Pork Chop Vesuvio For Two

one pan pork chops

There’s a popular dish here in Chicago called chicken Vesuvio. An Italian-American dish which is hearty and perfect for this time of year when the weather is starting to turn cooler. It has a luscious sauce that consists of olive oil, butter, white wine, lots of garlic, lemon and oregano, it’s so delicious you’ll be tempted to drink it on its own! The best version of chicken Vesuvio ( in my opinion and many others) uses bone-in chicken, although you can find it made with boneless chicken breasts as well.

This same technique of cooking the meat and making the sauce can also be applied to bone-in pork chops like I’ve done here.

pork potatoes and peas

Another distinctive feature of Vesuvio dishes is the addition of potato wedges and peas which take on all the amazing flavors from the sauce.

pork and savory sauce

Although this recipe for pork chops is for two you can easily double or triple it, and of course the same technique can be used for bone- in chicken. When making it with chicken you’ll  just need to make sure you have enough sauce depending on how many chicken pieces you use.

For this recipe I used two nice sized Frenched bone-in, center cut pork loin chops, this could definitely be a date night meal or a slow Sunday dinner.

pork chops Italian

All you need to serve along side this is maybe a salad or another green vegetable, and that will do it!


5.0 from 1 reviews
Pork Chop Vesuvio For Two
A special technique in the cooking process ( Vesuvio) creates this specialty dish very popular in Chicago at many Italian American restaurants.
  • 2 bone in Frenched, center cut pork loin pork chops
  • 2 russet potatoes, medium size scrubbed clean with skin on then cut into quarter wedges
  • 1 heaping cup of peas
  • ¾ cup chicken broth
  • ¾ cup dry white wine
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 6 garlic cloves, 3 whole and 3 thinly sliced
  • 1 to 2 Tablespoons of dry oregano
  • 3 tablespoons butter lightly rolled in flour (which helps gives the sauce a very light thickening)
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 lemon cut into wedges
  • parsley for garnish
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil
  1. On a sheet pan drizzle the potato wedges with olive oil, salt and pepper then roast them at 400F til golden brown, then set aside.
  2. In an oven proof skillet drizzled with olive oil season the chops with salt and pepper and brown on both sides until almost done cooking, remove and set aside.
  3. In the same oven proof skillet add a drizzle of olive oil then add all the garlic and saute until lightly golden and starts to smell.
  4. Pour in the broth, then the wine, turn up the flame and let it reduce a bit.
  5. Add the lemon juice and oregano then whisk in the butter to make it glossy and thickened, if you need a little more butter go ahead.
  6. Place the chops into the sauce along with the meat juices, spooning that sauce all around.
  7. Arrange the potato wedges in the pan as well as the peas and lemon wedges.
  8. Simmer everything together making sure pork chops are done with a meat thermometer.
  9. I like to finish mine off under the broiler to give the whole dish a nice golden finishing color.
  10. Garnish with the chopped parsley.




Pork Chops Marsala

pork chops and marsala

Sweet Marsala wine sauce is like nectar of the gods, it transforms simple chicken, veal and beef into something extraordinary, and now I’m here to tell you it does exactly the same for pork, in fact pork chops marsala is becoming my new favorite.

marsala wine

The second the Marsala wine splashes into the pan your kitchen will smell absolutely amazing, the aroma is deep, rich and bold and as it simmers down it gets even better. It doesn’t take much time at all to get this flavorful meal on the table so it’s really good for mid week as well as for guests, the other bonus is everything goes into one pan!

mushrooms and onions

You can serve this with angel hair pasta, it’s divine with garlic mashed potatoes, or if you prefer no carbs at all try it along side sautéed spinach or kale in garlic and olive oil. Which ever way you choose you can’t go wrong!

Dollops of mascarpone cheese gets whisked into the pot with the pork chops and Marsala, it thickens the sauce to the perfect consistency as it slowly cooks down, the end result is a sauce so rich and creamy that you’ll want to drink it!

The mascarpone really takes this dish over the top.

pork marsala

Pork chops Marsala is so full of flavor, the pork is tender and juicy, the sauce is creamy, it comes together quickly and you know what? The presentation is so elegant! Whats not to like?

Gather up all these ingredients and make this as soon as possible, this is what I call pure comfort food!


Pork Chops Marsala
  • 2-4 pork chops
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 yellow or red onion cut into rings
  • 1 box of crimini mushrooms left whole, stems removed
  • ¾ cup sweet Marsala wine
  • ¾ cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
  • fresh thyme and parsley
  1. Sprinkle chops with salt and pepper, add to a heated skillet with 1 tablespoon of melted butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil, remove when brown.
  2. Add remaining oil and butter, brown your garlic and onion rings, remove.
  3. Add mushrooms and saute till all juices evaporate then add Marsala, deglaze pan and reduce by half.
  4. Add broth and a couple sprigs of thyme and let that reduce.
  5. Add chops and all juices back in the pan along with the mascarpone cheese, whisk in until melted, then cover and simmer until chops are cooked through and sauce has thickened.
  6. Garnish with chopped parsley and thyme.



An Interview with Mary Ann Esposito of Ciao Italia

For many years I’ve enjoyed watching Mary Ann Esposito on public television, whether she was cooking in her studio or taking her show on the road to Italy, I always admired her down to earth no fuss approach to cooking. Mary Ann consistantly proves that with just a few quality ingredients we can all prepare delicious Italian cuisine at home with out difficulty.

Mary Ann Esposito is the author of Ciao Italia Five Ingredient Favorite: Quick and Delicious Recipes from an Italian Kitchen, and the creator and host of the long running PBS series Ciao Italia, celebrating it’s 20th anniversary in 2010. She is also the author of eleven other successful cookbooks, including Ciao Italia Slow and Easy and Ciao Italia Pronto!

Her new book draws on the Italian culinary tradition of simplicity. Her recipes are quick, easy, and economical without sacrificing any flavor!

Recently Proud Italian Cook, ( that would be me) was given the opportunity to ask Mary Ann a few questions, hope you enjoy!

Can you share with us some of the food highlights that you and your family enjoyed together over the holiday season?

Every year I begin making cookies on Oct 12, the traditional Columbus Day; by Christmas I have MANY different kinds that are wrapped and given out to friends and strangers as well. I also make the traditional panettone bread that we serve on Christmas morning and we make over 500 ravioli between Thanksgiving and Christmas to serve as the first course on Christmas day. For Christmas Eve, I always do a buffet spread.

This year you’re celebrating 20 years of hosting your PBS series Ciao Italia, what has been the key to your success?

Approachabillity and connection with the audience and drawing them in by making food that is doable, authentic and good.

Can you walk us through a typical day in the life of Mary ann Esposito from start to finish?

Exercise early in the morning, eat a good breakfast, work in office on email and on shows coming up, film segments of the series, do voice overs, make personal appearences, (not every day), Spend time on writing next book, blogs, articles for magazines, etc. Prepare dinner; spend time with husband.

Who influenced you the most, early on in your career?

My mother, a dietician and two native born Italian grandmothers both in the food business. They were three wise and wonderful women who cooked extremely well.

What do you consider as your defining moment professionally?

The first airing of the series Ciao Italia on national public television

What is your absolute favorite comfort food?

Ice cream

Name some ingredients that you can’t live without.

Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, extra virgin olive oil, pasta, pancetta, garlic, lemons, and gutsy red wine.

What is the motto or advice that you try to live by?

Don’t settle for mediocrity in anything you do!

Flipping through her new book I instantly saw one recipe I wanted to try, Mary Ann’s,”Cotolette di Maiale al Pistacchio” which translates as “Pistacchio-Dusted Pork Chops“. I love pistacchios, and paired with the earthy flavor of fresh rosemary sounded like a perfect match to use together as a coating for chops. I got all my ingredients together and in no time it was on the table! The chops were crispy with an amazing flavor.
Ingredients are:

2 large eggs
1/4 cup of finely minced fresh rosemary leaves
Fine sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper
4 bone-in pork chops
1 cup of natural pistacchio nuts, shelled, ground to a powder. I used my food processor for this.
Olive oil

Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Lightly beat the eggs in a bowl with the rosemary, salt, and grinding of black pepper.
Dip each chop then coat with the pistacchio dust and set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a stovetop-to-oven saute pan large enough to hold the chops without crowding them. I used my heavy cast iron skillet above.
Brown the chops on both sides, then slide the pan into your oven and bake until internal temperature reaches 160 F.

* Note*: Don’t be in a hurry to brown the chops, allow them to cook sufficiently on one side before flipping them over.
They’re ready to turn when the outer edges begin to brown.

Buon Appetito!

Visit the official website of Ciao Italia with Mary Ann Esposito here, and also The Ciao Italia blog here.