Tasty new approach to chops

Australian chef, and co-host of My Kitchen Rules, Pete Evans’ latest book advocates a low carbohydrate diet as a way to achieving a sustainable, healthy lifestyle long term.

Low Carb, Health Fat suggests that by reducing sugar and starch-based carbohydrates in our meals and instead combining in-season vegetables with a moderate amount of protein, healthy fats and fermented foods, it will "unlock" the body’s potential for healthy weight loss, improve  energy levels and support brain function.

There are recipes for snacks, soups, main meals, sides, treats and drinks.

Along with recipes, Evans also gives advice on what are high carbohydrate foods and low ones, what are healthy fats and menu plans.

Photo: supplied
Photo: supplied

Spiced pork chops with apple and rhubarb salsa
Serves 4

I remember as a kid, Mum used to cook pork and lamb chops quite regularly - and I loved cutting through the fatty meaty parts to get at all that flavour and texture.

I encourage you to go out and get some wonderful fatty pork or lamb chops and fire up the barbie or frying pan and bring the fat back to your dinner table.

You can team your chops with any salad or veges you like, but for something fancy try this rhubarb salsa.


4 pork loin chops (about 220g each)
3 Tbsp coconut oil or good-quality animal fat, melted
1 large handful of dill fronds
1 large handful of coriander leaves

Apple and rhubarb salsa

5 rhubarb stalks, peeled and cut into 5mm dice
1 green apple, peeled, cored and cut into small dice
1 spring onion, finely chopped
1 ½ Tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp honey (optional)
80ml (1/3 cup) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
1 Tbsp chopped coriander leaves
sea salt

Spice rub

2 Tbsp fennel seeds
1 Tbsp whole aniseed
1 Tbsp ground piment d’Espelette (see note)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp sea salt


To make the rhubarb salsa, blanch the rhubarb in boiling water for 10 seconds, then plunge into ice-cold water. Drain well, then mix with the remaining ingredients in a bowl. Set aside to allow the flavours to develop for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the spice rub, place the fennel seeds and aniseed in a spice grinder or mortar and grind to a powder. Transfer to a bowl and mix through the remaining spice ingredients.

Preheat the oven to 180degC.

Brush the pork chops with half the coconut oil or fat, then coat thoroughly with the spice rub.

Heat a large frying pan over high heat, add half the remaining coconut oil or fat and brown two pork chops for about 2 minutes on each side.

Wipe out the pan and repeat with the remaining coconut oil or fat and pork chops. Transfer the chops to a baking tray and roast in the oven for 2 minutes, flip the chops over and return to the oven to roast for a further 2-3 minutes (for medium) or until cooked to your liking. Allow to rest for 3 minutes before cutting into 2cm slices.

Place the pork on serving plates or a platter. Season with salt and serve with the rhubarb salsa, dill and coriander and a drizzle of olive oil.

Note: Piment d’Espelette is a type of chilli, with a warm fruity flavour and a mild chilli bite, that comes from the Basque region of France. It can be purchased from some delis, fine food stores or online. If you can’t find it, hot paprika is a perfect substitute.


Photo: supplied
Photo: supplied
Indian-spiced lamb chops with mint chutney
Serves 4 

There is something so uniquely Australian about lamb chops on the barbecue that always brings a smile to my face.

In the olden days, we would team them with some tomato sauce, but these days I love to have this mouth-watering mint chutney as the accompaniment, as it brightens up the dish and has the most tantalising flavour.

Mint and lamb are a match made in heaven.


8 lamb chops
2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
lemon wedges, to serve
toasted cumin seeds, to serve

Crispy curry leaves

150g coconut oil
4 sprigs of curry leaves
sea salt

Mint chutney

2 large handfuls of mint leaves
1 large handful of coriander leaves
2 garlic cloves
2 green chillies, deseeded and chopped
1 tsp finely grated ginger
1 tsp honey (optional)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil


½ Lebanese cucumber
200g coconut yoghurt 
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp ground coriander
1 Tbsp chopped mint leaves

Indian spice marinade

2 ½ tsp coriander seeds
2 ½ tsp cumin seeds
2 ½ tsp sea salt
3 tsp turmeric
2 ½ tsp garam masala
¼ tsp chilli powder (or to taste)
3 garlic cloves, grated
1 ½ Tbsp finely grated ginger


To make the crispy curry leaves, melt the coconut oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Cooking in batches of two sprigs at a time, fry the leaves for 4-5 seconds until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Season with salt and set aside.

To make the mint chutney, place the mint, coriander, garlic, chilli, ginger and honey (if using) in a food processor and blend until finely chopped. Add the lemon juice, olive oil and 1 tablespoon of water and continue to blend to a fine paste. Add a little more olive oil if it’s too thick. Season with salt.

To make the raita, cut the cucumber in half lengthways and use a teaspoon to scrape out the seeds, then finely dice the cucumber.

Combine the cucumber with the yoghurt, cumin, coriander and mint in a bowl and season to taste with salt.

To make the Indian spice marinade, toast the coriander and cumin seeds in a frying pan over medium heat for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool, then grind in a spice grinder or using a mortar and pestle. Mix the ground spices with the remaining marinade ingredients in a large bowl.

Add the lamb chops to the marinade. Massage the marinade into the lamb chops until well coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or, for best results, overnight.

Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Cook the lamb, turning occasionally, until browned and cook to your liking (6-7 minutes for medium-rare). Set aside to rest for 5 minutes.

Place the lamb on a large platter and pour over the pan juices. Serve with the mint chutney, raita and lemon wedges on the side, then sprinkle over some toasted cumin seeds. Garnish with the crispy curry leaves.  

Get it

• Low Carb, Healthy Fat, by Pete Evans, Macmillan, $40



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