Roasted Fennel-Crusted Chops with Fennel and Beet Slaw and Fresh Ricotta
- 4 1 1/2-inch thick pork shoulder chops or bone-in rib chops
- 4 to 5 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 teaspoons fennel seed
- 1 teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 teaspoon granulated onion
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon oregano or marjoram
- Sea salt and black pepper
- 1 bulb fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced by hand or with mandolin
- 2 small fresh beets, any color, washed and very thinly sliced by hand or with mandolin
- 1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup citrus sections, oranges or grapefruit
- 1 cup fresh ricotta
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
- Crusty bread, such as ciabatta
Heat oven to 400°F.
Pat chops dry and rub with oil. Combine dried seasonings in a small bowl. Season chops liberally with salt and pepper then apply the spice crust to both sides. Arrange in a cast-iron pan or other roasting dish, roast 30-35 minutes until crust is crisp and pork cooked through.
Meanwhile, combine sliced fennel, beets, onions and coat with lemon juice and EVOO. Season with salt and pepper.
Combine fresh ricotta with thyme, salt and pepper.
Remove chops from oven and let rest a few minutes. Add bread to oven and warm.
Add citrus fruit sections to slaw salad.
Serve chops with pan juice over top, fennel salad with citrus alongside and mounds of fresh ricotta to mix into the slaw or slather on the warm bread.
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