fixed this dish when the weather started to get cold. Our neighbor who had a vegetable garden trimmed all her basil plants and gave us some. Instantly, I thought of fixing pasta with pesto sauce. But my husband is a typical meat and potatoes guy and he needs to have a meat dish with his meals. I had several slices of lamb chops and rosemary (which I always grab when I buy lamb) on hand too.
Now my madness begins. First a make the pesto for the pasta minus the pine nuts. Then I divided the recipe in two and use the other half for the chops.
I love the traditional (back in the day) way of making pesto …. using a mortar and pestle. That’s how I made it growing up since we didn’t have a blender or a food processor. But when I get lazy, I use a blender to make the pesto paste.
This recipe could be used for pork chops, veal chops, lamb chops, chicken and turkey.
Here are some interesting facts about basil and rosemary. Did you know that basil has anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties? Basil contains exceptionally high levels of beta-carotene and Vitamin A essential for vision.
Rosemary also has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. But it also has anti-allergic, anti-fungal and anti-septic properties. It is rich in many B-complex group of vitamin, such as folic acid.
1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1 tbsp fresh rosemary (or 1/2 tbsp dried)
2 cloves garlic, whole
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3-4 tbsps extra virgin olive oil (pesto paste should not be to runny)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 cup breadcrumbs
4 thick cut chops (lamb, veal, pork, chicken breast or turkey breast)
olive oil for pan frying
Put all the ingredients (except the breadcrumbs, chops and olive oil) in a blender. Use the slowest setting (or pulse) to start with. Slowly drizzle the olive oil as you continue to “pulse”. To create a smooth paste, press “liquify” for a few seconds.
Add the paste to the crumbs. Dredge the chops in the herbed crumbs. Press down the herbed crumbs to make sure it sticks.
Heat olive oil in a large pan. Pan fry the chops for around seven minutes per side (for medium rare).
Serve with Pesto Pasta.