Maple-Shallot Pork Chops with Spiced Couscous
When you’re shopping for lean pork, just remember the word “loin” -- as in center cut loin chops, boneless loin chops or tenderloin. Then create a savory autumn meal by pairing pork with a sweet maple syrup and shallot sauce and serving it alongside spiced couscous. Pork is rich in essential B-vitamins, zinc and high-quality protein. Cinnamon, cayenne pepper and cumin all contain disease-fighting antioxidants. Use whole wheat couscous for a fiber boost.
Makes 6 servings (one pork chop + 3/4 cup couscous)
6 center cut loin pork chops (about 6-7 ounces each and 3/4-inch thick)
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons canola oil, divided
6 ounces shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
3/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 cup natural apple juice
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 box (10 oz.) plain couscous
1 cup natural apple juice
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon canola oil
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1. In a medium saucepan, bring apple juice, water, salt and canola oil to a boil.
2. Stir in couscous and spices, cover, remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes (or until pork is done). Fluff couscous with fork before serving.
3. While couscous cooks, heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.
4. Add shallots, cooking just until shallots start to soften.
5. Remove shallots with a slotted spoon to a separate dish.
6. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil to hot skillet, add pork chops and brown about 2 minutes on each side.
7. Lower heat to medium, add maple syrup, apple juice and reserved shallots.
8. Cover and cook about 5 to 6 minutes, or no higher than 155 - 160°F with instant-read thermometer.
9. Serve pork chops with couscous and spoon maple-shallot sauce over dish.
Nutrition information (per serving)
44 g protein
76 g carbohydrates
12 g fat (3 g saturated)
80 mg cholesterol
190 mg sodium
71 mg calcium
3 mg iron
440 IU vitamin A
5 mg vitamin C
2.5 g fiber
Kim Galeaz is a registered dietitian and owner of Galeaz Food & Nutrition Communications based in Indianapolis and Jacksonville, Fla. As a culinary-nutrition consultant, writer and spokesperson for the food, beverage and agriculture industry, Kim is passionate about blending great taste with good health in all her culinary creations.