Low Sodium Pork Chops with Tomato and Fennel
When the leaves start to change and there is the change of seasons from summer to fall there is nothing more I love than hearty dishes. Pork chops definitely fit the bill. You have to be careful with pork chops that are found at most grocers as pork is now processed similar to chicken, where it is injected with sodium and dipped in saltwater prior to freezing. Fresh pork sourced locally or from a reputable butcher is key. Fresh pork chops are the star of this low sodium pork chops with tomato and fennel dish.
Savory And Garden Fresh
Minnesota summers mean tons and tons of ripe bursting tomatoes fresh off the garden vine. We love our tomatoes when the plants survive the bunnies. Heirlooms and Romas are some of my favorites for cooking. This dish would also work incredibly well with green tomatoes or tomatillos for a Spanish flare. When it’s hot I love a great Gazpacho, but when it cools, you can’t beat these chops.
This dish calls for fennel. If you are not familiar with fennel, it is typically sold as a bulb with stalks like a short celery. It is yellowish white and will smell and taste a bit like anise or licorice. It is a major ingredient in the liqueur, absinthe. It is part of the carrot family, is very rich in vitamin B, and is supposedly very beneficial for your eyesight like carrots. It originated in the Mediterranean and is a staple in Greek and Indian cuisine.
From The Cookbook
This recipe is in my new cookbook – The Easy Low Sodium Diet Plan & Cookbook. It is available on Amazon or in Barnes and Nobles Stores. You can also ask at your local book store for them to order it. The pictures of this dish are from the amazing Shea Evans, an exceptional food photographer. Check out some of his work at Sheaeveans.com.
The Recipe For Low Sodium Pork Chops With Tomatoes And Fennel
A hearty dish that will warm you to the core.
- 1 clove Garlic cut in half lengthwise
- 4 5 oz. Boneless Pork Chops trim any visible fat
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil extra virgin, divided
- 2 bulbs Fennel thinly sliced, should be 2-3 cups
- 1 large Onion thinly sliced
- 6 cloves Garlic minced
- 2 14 oz. cans Tomatoes (no salt added) or 3 1/2 cups diced fresh tomatoes
- 1 1/2 tsp Oregano
- 1 tsp Rosemary
- 2 tsp Black Pepper fresh ground
- 1/4 cup Basil (fresh) chopped
Rub the cut sides of garlic halves on both sides of the chops. Heat 1 tbsp of the olive oil in a large dutch oven or high-sided roasting pan over medium high heat.
Add the pork chops and quickly brown on both sides, 3-4 minutes per side. Transfer the chops to a platter to keep warm.
To make the sauce, reduce the heat to medium and add the remaining tbsp of olive oil. Add the fennel and onion and saute for 4 to 5 minutes.
Add the minced garlic and cook for one minute more. Add the tomatoes, oregano, rosemary, thyme, and black pepper and bring to a gentle boil.
As an option here, you could add risotto, arboreal rice, couscous, tabbouleh, white, brown, or wild rice to make this a full meal.
Add the pork chops back to the pot. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook for 10 minutes.
Uncover and cook for an additional 5 minutes or to desired doneness.
Serve garnished with fresh chopped basil.
This dish has a main and full serving of vegetables. Serve with a simple side salad, or over rice. See steps on where you could add rice during the cooking process. You may need to add a bit of water depending on how much rice you add (which should be enough to serve 4 people.