Feleena made Pesto Packed Pork Chops for her Valentine's Day dinner. Her husband, Jason, loved them! We asked Feleena to share the recipe.
Feleena's Pesto-Packed Pork Chops
3 Tbsp. crumbled feta cheese
1tsp. minced garlic
4 – 5 Tbsp. refrigerated pesto
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. pine nuts, toasted
½ tsp. each ground red pepper
2 Tbsp. jalapeno jelly
½ tsp. ground red pepper, celery seed & crushed fennel seed
1 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
4 pork loin chops or boneless pork loin cut 1 ¼ inches thick
¼ tsp. crushed dried thyme
fresh basil leaves (optional)
¼ tsp. ground cumin
For the filling, in a small bowl stir together feta cheese, 2 tablespoons of pesto and pine nuts. Set aside. For glaze, in a small saucepan melt jelly over low heat. Stir in the remaining 2 to 3 tablespoons of pesto and the balsamic vinegar; heat through. Set aside.
Trim fat from meat. Make a pocket in each chop by cutting horizontally from the fat side almost to the bone or the opposite side. Spoon filling into each pocket. If necessary, secure the opening with a wooden pick.
For rub, in a small mixing bowl combine garlic, black pepper, red pepper, celery seed, fennel seed, thyme and cumin. Rub evenly onto both sides of meat.
In a covered grill arrange preheated coals around a drip pan for indirect grilling. Test for medium heat above the pan. Place shops on the grill rack over the drip pan. Cover; grill for 35 – 40 minutes or till juices run clear, turning once and brushing occasionally with glaze the last 10 minutes of grilling. Garnish with basil, if desired. Makes 4 servings.