4boneless pork loin chops, 1 to 1-1/4 lbs (see notes)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2medium pears, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1medium shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
1tablespoonfresh thyme leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried
2-1/2ouncesblue cheese, crumbled (we used Gorgonzola)
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Place the pork chops between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound them to an even thickness of about 1/2-inch.
Coat both sides of the chops with a bit of olive oil, season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Place an oven-proof frying pan large enough to accomodate the chops in a single layer over medium heat. Add the butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
Once the butter has melted, add the pears and minced shallot. Sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, then add the thyme. Continue cooking until the pears are tender, 3 to 4 minutes longer, then transfer the mixture to a small bowl and set aside to cool.
Return the pan to the stove, add a little more olive oil and increase the heat to medium-high. Add the chops in a single layer and cook for 1 minute per side. Remove the pan from the heat.
Add the Gorgonzola cheese to the bowl containing the sautéed pears and combine thoroughly. Spoon 1/4 of the mixture on top of each pork chop and place the pan in the oven.
Bake just long enough for the Gorgonzola to melt, 3 to 4 minutes (do not overcook).
Tips for Making This Recipe
Because today's pork is bred to be much leaner than it was years ago, it's important to choose cuts that have visible marbling throughout the meat. This is particularly important with boneless cuts like the chops in this recipe.That little bit of fat running through the meat is what produces a tender, juicy chop once cooked, so resist the temptation to buy any pork that looks too lean. You'll also want to leave that thin edge of fat around the edges of your chops. It can always be trimmed off at the table.