Chops with Salad

Recipes and photos courtesy National Pork Board, Beefitswhatsfordinner.com and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

4 thick-cut boneless New York (top loin) pork chops, about 1 1/2-inches thick

2 T. smoked paprika

4 1/2 tsp. hot pepper sauce, such as Tabasco, plus more for serving

1 tsp. cayenne pepper

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. onion powder

For salad:

2 C. cherry tomatoes, halved

1 cucumber, peeled and cut into ½-inch dice

1/4 red onion, halved and thinly sliced

1/4 C. fresh parsley, chopped

1/4 C. blue cheese salad dressing or more to taste

Salt and pepper In a small bowl, combine smoked paprika, hot sauce, cayenne, salt, garlic powder and onion powder, stirring to make a paste. Divide paste into two small bowls, with about 2⁄3 of paste in one bowl, and 1⁄3 in another. Arrange pork on a plate or platter and use a butter knife to thinly spread about 2⁄3 of the spice paste over both sides of the meat. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Prepare a grill to medium-hot heat and lightly oil the grate. Grill pork until the internal temperature reaches 145° (medium rare) to 160° (medium), 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer chops to a platter and spread remaining spice paste from second bowl on top, and set aside to rest 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the salad: In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, cucumber, onion, parsley and salad dressing, tossing gently. Add more dressing and salt and pepper to taste.

Serve chops with cucumber-tomato salad alongside. Serves 4.