Time: 40 minutes
Prep: 15 minutes
Active time: 20 minutes
Simple food always requires the best ingredients, since you’re not gonna goop it up with some rich sauce. You want a good, heritage breed chop here. Tomatoes need to be ripe and firm. This is the occasion to pull out the good olive oil. Those will make or break the dish, which otherwise couldn’t be more simple. This was crafted to go with the Cantine Elvio Tintero Rosso, but will go with any of this month’s reds or rosés.
2 1 to 1½ inch thick bone-in pork loin chops
½ Cup kosher salt
2 Tbsp ground black pepper
1 tsp dried or 2 tsp fresh minced herbs of
2 large tomatoes of different colors, or one
mixed cherry tomatoes, cut into ¾ inch
1 small sweet onion, sliced thin
¼ Cup semi-soft cheese (I used a beer-
washed Belgian farmhouse cheese, but
even Port Salut will work fine) coarsely
Salt and pepper
2 Tbsp fruity white wine vinegar, or add
1 tsp of sugar or honey to a regular white
1.5 Tbsp neutral vegetable oil
1.5 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Pat the chops thoroughly dry. Mix the salt, pepper, and herbs, and apply generously to all sides of the chops. Yes, that’s a lot of salt. It’ll be fine, you’ll see. Let sit at room temperature for at least 20 minutes, preferably 30 or 40.
Combine the tomatoes, onion, cheese, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl and toss to combine. Add the vinegar and toss again, letting sit at room temperature until serving.
Preheat the oven to 450º. Heat a cast iron or other thick skillet over high heat until smoking. Remove most of the salt mixture from the chops and place them in the skillet, not touching, for three minutes. Flip and put skillet into the oven for two minutes, or until the chops reach 140º on an instant-read thermometer. Remove from skillet and let rest at least five minutes.
Add vegetable oil, olive oil, and chopped parsley to the salad and stir until well combined. Rest the chops on the plated salads so that the juices from both combine, and dig in.