Here’s an easy question: who doesn’t want a quick yet tasty weeknight meal? Well, this is one. I have to admit though, it took me a minute to grasp the idea of cornichons in a sauce over my chops. I had to do a little research on this.
Turns out the joke was on me. Apparently this dish is a variation of what is known in France as Côtes de Porc Vigneronnes (Grape Growers’ Pork Chops). This provincial dish is typical fare served after a hard day of grape harvesting. Essentially the dish is pork chops in mustard-cornichon sauce. Added are some stock and Italian parsley.
This variation uses tarragon as the featured herb and mixes in some apple juice to sweeten up the briny cornichons and balance out the tangy mustard. I added a little white wine because I couldn’t help myself.
If you are like me and use a brine on your chops there is some advanced planning here – at least 4 hours or so. I put the chops is a basic salt/sugar brine in the morning and they were ready to go when I got home from work in the evening.
I am always looking for ways to dress up pork chops. Any new idea gives me another excuse to cook chops.
Recipe after the jump…
Pork Chops with Tarragon Sauce and Cornichons
Adapted from Bon Appétit: November 2008
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, cut into 6 pieces, divided
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
4 3/4-inch-thick pork rib chops
5 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon, divided
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup sliced shallots (about 2 large)
1/4 cup thinly sliced cornichons (gherkins)
2 tablespoon whole grain mustard
1/2 cup low-salt chicken broth
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup apple juice
1. Melt 1 tablespoon butter and olive oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat.
2. Season chops with salt and pepper Add chops to skillet; cook until browned and cooked through about 5 minutes per side. Remove chops, cover to keep warm.
3. Add shallots to same skillet; saute until soft. Stir in 2 teaspoons tarragon, cornichons, garlic, mustard, broth, wine, and juice. Boil until sauce thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in remaining tarragon.
4. Whisk in 4 tablespoons butter, 1 piece at a time. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer chops to plates. Spoon sauce over