Today's dinner for two looks gourmet, it tastes gourmet and it's easy on your wallet -- under $6 easy.  That's $3 a person for a delicious restaurant-style meal.  Now that's what I call budget friendly!

Lemon-Basil Pork Chops
Total Time: 25 minutes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes

What you'll need
2 boneless pork chops
3/4 cup Italian style bread crumbs
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
zest and juice of 1/2 lemon  
2 tablespoons olive oil 

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. 
2. Combine breadcrumbs, basil, salt, pepper and lemon zest in a shallow bowl. 
3. Add lemon juice to a separate shallow bowl.

4. Dip pork into lemon juice, then into breadcrumb mixture, pressing breading into both sides of the pork. 
5. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Saute pork until both sides are browned, about 5 minutes. 
6. Place pork chops on a roasting pan.  Roast uncovered until pork registers an internal temperature of 160 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, about 10 minutes. 
7. Let pork rest for 5 minutes before serving. 
The side dish
I'll be serving the Lemon-Basil Pork Chops with a side of Italian Zucchini and Yellow Squash.  Since the vegetables require a longer cook time than the pork chops, I prepare the zucchini and squash ahead of time and place them in the oven at the same time I roast the pork chops.  This way the vegetables end up being done just as the rest time for the pork chops is complete.  

Italian Zucchini and Yellow Squash 
Total Time: 20 minutes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes

What you'll need
3/4 zucchini, thickly sliced
3/4 yellow squash, thickly sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil 
shredded parmesan 
red pepper flakes
salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Place zucchini, yellow squash and olive olive in a Ziplock bag.  Shake well until zucchini and squash are evenly coated in oil.  Season with salt and pepper.
3. Spread vegetables on a baking sheet.  Roast for 10 minutes. 
4. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes.  
5. Serve with a side of Creamy Aioli.  Enjoy!
Recipes adapted from Cuisine Tonight Quick & Easy Italian Magazine 
In case you missed how to make the Creamy Aioli from yesterday's post, here it is again. 

Creamy Aioli 
Total Time: 2 minutes
Prep: 2 minute
Cook: 0 minutes

What you'll need
1 tablespoon lemon juice 
1/2 cup mayonaise 
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic 
1/4 teaspoon paprika

1. Stir together mayonnaise, garlic, paprika and lemon juice.  Mix well.  Serve.

03/17/2013 14:44

I just made this dish and had to alter the crumbs a little but it was so good!!! Thanks for posting.


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