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Cherry Balsamic Pork Chops with Herbed Polenta
by Jamie Vespa on Wednesday July 6, 2016
Cherry Balsamic Pork Chops with Herbed Polenta

Cherry balsamic glazed pork with grilled zucchini and blistered tomatoes over herbed polenta. This delicious meal is bursting with flavor and ready in only 30 minutes.

  • 1 lb pork loin chops, sliced thin
  • ⅓ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 8-10 pitted cherries, halved
  • ⅓ cup fresh basil
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes
  • 2 medium-sized zucchinis, sliced at a diagonal
  • Pinch of sea salt and pepper

**Herbed Polenta**

  • 1½ cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 1½ cups water
  • 1 cup polenta
  • 3 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp garlic, finely minced
  • ¼ cup each freshly chopped basil and parsley
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • Pinch of black pepper
  1. Begin preparing polenta by pouring the water and milk into a medium size saucepan and bringing to a boil. Lower the heat to medium and slowly whisk in the polenta. Cook, stirring frequently, until the polenta is soft and thick, about 15 to 20 minutes. Once the liquid is absorbed, stir in the parmesan cheese, garlic and herbs and season with salt and pepper. If the polenta seems a little thick you can add a tablespoon more of milk or water.
  2. While the polenta is cooking, begin preparing the pork. In a glass measuring cup mix together the balsamic vinegar, honey and water. Season pork with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  3. Heat a very large skillet over high heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. When the skillet is hot, add the pork in a single layer and allow it to cook for 2-3 minutes, so it can get nice and caramelized. Flip and cook another 2-3 minutes, or until the pork is browned and just getting crispy on the edges. Lower to medium heat and pour in the balsamic mixture, sliced cherries and basil. Allow to simmer until the sauce coats the pork, about 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Heat a separate skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat with 1 tbsp of olive oil and add zucchini. Season with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and saute until soft and golden. Transfer to a plate and turn up to high heat. Add another tbsp of olive oil.
  5. Add the cherry tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Cook the tomatoes without stirring for 2 minutes. After 2 minutes toss the tomatoes and cook another 1-2 minutes or until the tomatoes are blistered.
  6. To serve, divide the polenta among 4 plates or bowls. Top with one pork chop and a few cherries. Divide zucchini and blistered tomatoes evenly among plates. Top with additional balsamic sauce (from the pan) and garnish with additional herbs and/or parmesan. Eat!
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Serves: 4 servings

Jamie Vespa, MS, RD, LD/N, is a former TGH dietitian who is now assistant nutrition editor at Cooking Light magazine. You can find more of her recipes on TGH Health News and more recipes on her blog, Dishing Out Health.