Pesto-encrusted Pork Chops

So, I bought this tray of pork steaks (or boneless chops, whatever they're called) at Costco a while back, intending to do something with them.  I like pork, but I'm just not used to cooking it, so I was left at a quandary.  I wanted to do something with all this basil we have too, so I started poking around.  I found all kinds of recipes – garlic and basil. basil and garlic…you get the idea.  Basically, they all danced around, but never went there.  So I did.

Pesto-encrusted pork chops

So we should start by making some pesto.  Pesto is super-easy, but it really, really helps to have a foor processor.  I've got one of those mini-ones that isn't good for much more than making pesto, but it's earned it's spot on the counter for that.  Get one, and thank me later.  

So here's what I do for pesto. If you don't grow your own basil, get a bunch from the store.  If you do, and either way, you'll need about two cups of the stuff.  Set that aside and start with the pine nuts (1/4 cup).  Dump them in the food processor with a bit of olive oil and break them up.  Add the basil and 4+ tbsp garlic in, along with about 1/2c of olive oil and run the processor until the leaves are chopped rather smooth. Then add 1/2 of fresh-grated Parmesan (it actually does make a difference) and blend to a roughly-smooth texture (i.e., it should be thick).  Put the lot in a bowl and float some more olive oil on top, and let it rest for an hour or so.

Once that's all said and done, lay a good coat down on both sides of each chop, and cook them on the grill with an indirect heat – we don't want the flames charring this one.  Something around 8 mins/side and BAM, done.


So the shopping list:

Besides the pork chops, you'll want stuff to make pesto:

  • basil (at least two cups)
  • pine nuts
  • olive oil
  • garlic
  • parmesan cheese

Simple, no?