"Stuffed" Pork Chops with Sausage and Apricots
- 8 thinly cut boneless pork loin chops
- Salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 3 turns of the pan, divided
- 1 cup chicken stock, divided, plus a splash
- 1 pound Italian bulk sausage
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
- 6 dried apricots, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves
- 2 tablespoons chopped sage leaves or 1 teaspoon dried sage
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Season chops with salt and pepper. Add 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil to hot skillet then add the chops and sear to caramelize the meat on each side, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer chops to a pan or casserole dish and add 1/2 cup chicken stock to help the meat remain moist while it finishes cooking just eyeball the amount. Loosely cover the dish or pan with foil before placing in the oven. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes as you make the stuffing.
Return pan to the stove and add another tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil. Add Italian sausage and crumble it as it browns. Add celery and onions and cook 2 or 3 minutes then add red bell pepper and apricots. Cook 2 minutes, then add parsley and sage and another 1/2 cup of chicken stock. Reduce heat and cook stuffing 5 or 6 minutes longer until apricots are tender and plump. Add a splash of chicken stock and 1/4 cup heavy cream to moisten stuffing.
To serve, remove chops from oven. Place 4 chops on individual plates or on a platter. Mound sausage and vegetables on first chop, then top with second chop and pour gravy down over the top of stacked chops and filling. The pan drippings may also be added to the gravy to stretch the amount.