We love roast pork chops – especially if they’re stuffed.

ShareWhen I hear or see the phrase “roast pork chops”, my heart starts beating faster and my breathing speed rapidly increases. Not only is pork one of the tastier meats for me, but it  is a very high quality protein with lots and lots of  vitamins and minerals, which is excellent for boosting our immune systems and keeping us healthy.
Pork provides a low fat meal, provided that it is trimmed. Pork is an ideal choice for for weight watchers and those  following a  healthy and balanced eating plan. Recent studies have shown that South African Pork is significantly lower in fat than many other countries and is even approved by the  Heart and
Stroke Foundation.

Our bodies need small but vital amounts of minerals to remain healthy. Pork is a very reliable source of some of these minerals:

Iron -Iron carries oxygen from the lungs to the brain and muscles in the body. It helps to build and maintain a healthy immune system, which helps our bodies to fight infections. The iron found in pork is heme-iron, which is more easily absorbed than non-heme iron (found in plant foods). 
Calsium, Potassium, Phosphorus and sodium keep our bones healthy and strong.
Zinc -Needed for optimal functioning of the immune system as well as wound healing and healthy hair and skin. 
Energy – Although we need to watch our consumption of fat, it  has to remain an important part of a balanced diet. It supplies the body with energy and protects the vital organs such as the kidneys.
Essential Fatty Acids and fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K. – Pork contains high amounts of  the good polyunsaturated fatty acids, but low amounts of  bad cholesterol and saturated fatty acids if you compare it with other meats. People suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes or heart health, can safely include about 500g of lean pork (divided into smaller portions) in their weekly eating plan.
We often eat  pork in the Timm household. Nothing beats a big old pork butt, slow-roasted in the oven,  until it is fall off the fork tender or a pork fillet stuffed with  porcini and sun dried tomatoes              Pork schnitzels all golden and crispy and de-boned pork neck braised with coriander and beer feature   on our menu at least once or twice a month.
This time I wanted to stuff some pork chops so I knew I had to ask the butcher for some extra thick cuts(2.5cm/ 1 inch).

Roast pork chops with macadamia nuts and sun dried tomatoes 
Ingredients
4 pork loin chops – 2.5cm/1in thick
olive oil
salt/pepper
For the stuffing
50 gr macadamia nuts
5-6 sun-dried tomatoes – marinaded in olive oil
fresh thyme
a tbsp fresh bread crumbs
salt/pepper
zest of 1 lemon
Preheat oven to 180C
Place all the ingredients for the stuffing in a blender and blitz until it is a chunky puree.Trim all the excess fat off the cutlets and make an incision on the side of the chops to create  pockets. Open the pocket and fill the cavity with some of the stuffing. Secure with a toothpick and repeat the process with all the chops. Rub some olive oil on the chops and season with salt and pepper. Heat some oil in a pan and brown the chops on both sides. Finish the roasting process in the oven  until your chops are cooked all the way through. About 20 minutes I would say……if the juices run clear when pricked with a fork, it is cooked.
I served these delicious roast pork chops with creamy mashed potatoes and sauteed mushrooms.

This is a very rich meal and definitely good for the weight conscientious amongst us, but I console myself with the fact that macadamia nuts macadamia nuts like all non-animal foods contain no cholesterol. But they are remarkable in the fact that their fat contains over 86% monounsaturated fatty acids.

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