Posted on Jun 30, 2014 | 2 comments
Growing up, pork chops were one of my least favorite family dinners. Coated in Shake n Bake and cooked, and cooked until they were so firm a steak knife would bow as you sawed through them, it was one of the few meals I wouldn’t fight my brother for seconds on. They ranked only slightly higher than hobo dinners, yet, just like those horrid foil packets of sliced kielbasa and mushy vegetables I dreaded, the chops required a vat of Ranch dressing to make them swallowable. Of course, this was before the USDA revised the temperature guidelines for cooking pork. The new rule-of-thumb is 145 degrees and 3 minutes resting time, which results in one juicy, tender chop. Voilà:
Speaking of revisions, did you know pork cuts recently underwent a renaming process? I had no idea, until I started searching for this month’s North Carolina Pork Council Blog Network featured cut of pork: the Porterhouse Chop, formerly known as the pork loin chop. I found this handy reference image on the Pork Be Inspired website:
For these chops, I was shooting for big, bold flavors and juicy meat — something a wee bit crazy to put the chops of my childhood to shame.
Combine marinade ingredients in a square baking dish. Add chops, tossing to coat, cover, and refrigerate for up to 8 hours.
Remove chops from fridge, and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Once hot, remove chops from marinade and add to pan. Cook for approximately 3 minutes, then flip and cook 3 minutes more, or until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. Remove from pan, tent loosely with foil, and rest for 3 minutes.
Optional salty finishing sauce: double the marinade recipe, reserving half. Transfer reserved marinade to a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, boil rapidly for two minutes, then remove from heat.
Serve chops naked, or topped with marinade reduction, pickled red onions, and fresh cilantro.
Disclaimer: as a member of the North Carolina Pork Council Blogging Network, I was compensated for the cost of pork used in this post.