Pesto-coated pork chops

    23 min

    Pork chops on a menu for lower blood pressure? Yes! Pork is about 50 per cent leaner than just a few years ago, which means it's lower in saturated fat as well. To keep chops succulent, top them with a homemade pesto.

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    Serves: 4 

    • 175g (6oz) wide noodles, made without egg
    • 85g (3oz) fresh basil leaves
    • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
    • pepper to taste
    • 2 tbsp plain dried breadcrumbs
    • 2 tbsp olive oil
    • 4 pork loin chops, 1cm (½in) thick, about 115g (4oz) each

    Prep:15min  ›  Cook:8min  ›  Ready in:23min 

    1. Preheat the grill to moderate. Cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet.
    2. Meanwhile, put the basil, garlic and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until the basil is roughly chopped. Add the breadcrumbs and process until incorporated. With the motor running, slowly add the oil through the feed tube. Set the pesto aside.
    3. Coat a large, heavy ovenproof frying pan and the grill rack with cooking spray or as little olive oil. Set the frying pan over high heat. Add the chops and sauté for about 1 minute on each side or until browned. Remove from the heat. Spread both sides of the chops with the pesto and transfer to the grill rack.
    4. Grill the chops for about 2 minutes on each side or until they are cooked through. Divide the noodles among four plates and top each with a pork chop.

    Some more ideas

    Use skinless, boneless chicken breasts or thighs in place of the pork chops. Sauté the chicken for about 5–6 minutes on each side.

    Health points

    *Pork is a good source of zinc and it provides useful amounts of iron as well as vitamins from the B group, particularly B1, B6, B12 and niacin.
    *Including garlic in the diet is thought to be beneficial for a healthy heart. Garlic may also be useful for clearing cold symptoms and chest infections.

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