Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Pan-Roasted Brined Pork Chop

Pan-Roasted Brined Pork Chop


½ cup Kosher Salt
½ cup Sugar
1tsp. Juniper Berries
½ tsp. Black Peppercorns
1 hade of garlic, halved crosswise, plus 2 unpeeled cloves for basting
2 large sprigs Fresh Thyme
1 2-inch thick Bone-in Pork Chop (2 ribs; about 1 ¼ lb.)
2 tbsp. Canola Oil
3 tbsp. Unsalted Butter
Course Sea Salt


Bring 2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan.  Add kosher salt, sugar, juniper berries, peppercorns, halved head of garlic and 1 thyme sprig; stir to dissolve salt and sugar.  Transfer to a medium bowl and add 5 cups of ice cubes.  Stir until brine is cool.  Add pork chop; cover and chill at least 8 and up to 12 hours.  Set a wire rack inside a rimmed baking sheet.  Remove chop form brine; pat dry.  Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large cast-iron skillet.  Cook chop until beginning to brown, 3-4 minutes.  Turn and cook until second side is beginning to brown, about 2 minutes.  Keep turning chop every 2 minutes until both sides are deep golden brown, 10-12 minutes total.  Transfer skillet to a pre-heated 450 degree oven and roast chop, turning every 2 minutes to prevent it from browning too quickly, until an instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into center of meat registers 135 degrees, about 14 minutes.  (Chop will continue to cook during basting and resting.)  Carefully drain fat from skillet and place over medium heat.  Add butter, 2 unpeeled garlic cloves and remaining thyme sprig; cook until butter is foamy.  Carefully tip skillet and, using a large spoon, baste chop repeatedly with butter until butter is brown and smells nutty, 2-3 minutes.  Transfer pork chop to prepared rack and let rest, turning often to ensure juices are evenly distributed, for 15 minutes.  Cut pork from bones, slice and sprinkle with sea salt.

Note:               You will need to ask your butcher to cut this pork chop special for you.  Also, if you can’t find juniper berries.  It won’t ruin the dish to skip them but they do add a great flavor to this recipe.

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