Recipes Main Courses Pork Orange-Braised Pork Chops

Orange-Braised Pork Chops

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 435 minutes
Servings: 6

The spinach and orange salad is optional but highly recommended as it adds bright, fresh flavor to these braised pork chops.

Ingredients:

  • 6 bone-in pork loin chops, each about 1 1/2 inches thick
  • Salt, to taste, plus 1/2 tsp.
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 large shallots, halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 2 Tbs. white wine vinegar
  • Finely grated zest of 2 oranges (reserve oranges if making salad; see below)

For the spinach and orange salad (optional):

  • 1 1/2 Tbs. white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 to 6 cups baby spinach
  • 2 Tbs. finely snipped fresh chives (optional)

Directions:

Season the pork chops generously on both sides with salt and pepper. In a large, heavy fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. When the oil is hot, working in batches if necessary to avoid crowding, add the chops and sear, turning once, until golden brown on both sides, 8 to 10 minutes total. Transfer the chops to a plate.

Pour off most of the fat from the pan and return it to medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté until they begin to brown, about 6 minutes. Pour in the wine and stir to dislodge any browned bits from the pan bottom. Stir in the stock, vinegar, orange zest, the 1/2 tsp. salt and several grinds of pepper. Transfer the contents of the pan to a slow cooker and stack the pork chops on top. Cover and cook on low according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the pork chops are very tender, about 7 hours.

Meanwhile, make the spinach and orange salad: Trim the remaining peel and pith from the 2 reserved oranges and cut them into segments. Roughly chop the segments. In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, salt and several grinds of pepper. Whisk in the olive oil. Add the spinach, the orange segments and chives and toss to mix.

Divide the pork chops among warm individual plates. Spoon the braising liquid over the chops, top with the salad and serve immediately. Serves 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma The New Slow Cooker, by Brigit Binns (Weldon Owen, 2010).