Winter Comfort Food: Roasted Pork Chops and Potatoes

February 3, 2020

The winter months offer a great opportunity for enjoying comfort foods with family and friends. Roasted pork and potatoes is a classic from the comfort food repertoire of many cuisines, including Greek cuisine. The traditional recipes feature lemon and garlic which add health benefits and phytonutrients to the meal. Serve the roasted pork and potatoes with seasonal cooked vegetables and/or greens. Salads also add freshness and vital nutrients to any meal, even in the cold, dark winter.

Roasted Pork Chops and Potatoes

8 bone-in pork chops

Greek sea salt

Freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

4-5 small to medium potatoes, peeled and halved

1 lemon

4 garlic cloves, smashed

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Season pork chops with salt and pepper to taste. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat add the olive oil and heat until it shimmers. Sear the pork chops until golden on both sides, about 4 minutes for each side. Work in batches so as not to overcrowd the skillet. Place the seared pork chops in a large roasting pan with the potatoes seasoned with salt and pepper to taste, then add the juice of the lemon, the garlic cloves, and roast in the preheated oven until the pork chops are cooked to at least 145 degrees on the meat thermometer for medium and the potatoes are tender.

Red Cabbage and Carrots

1 small to medium red onion, chopped

1 small head red cabbage, shredded

2-3 medium carrots, chopped

3 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

Greek sea salt

Freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Heat a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the olive oil and heat until it shimmers, add the onion, and saute until translucent. Add the cabbage, carrots, salt and pepper to taste, and continue cooking, stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes. Add the vinegar, cover and allow to cook until the cabbage is slightly tender but still has a little crunch to it. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Cabbage Salad

1 small head green cabbage

1 small red onion

1 small-medium apple

3 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Greek sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Using a mandolin, thinly shave the cabbage, onion, and apple. If preferred, a food processor with the shredding attachment may be used. Place the sliced cabbage, onion, and apple in a salad bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper to taste. Toss the salad until the ingredients are well-distributed and costed with the dressing. Serve immediately. The cabbage salad goes well with roasted pork dishes.

Roasted Vegetables

2-3 medium-large parsnips, cut in 2-inch pieces

2 carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 medium red onions, cut into quarters

3-4 medium potatoes, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 medium sweet potatoes, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 sprigs fresh rosemary, about 3-4 inches long or 2 teaspoons dried rosemary

1/2 teaspoon Greek sea salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

4 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Wash and prepare the vegetables, cutting them into pieces about the same size. Place in a roasting pan and toss with the rosemary, salt, pepper, and olive oil until evenly coated. Spread the vegetables out in a single layer in the pan and roast in a preheated 400-degree oven for 1 hour or until the vegetables are tender and lightly browned, stirring about half way through the cooking process.


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