Friday, March 11, 2011

Lemon and Herb Pork Chops

I've been experimenting a lot lately with traditional French cooking. I am French, after all, so I feel it should be my duty to enrich my kids with some classic French cooking. I can't have them growing up thinking the only real French foods they've ever had are french fries and french toast, that just isn't right. So, the first place I started looking for some classic recipes was my mom's collection of recipes. Her mother (my grandmother) was French-Canadian so my mom had a lot of great recipes from her, but most were for large family gatherings during the holidays, not exactly every-day type foods. So, I turned to where most people start looking when they think of French cooking: Julia Child. She's the master and her recipes are amazing.

So, one of the first recipes from Julia that I would like to share with you is actually pretty easy and simple, but very flavorful and delicious. This recipe is best made with boneless pork chops, but boneless chicken breasts would be good as well. To start, you need to make the marinade:

Lemon Juice and Herb Marinade

For every pound of meat....

1 tsp salt (I used kosher)
1/8 tsp black pepper (I used slightly more per pound and cracked instead of ground)
3 T fresh lemon juice (I also added about a 1/4 tsp of lemon zest)
3 T extra virgin olive oil
3 parsley sprigs, chopped
1/4 tsp dried thyme or sage
1 bay leaf
1 clove mashed or minced fresh garlic (I used double per pound)


Rub the salt and pepper onto both sides of the meat.

Mix the remaining ingredients in a bowl or plastic storage container. Add the meat and turn to baste in the marinade and coat well. Cover and let meat marinade in fridge for at least 2 hours (I highly recommend marinating for 6 or more hours--possibly over night, for best flavor). Turn meat in the marinade every couple of hours so they marinate evenly.

When ready to cook, scrape marinade off of the meat and pat meat dry with a paper towel (this is crucial). Then add 3-4 T canola oil to a heavy skillet and heat to almost smoking.

Cook meat for 3 to 4 minutes then flip to finish cooking on the other side.

Julia recommends serving this meat with garlic mashed potatoes. Enjoy!


  1. This looks amazing! I usually pop my meat into the marinade in a ziploc bag as soon as I get home from the grocery store and then into the freezer until I need it. I thaw it out before cooking. Do you think this marinade would work with that method? Freezing the meat in the marinade usually helps it absorb a lot more of the marinade, and I don't want it too strong.

  2. Bekki, I'm not sure if it would work well or not because I've never tried to freeze the meat in the marinade before. That's a great idea though! I will have to try doing that sometime when I buy pork chops. Sounds like a real time-saver! Does that method work well with other types of meat too?