It is ABSOLUTELY frigid outside and I am losing my mind. I’m totally desperate for Spring weather, so I decided to make a very Spring-ish meal for dinner. I received lots of tasty carrots in my CSA this week but the idea of doing a mix of roasted root veggies or using them in soup just wasn’t doing it for me. I knew I wanted something bright and light.
I found a recipe online which called for tomatillos on top of a roasted celeriac root steak and said “Hey, why not carrots?” The sweetness and almost caramel-esque quality of the roasted carrots accents the tart and acidic salsa so perfectly. Paired with a juicy pork chop, this meal is absolutely divine. —Kylie Thompson
Prep Your Ingredients: Preheat oven to 400ºF. Remove the husks from the tomatillos and discard. Run the tomatillos under warm water to remove the outer sticky layer. Roughly chop the tomatillos. Finely chop the red onion and the jalapeño. Rinse the cilantro and pick the leaves from the stems and chop the leaves. Peel the carrots and cut into 2 inch pieces on an angle. Season the pork with salt and freshly cracked pepper.
Make the Salsa: In a small bowl, combine the tomatillos, onion, jalapeño, all but a pinch of the cilantro, and the oil. Season with salt and pepper and chill for at least thirty minutes.
Roast the Carrots: While the salsa is chilling, heat a tablespoon or so of vegetable oil in an oven-proof skillet over medium high. Once hot, add the carrots and cook for about 5 minutes until browned on the bottoms. Flip once and then place the skillet in the oven. Cook until carrots are fork-tender and browned on the edges, about 20 minutes.
Make the Pork: Once the carrots are finished, remove from the skillet and keep warm in a separate bowl. Wipe out the skillet and heat up a small amount of oil over medium high. Once hot, add the pork chops and cook without moving for about 5-6 minutes or until the pork is golden brown. Flip and cook for an additional 4 or so minutes and then cover and reduce the heat slightly to avoid burning. Cook until a thermometer reads 140º. Remove the chops from the skillet and allow them to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Plate it Up: Place one pork chop on each plate and spoon a serving of carrots next to it. Top with the tomatillo salsa and a the remaining cilantro. Enjoy!