Whether you're grilling, pan frying or shaking and baking, pork chops always make for a nice meal. My favorite way of preparing chops is marinating, then baking or grilling. Marinades always work well with pork chops. They add lots of great flavor and your chops won't end up dried or leathery. You want to be sure to let the chops marinate for at least 2-4 hours.
One of my go-to marinades is Italian dressing. It's loaded with spices and herbs and is available in a nice variety, from light and creamy to zesty and robust. It works well with pork, chicken and fish.
Soy sauce also makes for a terrific marinade base. You can then season the soy sauce with all different kinds of spices and herbs and take the flavor in all kinds of tasty directions. Some spices that I like to add for pork are ginger, allspice, honey, sesame oil and brown sugar (more on that in another post).
For this recipe you'll want to use an oil-based Italian dressing (not Creamy Italian). To help kick it up a bit, I like to top the chops with some thin sliced onions and roasted red peppers. Serves well with rice, noodles or couscous. And don't forget the applesauce!
PORK CHOPS ITALIANO
4-6 chops (your choice of thickness)
1 bottle of oil-based Italian salad dressing (not creamy Italian)
1 small onion, sliced thin
1 jar roasted red peppers, sliced
Pierce pork chops with a fork to allow dressing to soak through. Place chops in a plastic baggie, pour dressing over chops and let marinate in refrigerator for at least 2-4 hours.
Heat oven to 350º. Remove chops from marinade, making sure that some marinade stays on the chops. Place chops in a 13x9 sprayed baking dish. Top chops with thin slices of onion and roasted red peppers. Cover dish with aluminum foil. Gently puncture the foil with a fork in a few spots to allow steam to escape. Bake for approximately 45-60 minutes, depending on thickness of your chops. Thinner chops will be done at about 35-45 minutes, thicker chops will take longer, around 60 plus minutes. Chops will cook faster without aluminum covering, but will lose moisture and may end up dry. Gauge timing and method to your likeness, just be sure to check chops accordingly and make sure that chops are no longer pink inside.
* The Italian dressing adds plenty of flavor, so adding the onions and /or peppers is not necessary of you're not a fan of either taste.