Clementines aren't just for breakfast. This recipe for clementine and honey glazed pork chops is a great way take them from mornings to a splendid evening meal. Clementines first originated in China as an accidental hybrid of the mandarin. If you can’t find clementines, I’ve seen mandarin oranges under the brand name Halo, which will also work in this recipe. And if you’re in Florida, bags of small Florida tangelos are currently available.
I’ve probably told you the story of the first time I tasted a clementine. I was in line at a supermarket check-out counter one year during Christmastime and the man behind me had a box of clementines in his cart. The line in front of us was long and out of curiosity I turned to him and pointed to his box of clementines and asked, “Are those good?’”
With a rather surprise look on his face, he replied, “You’ve never tried clementines?” He reached into his box of clementines and took one and proudly handed it to me. “Try this,” he said, “I promise you that you’ll always remember the day you first tried a clementine.” And he was right - I always will remember my first clementine.
Another thing I’ve learned this year about clementines is that although they can tolerate being stored at room temperature for a few days, they hold up better in your fridge’s crisper drawer. To think, all of these years I’ve been storing mine at room temperature.
Simple rice with chopped parsley, recipe here, and green beans gremolata, recipe here, make a nice accompaniment to clementine & honey glazed pork chops.
Clementine and Honey Glazed Pork Chops
Adapted from Publix Family Style, serves 4
6 clementines, small mandarin oranges, or small tangelos, divided
½ cup honey
¼ cup champagne white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary, plus a few sprigs for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 8-ounce bone-in pork chops, 1 inch thick
To prepare the marinade, zest, then juice 3 clementines. You should end up with about 1 tablespoon zest and 6 tablespoons juice. In a medium bowl, combine clementine zest, orange juice, honey, vinegar, rosemary and ¼ teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
Place pork chops in a resealable plastic bag set in a shallow bowl. Pour marinade over pork chops, seal bag, and turn to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for 2 to 24 hours.
Preheat broiler. Remove pork from marinade. Transfer marinade to a small sauce pan and set aside. Quarter the remaining 3 clementines. (Our clementines were fairly large, so I cut them in eights.)
Place pork chops on a rack of an unheated broiler pan. (Cover your pan with heavy duty foil for easy clean-up.) Season both sides of the pork chops with more salt and freshly ground black pepper. Broil chops 3 to 5 inches from the heat 4 minutes or until the glaze darkens and any exposed parts of the pork chops turn brown. Turn chops over and add Clementine quarters to the pan. Broil 5 to 7 minutes more or until pork registers 145 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. If your chops are thick and start to burn on the edges, which ours did, remove from the broiler and bake in the oven at 350 degrees F until they reach 145 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer.
While the chops are cooking, heat reserved marinade over medium-high heat until boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, about 8 minutes or until reduced by half. To serve, spoon honey reduction over pork chops and broiled clementines. Garnish with sprigs of fresh rosemary. Boiled rice with chopped parsley and green beans gremolata make a nice accompaniment.
On another note, Larry of Big Dude’s Eclectic Ramblings and Chris of Nibble Me This are hosting their 6th Annual rendition of their Blogger’s Get-together at Larry and Bev’s house, Almost Heaven South, on their dock at Tellico Lake in Greenback, Tennessee. The final details are not complete, but the party will be held on Memorial Day weekend and the theme this year will be Tapas. If you’re interested in attending or want to know more, please contact Larry at Big Dude’s Eclectic Ramblings.
Unfortunately Meakin and I will miss this year’s event because we’ll be in the South of France, but in the past years we’ve attended every one of these blow-out events and can absolutely guarantee you that a great time is had by all and there’s absolutely no chance you’ll go away hungry. Plus it's lots of fun to chill out down by the dock and talk food with fellow bloggers. To prove the food is fantastic, here are two examples of previous get-togethers.
and a Crawfish Boil, link here.