Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Meyer Lemon
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, very thinly sliced
4 fresh bay leaves, or 6 dried bay leaves
2 Meyer lemons, 1 thinly sliced and 1 halved
4 bone-in, center-cut pork chops, 6-8 oz. (185-250 g.) each
Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a large cast-iron or other heavy-bottomed frying pan, heat the olive oil, garlic and bay leaves over medium heat. Saute until the garlic is lightly golden and the oil is infused with the aroma of garlic and bay leaf, about 5 minutes. Transfer the garlic and bay leaves to a plate and set aside. Return the pan to the heat and add the lemon slices. Cook, turning once, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to the plate with the garlic and bay leaves.
Season the pork chops with salt and pepper. Arrange in the pan and raise the heat to medium-high. Sear until nicely browned on the bottom, 2-3 minutes. Turn the chops and cook until browned on the second side, 2-3 minutes longer. Squeeze the lemon halves over the chops and turn to coat them with the juice. Return the garlic, bay leaves and lemon slices to the pan and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook until the chops are cooked through, 3-4 minutes longer. The pork chop should spring back but still feel tender if gently pressed with a finger, and the center should be very slightly pink.
Transfer the pork chops to a serving platter and spoon the pan juices, along with the lemon slices, over the top. Serve right away. Serves 4.