March 16, 2021
Can you guess which meat is the most commonly consumed in the world? Beef? Chicken? Nope. The answer is pork. In North America we actually consume quite a bit less pork than other countries, and the truth is we are perhaps overlooking a lean, tasty and convenient protein gem.
Why Choose Pork?
For decades pork was known as “the other white meat,” but in fact, pork is considered a red meat. While it lacks the rich or gamey flavor we associate with some red meats, like beef and lamb, pork can offer the benefits traditionally seen in red meat, while offering the cooking versatility of a white meat. Unlike some other meats, we consume pork in many forms: cooked, unprocessed, and cured, and it’s extremely versatile.
Looking beyond bacon: pork is a healthy choice.
While it is hard to deny how tasty bacon can be, lean pork is your best option if you are looking for a healthy high-protein pork option.
Leaner cuts of pork have a protein content around 26% of flesh weight, meaning that there are around 26 grams of protein in every 100 grams of cooked pork. Pork’s protein content is on par with many other animal-based protein sources, and offers a similar range of vitamins and minerals. Pork contains every amino acid, which aids recovery, muscle maintenance and growth for younger people. Like many meats, pork contains saturated and unsaturated fats, which can be beneficial in assisting with healthy brain function and maintaining a satiated feeling.
Pork, unlike many other meats, contains a high level of thiamine, or Vitamin B1, which is necessary for maintaining healthy bodily function. Pork also contains selenium, which plays a role in maintaining our metabolism, and zinc, which supports brain function and the immune system. Women, and those prone to anemia, can use pork as a source of vitamin B12 and iron.
Pork can be a good option for those hoping to improve physical performance and muscle mass, as it is an excellent source of protein and beta-alanine. Beta-alanine, an amino acid, is used by the body to produce carnosine, an acid that is believed to improve physical performance due to its effect on muscle fatigue and recovery.
Eating Pork: Cuts & Cooking
Pork is an exceptionally versatile meat that can be used in many dishes, and prepared many ways. While we all might think of bacon or pork chops, pork is also the basis of great tacos, stir-fries, sausages, barbecue, and so much more. Next time you are considering purchasing chicken or beef for a meal, try pork as a substitute – you won’t be disappointed.
The classic pork chop may not be flashy, but it offers all of the benefits of pork in a lean, inexpensive cut.
This week try French Pork Loin Rib-In chops
Pork chops, like the beautiful French Pork Loin Rib-In chops, are a great way to bring variety to your diet if you are tired of eating chicken breasts.
This week we’re exploring the many ways to enjoy this tasty cut. Whether you want something fast, family friendly, or something to feed the whole crew, we’ve got you covered. Try our Honey Pork Chop with a fresh salad, or this Blackened Pork Chop with mashed potatoes, green beans, and Cajun butter. Or get a taste of spring on the Greek islands with our Mediterranean Pork Chop with tangy tzatziki and served with lemon roasted Brussel sprouts and potatoes. Make It Tonight!
A Note on Cooking
Just like nearly all other meats, pork should not regularly be consumed raw. The suggested internal temperature for cooking pork is 160°F.
Mediterranean Pork Chops with Tzatziki and Lemon Brussels
4 bone-in pork chops
4 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp Italian seasoning
6 tbsp canola oil
4 tbsp corn starch
1 lemon (juice and zest)
2 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
1 steamer bag Cal & Gary’s Brussel Sprouts
1 cup fingerling potatoes
1 cup chicken stock
1 container store bought tzatziki
salt and pepper
Preheat your oven to 425°F.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
Place a baking dish with canola oil in the oven to pre heat for 10 minutes.
Blanch potatoes in boiling water for about 5 minutes. Do the same to the Brussel sprouts. Strain the brussels and potatoes and pat off excess water with paper towel. Let cool and cut the brussels and potatoes in half. Toss in corn starch and then throw in hot baking dish. Season with salt pepper. When potatoes start to crisp after approx. twenty minutes add in chicken stock and lemon juice. Finish cooking for another twenty minutes or until most of chicken stock has evaporated and coated potatoes.
While your potatoes are in the oven season your pork chops with olive oil and Italian seasoning.
Pre heat your pan on medium high heat and cook pork chops until nicely browned on both sides and cooked through approx. 5 minutes per side.
Serve pork chops with spoonful of potatoes and brussels and top with a dollop of tzatziki and lemon zest.
Although it’s pretty tasty on its own, most meat definitely benefits from some extra flavour, but it’s all about getting the balance right.
Now that spring is nearly here, with summer just around the corner, that means that burger season is nearly upon us.
There is nothing else quite like bacon. It has that distinctive rich, welcoming aroma when cooked, and that crispy texture and umami flavor when eaten.