Italian Cooking in Iowa: Pork Marsala
I’m half-Italian, so I grew up eating a lot of Chicken Marsala and Veal Marsala — arguably the most traditional meats used in this buttery-sweet, mushroom-laden dish. However, a Marsala sauce lends itself well to any mild-flavored meat, so Pork Marsala is easily another good option (just not one I am in the habit of making). Since I’m now living smack in the heart of pork country, it seemed like high time to give Pork Marsala a try. This is my favorite Marsala sauce recipe, which I made here with thin, boneless, pork loin chops. Whatever meat you choose, a Marsala dish is easy and quick enough for a weeknight dinner, but tastes special enough for dinner guests.
4 pork loin chops, boneless chicken breasts, or veal cutlets, pounded thin
salt & pepper
2 Tbsp butter, divided
3 Tbsp olive oil, divided
2-3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 cups assorted mushrooms, sliced: button, baby bella, crimini
1/2 cup Marsala wine
1/4 cup low-sodium beef, chicken, or vegetable broth
1/2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Dredge the meat lightly in flour and immediately place in the hot pan. Cook the meat until lightly browned and cooked all the way through (about 2 minutes per side). Remove meat from pan and set aside. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1 Tbsp butter, garlic, and shallot to the pan and saute, stirring frequently, until the shallot turns translucent. Add the mushrooms and cook until they begin to soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the Marsala and simmer until liquid is reduced by half, scraping up any browned bits stuck to the pan as you stir. Add the broth and herbs and return to a simmer. Return the cooked meat to the pan, and heat through. Plate the meat, and whisk 1 Tbsp chilled butter into the sauce just before serving for a glossy texture and extra boost of flavor.