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"My husband's favorite four letter word is...PORK!" says Rach. Needless to say, he loves this meal. Rach sautes thick pork chops, slices the meat and then coats it in a lemon-butter sauce with crispy capers. She serves this alongside whole grain pasta with brown butter and sage. It's a hearty and tasty combo that she says John "freaks out" over!
For more pork recipes from Rach, check out her Drunken Pork Roast and Pork Saltimbocca.
For the pork chops, season chops with salt, sugar and black pepper (if using) and keep in fridge several hours or overnight, uncovered. Pat dry and coat with oil. Preheat cast-iron skillet over medium-high, add the chops, brown all over and sear the fat on the sides, about 10 minutes.
Rest on board and reserve pan.
For the sauce, thinly slice off the yellow layer of zest, cut it into thin strips and chop. Remove and discard any remaining white pith from the lemon, then halve the lemon and remove the seeds. Roughly chop the flesh and combine with chopped zest.
Wipe pan, turn heat to medium low and add more oil, about 1/3 cup. Add capers and crisp them up, 3 to 4 minutes; some will pop open a bit. If you want to keep the capers super-crispy, remove them and reserve until plating when you can sprinkle them on top. Or you can leave the crispy capers in the pan, add the lemon, garlic and chilies or paste and continue to cook and stir 2 minutes. Add vinegar, then vermouth or wine and melt in butter. Remove from heat.
Cut pork from bones and slice. Add sliced pork to the lemon caper sauce and toss to coat.
For the pasta, bring a large pot of water to boil. Melt butter over medium heat. Add sage and garlic (if using) and crisp up the leaves. Remove garlic once browned and remove pan from heat once butter is lightly browned and fragrant. Cook pasta in salted boiling water. Undercook by 1 minute and reserve ½ cup starchy water. Drain pasta and return to the hot pan. Toss with brown butter, sage and pecorino cheese and reserved pasta water as needed.