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January 31, 2015

Smothered Pork Chops with Onions & Bacon



I'm not a huge fan of pork. Don't get me wrong. I love bacon (thin and extra crispy!) and ribs have become one of my favorite go-to crock pot recipes. But pork chops or pork tenderloin? Not so much. However, my husband loves pork chops and while I try to cook as many recipes that we both enjoy, every now and then I try to fix something that he loves that I'd just as soon skip.



While perusing America's Taste Kitchen Slow Cooker Revolution, I stumbled upon this recipe and thought it might just be a winner. Forgetting that I already had plans for the night (margaritas and Mexican food with two co-workers!), I decided to go ahead anyway and make the recipe for my husband. The verdict? He said it was awesome. We had the leftovers a couple of days ago and I thought the pork was a little dry. I'll definitely give it another chance when I can actually eat it on the same day it's prepared.



Smothered Pork Chops with Onions and Bacon

4 oz. bacon (about 4 slices), chopped
3 onions, halved and sliced 1/2 inch thick
4 tsp. brown sugar
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp. minced fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 bay leaves
6 (7-oz.) bone-in blade-cut pork chops, about 3/4 inch thick, sides slit to prevent curling
Salt and pepper
1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley

Cook bacon in 12-inch skillet over medium over medium heat until crisp, 5-7 minutes; transfer to slow cooker. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons bacon fat left in skillet.

Add onions, 1 teaspoon sugar, garlic, and thyme to fat in skillet and cook over medium-high heat until onions are softened and well browned, about 10 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in broth, scraping up any browned bits and smoothing out any lumps; transfer to slow cooker.

Stir remaining tablespoon sugar, soy sauce, and bay leaves into slow cooker. Season pork chops with salt and pepper and nestle into slow cooker. Cover and cook until pork is tender, 6 to 8 hours on low or 3 to 5 hours on high.

Transfer pork chops to serving platter, tent loosely with aluminum foil, and let rest for 10 minutes. Let braising liquid settle for 5 minutes, then remove fat from surface using large spoon. Discard bay leaves. Stir in vinegar and parsley and season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon 1 cup sauce over chops and serve with remaining sauce.

Serves 6

My Notes:

Since I leave for work at 6:45 a.m, I prepped everything for this recipe the night before. All I had to do in the morning was heat the refrigerated bacon/onion sauce in the slow cooker before adding the chops.

I never bother to chop bacon. I simply fry it as I normally would and then break it into pieces or crumble as directed.

3 onions seemed like an awful lot, so I went with 2. 

I always use low-sodium soy sauce.

I didn't have any fresh parsley and I don't think it was missed.

I served this with rice for the first meal and mashed potatoes for the leftovers.

Next time, I'll probably just use 3-4 chops instead of 6.

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20 comments:

  1. Sounds delicious!

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    1. Andi, it was good, but not great. I think I need to find a better cut of pork (or reduce my cooking time) when using a crock pot.

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  2. Sounds amazing! I'll have to look for this cookbook as I've been trying to use my slow cooker more and America's Test Kitchen is pretty reliable.

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    1. Katherine, the flavor was very good, but the chops were a little too dry for my taste.

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  3. I'm the same as you Les. I'm not a big fan of pork chops. I do have them occasionally with sauerkraut (which my husband enjoys). This recipe sounds pretty tasty - and is one even I might like!

    Linda in VA

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    1. Linda, it was pretty tasty, but I want to find a different cut (maybe even a tenderloin) since the chops were a bit dry.

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  4. This does sound awesome. I have that cookbook, so I'm going to mark it to try. I'm not a big pork chop eater (preferring the tenderloin), but my husband likes bone-in chops.

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    1. As I mentioned in the previous comments, I think I need to either reduce the cooking time or find a different cut of pork for this recipe. The flavor was very good, but the meat was too dry for me.

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  5. I have that cookbook, but I have not made one thing from it yet. I need to get it back out and take a look. I'm not much for cooking pork chops either. I never seem to know what to do with them. My mother used to fry them, but I don't fry anything these days. These do look tasty - although 3 onions? LOL

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    1. Kay, I have a very simple recipe for frying pork chops that Rod absolutely loves. It's pretty much just egg, bread crumbs and olive oil, but I don't like to make it more than a couple of times a year. Not healthy and it gets my stove top far too messy! :) Yeah, 3 onions is a bit much!

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  6. Looks delicious! I have this cookbook, so will give it a try when we get home.

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    1. Let me know how they turn out, if you do try this recipe, JoAnn. I may try it again and reduce the cooking time. I prefer moist pork chops and these were pretty dry.

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  7. I have that cookbook and was somewhat disappointed by all the prep that had to be done before you put the food in the crock pot. This sounds like it's worth the effort.

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    1. Wow. Seems like everyone has this cookbook. :) There is a lot of prep, but I'm getting in the habit of doing all that work the night before so all I have to do is throw it all in the slow cooker before I head off to work. I need to see if there are other recipes in the cookbook that I might like to try. So many cookbooks, so little time. :)

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  8. Another one I might try! We actually eat a fair amount of pork--more pork than chicken. Ever since I learned that pork can be a little tiny bit pink in the middle it has revolutionized our cooking--no more dried out hunks of meat!! Another favorite of ours is pork tenderloin (we cheat and get the hormel teriyaki flavored ones that are probably too high in sodium). Rub with some olive oil, garlic, rosemary, and roast. Mmm!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. We're just the opposite. We eat a ton of chicken and very little pork. My pork carnitas turned out great this weekend, though, so between that and ribs, I can't complain. Gonna add tenderloin to my menu in the next week or two. Rod's not a huge fan, but he'll pretty much eat whatever I cook.

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  9. This sounds yummy. I like using my slow cooker whenever possible, too! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

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    1. I've really enjoyed using my new crock pot this winter and I'm so happy I've found some good recipes. Makes life much easier after a long day!

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. That sounds delicious to me!

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    Replies
    1. Well, it wasn't a complete dud. Just needs a little tweaking and it may become a regular menu item for fall and winter. We'll see.

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