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Garlic Pork Chop with Warm Low Country Okra Salad

I realize the pork chop looks a little odd, but I cut it up the middle as though I were going to stuff it, even though that was not part of the plan. I did it so that it would cook faster -- always a dinner goal -- and also so that I could balance it, unattended in the pan, strip of fat side down and let it sizzle away into crackling while I got on with the rest of the meal.

This is a good dish for those who say they don't like okra because halving it and introducing it to a very hot pan does seem to chemically negate that aspect of the okra. If you really hate okra, green beans would work here instead.

1 boneless pork center cut boneless pork chop

1 handful of okra (I ended up with about 8)

3 Campari tomatoes, quartered, or 6 cherry tomatoes, halved

1/2 shallot, peeled and sliced into half moons

1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed

1 Tbsp crumbled Feta cheese

1 tsp olive oil

Salt and black pepper to taste

Cut the pork chop lengthwise from the flesh rather than the fatty side, as though you were going to stuff it. Stop before you cut all the way through.

Add the oil and the garlic to the pan and heat until the oil shimmers. Lower the heat and stand the pork chop fat side down in the pan. Press down to open the chop up as illustrated below and add salt and pepper.

Let the chop sizzle away while you prepare your vegetables -- chop the onions into thin half moons, remove the tops of the okra and halve them lengthwise, cut the tomatoes.

Once everything is chopped, add the onion and the okra to the pan and stir to combine with the pan juices. Flip the pork chop to cook as flat as possible and salt and pepper the chop. Let the chop cook uninterrupted for two minutes, stir the veggies from time to time while the meat cooks.

Flip the meat to the other side and add the tomatoes to the veggie mix. Let the pork cook uninterrupted for an additional two minutes, stir to combine the tomatoes with the okra mixture.

Remove the pork from the pan and cover with a piece of aluminum. Turn the heat off under the pan and add the crumbled Feta to the top of the vegetables. Do not stir for the minute or two that it takes the chop to rest.

Remove the aluminum tent from the chop and pour any accumulated juices into the pan containing the vegetables. Stir to combine with the vegetables and now melted cheese.

Remove the clove of garlic before eating.

This is a nine minute and twenty two second to the table meal.

Inspiration recipe, here.


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