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Ancho Chile Pork Chops with Pickled Pepper Relish

Photo: Caitlin Bensel

Serves 2 (serving size: 1 pork chop and about 1/2 cup pepper mixture)

Multicolored mini or baby bell peppers keep their texture but take on a fantastic acidity with a gentle quick-pickling technique. Instead of adding salt to the pickling liquid, stir it into the finished relish so no flavor is lost. The relish would also be delicious on barbecue pork sandwiches or hamburgers. Ancho chile powder is smoky with just a lick of heat. If you can’t find it, substitute regular chili powder and add a dash of ground red pepper. A cast-iron skillet is key for a quick, well-seared pork chop. Leave the pan on the heat for charring the snap peas.


  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups thinly sliced sweet mini bell peppers (about 5 oz.)
  • 1/4 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon ancho chile powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 (6-oz.) bone-in, center-cut pork chops (about 3/4 in. thick)

Nutrition Information

  • calories 329
  • fat 20.6 g
  • satfat 3.9 g
  • monofat 12.3 g
  • polyfat 2.3 g
  • protein 25 g
  • carbohydrate 10 g
  • fiber 3 g
  • cholesterol 75 mg
  • iron 2 mg
  • sodium 569 mg
  • calcium 46 mg
  • sugars 7 g
  • Est. Added Sugars 3 g

How to Make It

  1. Bring vinegar, 1/4 cup water, and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove pan from heat; add bell peppers. Let stand 15 minutes; drain. Combine peppers, parsley, 1 tablespoon oil, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a bowl.

  2. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Combine remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, chile powder, and cumin in a small bowl. Rub pork chops with remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil and spice mixture. Add pork to pan; cook 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until a thermometer inserted in the center registers 145°F. Top pork evenly with bell pepper mixture.