Pork chops were next in line for the meat rotation. As usual, I got busy doing other things and did not have time to really think of what to make for dinner, other than we were having pork chops for dinner. So I had to think of something quick and easy, and of course, delicious as well. No problem. I had a ton of vegetables on hand, like I always do, so I made them in a simple Italian style, then served them over orzo and the pork chops. Italian cooking, like Spanish and Mediterranean cooking, emphasizes using lots of fresh, hearty vegetables; a philosophy I whole heartedly subscribe to. Not only is it a very tasty way of cooking, but it is also very healthy.
Italian Pork Chops and Vegetables
1-1 1/2 lbs pork chops
2 TBSP garlic – divided – 1 TBSP for the marinade and 1 TBSP for the vegetables
2 tsp basil – divided – 1 tsp for the marinade and 1 tsp for the vegetables
2 tsp oregano – divided – 1 tsp for the marinade and 1 tsp for the vegetables
2 tsp thyme – divided – 1 tsp for the marinade and 1 tsp for the vegetables
2 tsp marjoram – divided – 1 tsp for the marinade and 1 tsp for the vegetables
1 tsp red pepper flakes, or to taste
salt & pepper to taste
1/3 cup olive oil
2-3 TBSP balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups tomatoes, diced medium
1 zucchini, sliced
1/4 red onion, sliced
1-1 1/2 cups mushrooms, sliced
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
First, make the marinade with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, and herbs. Let the pork marinate for at least 1 hour before cooking. I grilled the pork chops, but you can cook them however you like.
While the pork chops are marinating, saute all the vegetables and garlic, except for the tomatoes, in olive oil. I added extra herbs and salt and pepper as needed as they were cooking. Cook for about 5-7 minutes.
Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the tomatoes to the mixture. Let everything simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
Once the sauce is ready, top it over your favorite pasta, then add the pork chops, and top again with more vegetables. I used orzo this time because I wanted a lighter dish. !Mangia!
This is a light meal that is full of flavor. It’s a perfect choice for dinning al fresco along with some warmed ciabiatta and a glass or two of vino. Red or white will do just fine.
Stay safe and stay well Everyone. ‘Til next time.