In a desire to keep this blog (and my diet) from becoming all chicken all the time, I am making an effort to buy different cuts of meat at the store. It’s actually been a challenge, since I am primarily a poultry and seafood eater. But in an effort to branch out, I’ve been buying pork. It helps when it’s on sale. I bought a thin-sliced pork loin, which is really lean and cooks up in a matter of minutes. I also did a pork chop loin, which is thicker and takes a while longer to cook. In both cases, I used the same sauce.
And in both cases, it was definitely a success. The sauce was sweet and complemented the pork really well. The whole recipe comes together very quickly and I recommend it for a weeknight meal. You can have dinner on the table in less than 15 minutes!
I served this with a spinach side. I just sauteed some spinach in the leftover pan juices and added a some raisins and pine nuts. What a quick and easy side!
Adapted from Simply Recipes
Sweet Maple Pork
6 thin-cut pork loins or 2 pork chops
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon canola oil, divided
1/2 small yellow onion, chopped
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
- Sprinkle chili powder and salt on pork and let sit at room temperature 30-45 minutes.
- Heat a heavy pan on medium-high heat. Add about a tablespoon of canola oil and heat until it ripples. Brown the pork in the pan. If using thin-cut pork loins, brown about 4 minutes each side, until cooked through. If using pork chops, brown about 4 minutes each side, then add 1/2 cup water, cover saucepan, and steam until cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove pork from pan and keep warm.
- Add a teaspoon of oil to the pan and add onions. Saute about 5 minutes, until translucent. Add vinegar, maple syrup, Worcestershire sauce and cornstarch mix. Scrape up browned bits in pan and heat to a simmer. Cook together until thickened, about 5 minutes.
- Pour sauce over pork and serve immediately.
Pork chop sprinkled with chili spices.
Thin-cut pork loin sprinkled in chili spices.
The ingredients for the sweet sauce: cider vinegar, maple syrup, Worcestershire sauce and chopped onion.
Brown those babies up in a pan. Takes no time at all if you’re using thin-sliced pork loin. Can you tell I really like the pork loin? It is just so convenient and cooks up quickly. With the chops, you have to work with a knife and fork to cut around the bone. With the loin, you can just eat the whole thing!
But to be fair, the pork chop was much juicier and more tender. So use whichever you prefer: thin-sliced pork loin for a faster and easier meal, or pork chop for a slower-cooking, more tender and juicy meat.