½ cup of cooked quinoa
- ¼ cup of hemp hearts
- ¼ of a medium red onion, finely chopped
- 15 leaves each of basil and/or mint, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of honey or agave
- 1 tablespoon of hemp oil
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 lb of frozen (defrosted) or canned peaches
- 2 tablespoons of honey or agave
- 1 tablespoon of fresh garlic
- 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger
- ¼ cup of white wine vinegar
- ¼ cup of water
- 2 teaspoons of salt
1.) Preheat an oven to 400F. Start by cooking some quinoa for the salad so you have enough time for it to cool down. Gather all of the ingredients.
2.) Rub the pork chops with the barbecue spice and set it aside on the countertop for about 15-20 minutes. (same amount of time as the quinoa cooking so you can work on both simultaneously).
3.) While you wait for the quinoa to cook and the pork to marinade, dice the kabocha squash into ½ inch cubes, place them on a lined baking tray, and roast them in the oven for 15 minutes or until fork tender. When the squash is done, cool completely in the refrigerator or on the counter.
3.) Gather and break down all the ingredients for your salad. Make sure to de-seed the zucchini (as shown below) so you have a crunchier texture and not a spongy one.
4.) Make the vinaigrette by whisking together the basil and/or mint, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, honey or agave, hemp oil, olive oil and salt. Fold in the squash, kale, zucchini, hemp hearts, quinoa and red onion, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and keep it chilled in your fridge until serving.
5.) Begin making the sauce by adding the peaches, honey, garlic, ginger, vinegar, water and salt in a small pot, bring it to a boil and then leave it on a simmer for 15 minutes.
6.) While the sauce is simmering, start searing the pork chops on high heat in a cast iron pan with the grapeseed oil for 1 minute on each side. This process is called “blackening” and it imparts that smoky grilled flavor you would get if you were to use an outdoor grill. After searing, place the chops on a roasting rack. Finish your sauce by puréeing it using a hand blender or food processor.
7.) Baste the top side of the chops with the smooth peach BBQ sauce and pop the chops in a 400F oven for 5 minutes. Remove the pork chops from the oven, flip, baste the other side, and then return them back in the oven.
6.) Now the last few minutes of the cook is very important in achieving the perfect chop. Place the chops back in the oven for 5 minutes, remove, and then check the inside with a meat thermometer. If the temperature reads 135F+, then remove them from the oven and place a foil “tent” to cover them so they can rest up, retain all those succulent juices, and come up to 140-145F in temperature for a perfect medium-well color. If the temperature reads under 130F, return them back in the oven for 2 minutes at a time, checking regularly, and inserting the meat thermometer until it reads 135F.
7.) After the pork has been resting for 10 minutes, slice into them, lay them on a plate with some sauce and the chilled squash salad, and enjoy!
- Resting: When the pork chop comes out of the oven, it is important to let it “rest.” Get a sheet of aluminum foil , fold it in half to make a “tent”, and place it on top of the chops for 10 minutes. This process ensures all the valuable juices in the pork stay inside. If you slice into the chop right away, all the juices will leak out and it will eat dry. Tenting will also keep all the heat inside without introducing any more, this way the pork cooks with the residual heat and you end up with the perfect inside temperature, medium to almost medium-well.
- Do not overcrowd the pan when searing the chops, you won’t get a nice crust this way. If you only have space for one, take turns searing the pork.
- Having a roasting rack is also important. It ensures that both sides of the pork chop cook evenly, the bottom crust doesn’t get soggy, and is important during resting that the bottom is separated from the tray so that steam doesn’t get trapped. Follow all these steps for a 5 star worthy pork chop!
- Having a meat thermometer is the easiest way to make sure you dont over or under cook any piece of meat. They’re not pricey at all so it’s best for every home cook to invest in one!
- Where can I get the best pork? Check your local butchery for the best cuts of pork you can get, most chain grocery and bulk food stores won’t have the same quality or even this cut of pork. Ask the butcher where they get it from and if they are pasture raised or organic. The better the quality of pork you get for this recipe, the better it will taste. Don’t skip on the quality and you will thank yourself!
- What is heritage breed pork? They are specific breeds that have been bred by our forefathers to retain the same genetics as they were in the past. Now, endangered, these pigs are a culinary treasure and are respected by chefs all around the globe. Heritage breed pork can be hard to come across, so if you can’t find any, use pasture raised, organic or free-range pigs for a better quality product.
- Can I use boneless chops? Yes, just cut the time in half to prevent overcooking.
- If I have extra time, can I marinate the pork overnight? Yes! This will give you a better flavor as well. You can make the salad and the sauce in advance too.