Broiled Pork Chops with Basil Butter and Summer Squash
Makes 4 servings
Photo: Alison Miksch; Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon minced shallot
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 pounds mixed summer squash, chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
4 (3/4-inch-thick) frenched pork loin chops
How to Make It
Stir together first 3 ingredients, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper in a small bowl. Cover and chill basil-butter mixture until ready to use (up to 48 hours).
Preheat broiler with oven rack 5 inches from heat. Toss together squash, next 2 ingredients, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper in a large bowl. Spread mixture in a single layer in a jelly-roll pan, and broil 10 to 12 minutes or until tender and lightly browned, stirring every 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl, and stir in 2 Tbsp. basil-butter mixture. Cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
Sprinkle chops with remaining salt and pepper, and place on a wire rack in an aluminum foil-lined jelly-roll pan. Top each chop with a heaping tablespoon of basil-butter mixture. Broil 8 to 10 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 155°. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Serve pork chops with squash mixture.
This is definitely really, really easy. It took maybe 20 minutes start to finish. After that, if you do not use enough salt, it will be bland. And, I'm not loving the texture of chops broiled. I think next time, I'm going to just throw the chops on the grill and dollop on the butter. I will also pulverize or mulch the basil and add garlic to make more of a pesto type of butter over a basil flavored butter. Furthermore, I really packed the 1/2 cup tightly with fresh basil leaves from my garden; next time, I'll chop the basil then see if it's 1/2 cup - seemed like a lot of butter to basil ratio.
I've made this recipe a few times, a couple times with just the basil topping on the pork chops, and then a veggie blend once. Due to not having enough summer squash I combined zucchini and green beans for an equivalent amount, and cooked 9 pork chops instead of the four. So, I like this recipe for it's wide versatility. The basil mixed with the veggies was just about to-die-for, and the basil topping was still spreadable over 9 chops without doubling. Granted, the topping was on the thin side, but doable. I had 8 very happy guests with this meal, and the previous times that I cooked only the chops proved very satisfying meals as well.
My basil butter came out so salty even though I measured the salt. Also, the basil burned while broiling. I will make again but omit salt in butter and add basil butter after broiling or at the very end.
Such a nice versatile butter. What a great use for the abundant tomatoes, basil and squash of summer. While this tasted great, the vegetables definitely made more than four servings, probably more like 6. I'll probably halve that portion of the recipe in the future.
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