The October 2011 issue of Real Simple provides recipes for four weeks of easy dinners. Some I wouldn’t want to try (salami and Brussels sprouts pizza – no thank you) but several are very good, including Pork Chops with Roasted Beets and Oranges. Pork chops are quickly pan fried and served with beets and oranges tossed with arugula (three of my favourite things). I cheated a little bit on the prep, in that I thought peeling and cutting up beets before roasting them would be very messy. Instead, I roasted the whole beets earlier in the day, then peeled them, cut them into wedges and kept them in the fridge until dinnertime. I then warmed them through in the microwave; you could also add them to the oranges while they are roasting. I also added a little feta to the salad. Be careful not to overcook the chops, or they will become tough.

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Season pork chops with oregano, thyme, salt and pepper

Toss roasted beets and oranges with arugula; I also added feta cheese

I served the chops and vegetables with roasted mini potatoes

Everything in this recipe is natural, so no need to find additive-free ingredients.


1 pound beets, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch wedges (to roast whole beets in advance, see directions below)

4 tablespoons olive oil

kosher salt and black pepper

2 oranges, cut into large chunks

6 cups baby arugula (5 ounces)

4 bone-in pork chops (1 inch thick; about 2 pounds total)

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried thyme


To roast whole beets, wrap them individually in foil, place on a baking sheet and roast at 400 degrees for about an hour. Large beets may take longer to cook through. Unwrap beets and insert a sharp knife to ensure they are tender all the way through. When beets are cool enough to handle, rub off skins with a paper towel. Cut peeled beets into wedges and refrigerate until needed.

If cooking the beets according to the recipe, heat oven to 450° F. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the beets with 3 tablespoons of the oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Roast until beginning to soften, 13 to 15 minutes. Add the oranges to the baking sheet and roast, tossing once, until the beets and oranges are tender, 15 to 17 minutes more (if you have pre-roasted the beets, warm them in the microwave or oven and add at this stage). Add the beets and oranges to the arugula and toss to combine .

Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the pork with the oregano, thyme, and ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until browned and cooked through, 7 to 9 minutes per side. Serve with the beets and oranges. Serves 4.

From the October 2011 issue of Real Simple