Easy Pork Chops

(Cook’s Illustrated)

4 bone-in pork rib chops or center-cut chops, about 7 ounces each and 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick, patted dry with paper towels
1 tsp vegetable oil
Table salt and ground black pepper
1/2 tsp granulated sugar

If using electric stove, turn burner to medium heat. Rub both sides of each chop with 1/8 teaspoon oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sprinkle one side of each chop evenly with 1/8 teaspoon sugar, avoiding the bone.

Place chops, sugared-side down, in 12-inch nonstick skillet. Using hands, press meat of each chop into pan. Set skillet with chops over medium heat; cook until lightly browned, 4 to 9 minutes. (Chops should be sizziling after 2 minutes, if not, turn the heat up a bit.) Using tongs, flip chops, positioning them in same manner. Cover skillet, reduce heat to low, and cook until center of each chop registers 140 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 3 to 6 minutes (begin checking temperature after 2 minutes); chops will barely brown on second side. Transfer chops to platter, tent with foil, and let rest 5 minutes; do not discard liquid in skillet. Turn the burner off.

Add any juices accumulated on platter to skillet. Set skillet over high heat and simmer vigorously until reduced to about 3 tablespoons, 30 seconds to 90 seconds; adjust seasonings with salt and pepper to taste. Off heat, return pork chops to skillet, turning chops to coat with reduced juices. Serve chops immediately, browned-side up, pouring any remaining juices over.

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