Slow Cooked Pork Chops with Michigan Cherries Recipe

Slow Cooked Pork Chops with Michigan Cherries Recipe

Here is my latest creation from the Kid Planet kitchen.    The cool thing is that I prepared it in the late morning.  At dinner time, the kitchen was clean and dinner almost served itself.  Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but there was no last- minute chaos putting a meal on the table for a family of six.

My slow-cooked pork chop recipe calls for Michigan tart dried cherries, apricots and apples, but you can experiment with the fruit if you don’t have the ingredients on hand — 2 cups of fruit total is what you’ll need.   Pears, peaches, raisins, cranberries, or a any variety of apples would work.  Granny Smith apples seem to be the best option for pork.   The kids really like this recipe because the fruit gives the dish a sweet flavor.

A butcher once told me to always buy the bone-in chops because when you cook them, the flavor will be much better.   You can also use boneless chops  if you must or a pork tenderloin would be even better.

If you don’t have apple juice or prefer a more savory and less sweet sauce, you can try substituting chicken broth.

A word of caution:  If cooked properly, the meat might just fall off the bone.  The nature of the recipe makes smaller bones hard to see.  Parental guidance is recommended when serving to youngsters.

Here’s the recipe:

Slow Cooked Pork Chops with Michigan Cherries

  • 8 pork chops
  • 3/4 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 Cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped apples (not too small)
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots sliced in half
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries (from Michigan if you can get them)
  • 1/2 cup of white wine  (if you like it sweeter…use more apple juice)
  • 1 medium onion chopped  (I also tossed in a green onion for color)
  • 2 celery stalks — chopped
  • Canola or olive oil for browning the chops
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Get out your crock pot, a frying pan, and your finest cutlery.  Let the show begin:

Wash the pork chops and pat dry.  Trim off any visible fat.  Season the chops with salt and pepper.  Heat some oil in a frying pan and brown the chops on medium heat for a few minutes per side.  Set aside when browned.    In the meantime add all of the remaining ingredients in the crock pot and set the chops on top.  Crank it up to high for the first hour and than switch to low for 4-5 hours more.

The meat should become very tender.  It’s done when the meat is falling off the bone.  If you don’t have a bone, then you are out of luck.   Just kidding.  It’s done when the meat pulls apart easily.  Cook up some white rice or serve with potatoes.   The sauce will be thin.  I just pour it over the chops.   If you want a thicker sauce you can take out the sauce and add a small amount of cornstarch.   But if you do, you’re on your own.  I hate cornstarch and rarely use it.

This is a great cooler weather recipe.   When the weather heats up, then it’s all about slow grilling baby back ribs and the crock pot gets placed on the back burner.   NOT LITERALLY.  Do not burn your house down, people!

Enjoy!  Peace Out!  – John