I initially connected with my boyfriend's family (the Herreras) over our mutual love of eating. Their adoration of keeping their Dominican heritage thriving through their home cooking satiated my desire to learn about different cultural backgrounds through my natural love of food. I've never been a fan of pork chops — at least until I tried Mik's mom's chuletas fritas in her Washington Heights home several years ago.
Technique tip: If you're behind on dinner, keep your chuletas in a 200 F oven until dinner is served.
Swap options: You can replace grated garlic for garlic powder if you need. You can also substitute lemon juice for lime juice or apple cider vinegar. I've had this dish with tostones, chimichurri, pickled red onions and avocados, though it would also taste stellar with arroz con gandules.
Add lemon juice, garlic, adobo, sazón, oregano, olive oil, water, salt and pepper to gallon-sized zip-top bag. Place pork chops into the bag, seal the bag closed and shake everything around until marinade is generously coating the protein. Marinate in the fridge for at least 4 hours.2.
Once marinating is done, remove pork chops from the fridge and let the protein come to room temperature on your kitchen counter for at least 30 minutes.3.
Remove pork chops from marinade and place in cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven along with the remaining marinade (if marinade produces little to no liquid, feel free to add 1/4 cup water to skillet). Turn on stovetop to medium heat.4.
Cook pork chops for 6 minutes on each side, then remove to rest until most of the marinade boils off (the protein should feel firm to the touch before removing).5.
Add canola oil to pan, turn down the heat to medium-low and return pork chops to pan.6.
Sear pork chops until they develop a caramelized crust (about 10 minutes per side).7.
Remove from heat and let rest at least 5 minutes before serving.