Cooking with vegetables and fruit that are in season can add freshness to your meal, and help you save a bit of money on your grocery bill. Produce that’s used in-season is perfectly ripe and at its best, and also tends to be cheaper since it doesn’t have to be imported.
A quick and easy fall meal that uses ingredients perfectly in season is this dish – apple cider-Dijon pork chops with roasted apples and sweet potatoes. This delicious dinner can be ready in 35 minutes. To keep everything in season and on a budget, serve the pork chops with other fall root vegetables like roasted squash, Brussels sprouts, or parsnips.
- 4 boneless pork loin chops, about 7 ounces and 1 inch thick
- 1 cup apple cider or apple juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 pound red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams), peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 Pink Lady or Fuji apples, cored and cut into eighths
- 1 large fennel bulb, trimmed and cut into eighths
- 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary cut into 1-inch pieces
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Let the pork stand at room temperature while the oven preheats at 450°F. Place a large rimmed baking sheet in the oven and heat until very hot.
- In a large bowl, toss the sweet potatoes, apples, fennel, and rosemary with 2 tablespoons of olive oil to coat, and season with salt and pepper. Carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven and spread the vegetables and apples on it. Roast, turning them over halfway through, for about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are browned and tender.
- Meanwhile, season the pork with salt and pepper. Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat on the stovetop. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, then add the pork chops to the skillet and cook for about 5 minutes per side, or until golden brown and barely pink when pierced in the centre with a sharp knife. Transfer to a platter and let stand for 5 minutes.
- Pour off all but 1 teaspoon of the oil from the skillet, leaving the brown bits in the pan. Heat the pan under medium-low heat, add the apple cider and bring to a simmer, scraping up the brown bits. Whisk in the mustard and simmer for about 2 more minutes to reduce the liquid slightly. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter to lightly thicken the sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Divide the sweet potato mixture among 4 dinner plates and place a pork chop alongside the vegetables. Drizzle with the apple cider sauce and serve.
Recipe Source: http://www.epicurious.com/
Feature image source: http://www.epicurious.com/