Pork chops with spiced lentils

Matt Tebutt rubs spicy flavours into pork chops for serving with an equally spicy side dish of lentils
By Matt Tebbutt
Pork chops with spiced lentils
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: easy

Ingredients

For the pork

  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 8-9 black peppercorns
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 knob of ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • olive oil
  • 4 thick-cut pork chops

For the spiced lentils

  • 50 g unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp each ground coriander, turmeric and cumin
  • 1 small knob fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, left whole
  • 1 fresh red chilli, diced
  • 1/2 white onion, finely diced
  • 1 sticks celery, finely diced
  • 200 g dried Puy or Umbrian lentils

To serve

  • sautéed spinach
  • crème fraîche or soured cream

Method

1. For the pork: preheat the oven to 140C/gas 1. Heat a small, heavy pan, add the coriander seeds and dry-fry (without oil), tossing often until starting to colour. Remove and crush finely, along with the peppercorns, using a pestle and mortar. Mix in the garlic, ginger, turmeric and enough oil to make a stiffish paste.

2. Using a sharp knife, score the meat in a diamond pattern, making deep incisions into the flesh. Rub the marinade thoroughly all over the meat and into the cuts.

3. Heat a large heavy, non-stick pan, add the chops and fry for about 10-12 minutes, turning once. Put in a dish, cover and keep warm in the oven.

4. For the lentils: melt the butter in a frying pan and when foaming, add the ground spices and fry briefly to extract all their flavour. Toss in the ginger, garlic and chilli. Keep an eye on the pan to ensure the spices do not burn. Throw in the onion and celery and stir-fry for 5 minutes until softened and turning golden. Add the lentils and fry them in the mix for a few minutes. Pour in enough water to cover the lentils and simmer for 15-20 minutes until just cooked, adding a little more water if necessary. The lentils should retain their bite. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

5. Remove the chops from the oven and serve with the spiced lentils, sautéed spinach and a dollop of crème fraîche or soured cream.

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