Smoked Pork Chops with Sautéed Sage + Peach Risotto

My favorite meals are usually those that evolve organically...not those that come about when I have to put food on the table whether I feel like it or not. It's on nights when I have a bit of time to putter, and change my mind as I go along, that the best meals happen.

The other evening was one of those nights.

I started it out buying ingredients for one meal and ended up creating two. (I guess that's what they call two for the price of one?) Thank God, because I nearly die every time I think about how much I end up spending on dinner for just the two of us.

{Umm...might it have something to do with the armloads of wine?}

Peaches are in season, so they unintentionally--but oh, so appropriately!--crept into the menu. Sauteed slowly in butter, simmering to a delicate, soft sweetness in leftover Prosecco sparkling wine. I never would have imagined combining them in risotto, but along with some sweet onion and sage, it was just right on the plate with smoked porkchops.

I may have had to use a few too many pots, but layering the flavor is what it's all about. Stay tuned for meal number two...


2 smoked pork chops {uncooked pork chops work wonderfully here too}
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 peach, stone removed and cut into 1/4 slices
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup white wine or prosecco
salt + pepper to taste
4 ounces guanciale, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1 medium onion, sliced into thin half-moons
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
1 cup risotto rice {canaroli works well for this dish}
4 cups chicken broth, warmed
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bring the pork chops to room temperature. Season lightly with salt and pepper. In a medium sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and sear the pork chops until lightly browned on both sides. Remove to a plate and cover with foil until ready to finish cooking.

In the same pan, add the butter and melt over medium heat. Add the peaches and sugar and cook until they are lightly browned. {Optional: add 1/2 cup white wine or prosecco and continue to cook until most of the liquid is absorbed and the peaches are soft.} Remove from the heat into a bowl and set aside until ready to use.

In the samé saute pan, add the guanciale and cook over low heat until the fat is rendered and the pieces are lightly browned and crisp. With a slotted spoon, remove onto a paper-lined plate.

Toss the onions, sage and garlic into the rendered fat in the same sauté pan. Cook over medium heat until the onions are soft and caramelized. Add the rice and sauté for another minute until well-coated. Add the remaining white wine or prosecco and cook until most the liquid is absorbed. Season with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Adding a ladle or two at a time, cook the rice over medium high heat, stirring constantly until the rice is fully expanded and has an al dente texture. The rice should be loose, but not runny. Stir in the Parmesan cheese. Gently fold in the peaches. Top with the guanciale. Serve immediately.

Serves two.

Buon appetito!
copyright 2009 Alisa Barry


sharon said...

YUM! i had not thought about peaches in risotto but i will try this! what an inspiration! thank you. i have used left over champagne (or sparkling wine) in risotto but not prosecco. i am opening a bottle of prosecco tonight with some grilled pizza so if we have any left .... cheers!

ps honestly, i do think wine adds to the monthly food bill, but i am not for sure ;)

Dennis said...

Wow. This sounds awesome. Thanks for posting. Going to try this one.
NIce blog work here.