Don’t shy away from pork chops

Pork chops are one of the meats that sometimes gets overlooked. People tend to shy away from it for several reasons. Some feel it’s hard to cook, gets to dry and touch, or is too bland. But those pork chops can have so many good qualities to them.
Depending on the cut, such as the tenderloin, the pork can be as lean as a chicken breast. Some cuts, such as center loin chop, are comparable in calories and fat to a skinless chicken leg. Plus, in a 3 oz cut of the pork, there are about 24 grams of protein.
Now let’s add in some B vitamins, phosphorus, niacin, and the recently popular, zinc, all of which pork helps provide.
Being lean is also what makes this a challenge to cook without turning it to something that might be more suited for a new pair of boots than your dinner plate. Be careful not to overcook the pork to best prevent it from drying out. A meat thermometer is especially helpful. The safe internal pork cooking temperature is now 145 degrees fahrenheit.
Once it has reached this temperature, remove from the heat and let it rest for a few minutes.
Also helpful is to cook the pork in a sauce. This recipe uses wine and cranberries to give some flavor as well. Cranberries are so rich in antioxidants. However, they are not usually something most of us will sit and just eat by the handful. Cranberries are tart, which usually means we add lots of sugar to help offset the taste. This recipe does a good job of using just a small amount of sugar and some spice to let those flavors provide a sweet, spicy addition to the tart flavor, rather than cover the tartness.
The wine brings a rich flavor to the dish. Use a good wine, one that you would enjoy drinking, too. (After all, the recipe just used ¾ cup, so you may want to share the rest as a dinner drink). If you choose to skip the wine, you could substitute Pomegranate juice or cherry juice and omit the wine. Neither of those are very sweet, so would help provide the same flavor profile.
Lastly, don’t skip those herbs. The thyme and rosemary add the perfect touch to this weeknight dinner. But, it also is pretty enough to serve for your Christmas dinner.
One more tip, you can use the rest of the cranberries and rosemary to make some beautiful, and inexpensive, centerpieces. Head over to to find those and many other wonderful recipes!