Sunday, August 10, 2014

NEW RECIPE: Pork Chops and Gnocchi in a Parsley-Sage Butter

© Constantine William Spyrou

I'm always looking for new culinary tactics and utilizing them in interesting new dishes. At the same time, I'm tasting different new ingredients and adding new ones that I enjoy to my repertoire. One such ingredient I've recently grown to love is Italian parsley. I originally just thought of it as a boring green garnish you'd find as a standard on many different dishes. However, I've begun to appreciate its flavor a lot more recently as an individual ingredient. Its sharp aromatic notes are great for cutting the richness or density of meats. 

I decided to test the power of parsley out in a compound butter. Since I was able to locate bone-in pork chops, I used those because of their deep flavor thanks to the bones, and pork is a dense meat that likes aromatics such as parsley and sage to balance it out. I made the compound butter and also used it as part of a flavoring for gnocchi. I used storebought fresh parmesean gnocchi, but any gnocchi you have will work for this dish. 

Recipe serves 3 people.


1 package gnocchi
3 bone-in pork chops
Salt and pepper to season
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 stick of butter
2 tablespoons grated parmigiano reggiano
1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
2 sage leaves, chopped into thin ribbons
1 clove garlic
Zest and juice of 1/2 lemon


1. Let the butter soften in a bowl before making the mix. Add in the chopped parsley and sage, then combine well. Then, grate the garlic and add the lemon zest, and thoroughly mix to get the liquid from the garlic mixed in as well. Season to taste, and mix once more. Refrigerate for at least an hour to let the flavors combine.

2. Slack out your pork chops to room temperature, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Ensure the seasoning sticks to the meat by lightly pushing down across the pork chops on each side to push the seasoning in.

3. Put your olive oil in a hot pan on medium high heat. Cook the pork chops for 2-3 minutes. Be sure to cook the back end by sliding each chop to the back and tilting the pan to get it cooked.

4. Turn the pork chops, and add in a tablespoon of your butter to the pan. Quickly spoon over the pork chops as it melts to ensure that the parsley and sage do not burn.

5. Cook the pork chops for 2-3 more minutes, then set aside to rest, pouring any butter in the pan over the top of the pork.

6. Bring a pot of water up to boil, season, and add some olive oil in. Cook you gnocchi to halfway to 3/4ths of the way done, then place them into a hot pan with olive oil. Turn each gnocchi over after a minute to ensure they crisp on each side.

7. Add in the compound butter, and stir to ensure all of the gnocchi are coated with the butter. Finish with lemon juice, and cook out for 30 seconds before taking the gnocchi off of the heat.

8. Grate the parmigiano reggiano over the gnocchi, and serve with your pork chops.

This dish is light and fragrant yet dense and hearty at the same time. It makes for a delicious meal with an intriguing balance of flavors that you have to check out sometime! This butter can also be used on vegetables, fish (especially salmon or trout), other pastas, and even to flavor your rice!

I hope you enjoyed this recipe! Let me know what you think and what you would change. If you make it at home, let me know how it turns out! Enjoy! =) 

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