One of my favorite cozy winter meals is a pasture-raised pork chop with buckwheat “grits” (actually, it’s organic Cream of Buckwheat) and any variation of greens, raw or cooked.
Pasture-raised pork is an excellent source of lean protein. It’s also an excellent source of B Vitamins (B6, B12, niacin, thiamine); a good source of Vitamin C; and a good source of minerals that support thyroid health (selenium, zinc and iron), as well as phosphorous. BTW: Pork fat is mostly monounsaturated fat, the same kind of fat in olive oil and avocado, and is a source of Vitamin D, especially if pasture-raised.
Avoid eating rare or undercooked pork, especially if you struggle with gut issues, like candida, SIBO, etc.
One tip: Marinating pork in an acid, like raw apple cider vinegar or lemon juice, for 30 mins. (or more) tenderizes it, making it easier to digest.
Pasture-Raised Pork Chops with Scallion-Garlic Rub
2 pasture-raised pork chops
*Season pork chops with Celtic sea salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste). Cover chops with several tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar (both sides).
Then, season pork chops (both sides) with Celtic sea salt (to taste), freshly ground black pepper (to taste), herbs de Provence, 1 teaspoon dried oregano and optional: a dash of smoked paprika.
Let seasoned chops marinate for 30 minutes or more.
For the Rub:
4 organic scallions, green part only, thinly sliced
2 large cloves organic garlic, minced
OPTIONAL: 1 serrano chili, minced
2-3 teaspoons of olive oil
Celtic sea salt, to taste
Place ingredients in a Mini-Prep food processor and buzz until ingredients are finely minced and come together in a rub. IMPORTANT: You will be adding the rub to the pork chops during the cooking process—not beforehand!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Or, if you choose “Convection Roasting”, preheat to 375 degrees (it will cook at 350 degrees).
Melt 1 teaspoon of coconut oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, but not smoking, add pork chops to the skillet. Sear one side (without rub) for apx. 3 minutes, depending on the the thickness of the cut.
Adjust heat as necessary. Using tongs, turn the pork chops over and sear the other side for apx. 3 minutes. While the second side of the chop is cooking, spread enough rub to evenly cover the COOKED side of the pork chop. Once you have seared the second side of the chop, flip chop over and spread the remainder of the rub over the cooked (second) side.
Transfer cast iron skillet (with chops) to the center rack of pre-heated oven.
Add a little water to the cast-iron skillet. Roast chops in the oven for another 6 to 8 minutes, or until cooked to desired doneness (be careful not to overcook!). Check for doneness by touch or by cutting into meat to check for visible pink (a little pink is fine; raw uncooked flesh is not!).