From the Chef's Kitchen: Pork Chops with Spring-Pea Risotto & Garlic Cream

Exclusive recipes, shared only with Pittsburgh Magazine, from some of Pittsburgh's best restaurants and chefs. This entree comes from the kitchen of Casbah in Shadyside.
Pork Chops with Spring-pea Risotto and Garlic Cream

photo by chuck beard


Prepare sauces and greens ahead of time and hold warm. Sauce can be made the day before. Have risotto in progress when you begin to cook the chops. Purchase demi-glace in advance.

Pork Chops
4 12-ounce
pork loin chops
2-4 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
d’Artagnon demi-glace

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. If grilling, lightly rub chops with oil; season with salt and pepper and grill to desired doneness. If pan-roasting, season dry with salt and pepper.
Heat heavy skillet to high heat, add oil and place chops in skillet. When well-browned on the first side, turn and brown until ready on the second side. Place pan in 425-degree oven and allow to finish to desired temperature.

Place a pile of risotto on a plate. Place a portion of greens next to it. Place finished chop atop greens and risotto. Sauce around with garlic cream.
Nape with d’Artagnon demi-glace (available at Giant Eagle Market District stores in the specialty meats case).

Serves 4.

Spring-Pea Risotto
About 1½ quarts chicken stock, brought to a boil and kept hot
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup minced
yellow onion
1 cup Arborio rice
1 cup shelled fresh,
raw peas
1 tablespoon
butter, to finish
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated
1 pinch chopped parsley

Heat butter and oil in a wide, heavy pot over low heat. Sweat onions until soft. Add rice and cook, stirring to coat the grains with butter until opaque, 3-5 minutes. Add ½ cup hot stock and stir until liquid is absorbed. Be careful to stir regularly so the risotto does not scorch. Continue adding stock in this fashion until rice is cooked al dente. Risotto should be a little loose, not soupy.  Add peas, butter, cheese and parsley. Adjust salt and pepper.

Roasted Garlic Cream
2 heads garlic
1 cup inexpensive olive oil
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped

Break heads into individual cloves, leaving the cloves unpeeled. Place the cloves in a heavy pot and cover with the oil. Bring to a simmer over low to medium heat. (Caution: Garlic cloves can pop if heated too quickly.) When oil begins to bubble, reduce heat and allow the garlic to cook for 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the mixture to cool.

Strain the garlic through a fine strainer and reserve the oil. When cooled, gently peel cloves. Place peeled cloves in a fine strainer and allow to strain further.
In a nonreactive pot, reduce cream by ¼ over low heat. Add drained garlic cloves and bring mixture back to a simmer. Remove from heat and purée. Add chopped thyme.


1 pound greens (mustards, kale, collards, dandelion, endives or a mixture)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves, sliced
Ground black pepper

Stem, chop and wash greens. Drain well. Heat olive oil in pan. Add garlic and cook until white. Add greens and cook until wilted. Season with pepper as necessary.

229 S. Highland Ave., Shadyside; 412/661-5656, Read more about Casbah in our 2017 Best Restaurants feature.

Categories: Eat + Drink Features