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Pork chop in a cider cream sauce with caramelised apples and purple sprouting broccoli

Pork chop, cider cream sauce, caramelised apples, thyme

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Knowing how to make a good pan sauce is an essential cookery skill if you're someone who values time, efficiency and flavour in the kitchen. A pan sauce makes the most of all those delicious, caramelised bits of meat in the bottom of the pan, sweeping them up in a mixture of alcohol, stock and cream.

We've used cider as the base of our pan sauce here but the formula isn't a rigid one. You could substitute cider for Madeira or Marsala and make an equally delicious sauce to go with pork. Once you've seared the meat, throw your aromatics into the pan, then deglaze with some alcohol and cook off. Follow that with a good stock for richness and any other flavourings you might like.

Ingredients

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Method

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1
Prepare the caramelised apples first. Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and trim the apple quarters into nice barrel shapes. Put the butter in the pan and roll the apples in the foaming butter, then baste the butter over the apples until they’re softened and golden. Remove the apples and drain on kitchen paper, then set aside to reheat before serving
2
Preheat an oven to 180ºC/gas mark 4. Wipe out the pan used to cook the apples and place over a low heat. Score a criss-cross pattern into the fat on the side of each pork chop and place fat-side down in the pan, so they're standing up on their sides. Slowly render the fat over a low heat for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown, then turn the heat up, season the chops with salt and pepper and sear on the meaty sides for 1 minute until golden brown
3
Transfer the pork chops to a baking tray and cook in the oven for 6 minutes, turning halfway through. Remove and rest whilst you make the rest of the dish
4
To make the pan sauce, wipe out any excess fat from the pan, add the butter, cracked black pepper, garlic and thyme and cook for a minute or two, then deglaze the pan with the cider
5
Reduce the cider by half, then add the pork stock. Simmer for 1 minute, then stir in the crème fraiche. Bring to the boil then reduce to the consistency of single cream
6
Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and blanch the sprouting broccoli for two minutes until just cooked through. Meanwhile, gently reheat the caramelised apples in a pan or in a low oven
7
Slice the pork chop into pieces and plate along with the apples and broccoli. Finish with the pan sauce
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Pork chop in a cider cream sauce with caramelised apples and purple sprouting broccoli

 
 

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