Crunchy Pork Chops with Garlicky Spinach and Tomato Salad
Courtesy Nigella Lawson
- 2 pork chops, approximately 8 ounces each (Mine weren't that big, probably closer to 5 oz)
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup bread crumbs (You will only need 1 cup of bread crumbs if you also plan on breading yourself along with the pork chops! I used about a half a cup and still had oodles of waste)
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan
- 1 cup ground nut oil or similar, for frying (I used 1/4 cup peanut oil and probably still could've used a bit less)
- 3 medium tomatoes
- 1/2 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 4 cups baby spinach leaves (I don't think you can even find baby spinach here, so I just used regular)
- Salt and pepper
- I added a sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan cheese to this too
Trim the thick white fat off the pork chops, cutting carefully around the outside edge. Lay the chops between 2 pieces of plastic wrap and, using a mallet or a rolling pin beat them until the meaty part of the chop is half as thick. You will need to beat around the bone, so turn them over once as you go. I skipped this entire process. My pork chops were already rather lean and quite thin to begin with.
Beat the egg in a shallow wide bowl with the mustard, oregano, and salt and pepper. On a large plate or platter, combine the breadcrumbs with the Parmesan.
Press each of the chops into the egg mixture, coating either side. Then dip the eggy chops (for no reason whatsoever I start giggling every time I read the phrase 'eggy chops') into the bread crumbs, covering them evenly. Let them lie on a cooling rack to dry slightly while you heat the oil in a large frying pan. When a small cube of bread sizzles if dropped into the oil, then the oil is hot enough. Cook the chops until they are a deep golden color, about 5 to 7 (or 3-4) minutes a side (depending on how thin you've managed to get them and how cold they were before going in the oil).
Meanwhile, quarter the tomatoes and take out the seeds, then cut the shells into strips and dice them. You can take off the skins, too, if you prefer, by steeping the tomatoes first into a bowl of just boiled water for 3 to 5 minutes. Combine the diced tomato, minced or grated garlic, oil, and lemon juice in a bowl, and season well with salt and pepper.
When the chops are ready, toss the spinach in the tomato mixture until well coated and divide the salad between 2 large plates, putting each chop alongside.
The Verdict: Both Martijn and I loved these! The outside of the chops was perfectly crispy and the inside was nice and tender. The salad was also wonderful. These also come together REALLY fast. I think I had dinner done in less than 20 minutes which is practically a world record for me. I highly recommend giving this recipe a try!
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