Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Pork Chop Express.

The pork chop has a really bad reputation.  Often cooked to death until all that is left is a burnt dry mouthful of sawdust. Dry pork is disgusting but it's not the pork chops fault.  It's the human that thinks it's okay to commit chuleta de cerdo asesinato (pork chop murder).  Look, as long as you're not buying your meat from a shady back alley pork vendor (or grocery store factory farm) you don't have to worry about getting sick if the pork isn't cooked to 170F degrees.  Here's a trick that can be very forgiving on your lack of cooking prowess.  Brine the meat over night and then if you slightly over cook the pork it will still be juicy.  Brine is easy.  Equal parts salt and sugar (1 cup) and enough water (1 gallon) to cover overnight.

The next day after brining I made a rub of smoked paprika, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, allspice and salt and pepper.  I then added a little olive oil to turn it into a paste.  The bone-in pork chop was coated in the spice mixture and marinated for about 2 hours.  I put a saute pan over medium high heat and cooked the pork chops about 4 minutes per side until just cooked through (or until you reach a little under 150F).  Let the meat rest after cooking.  It should be removed from the hot pan and covered with foil and left the hell alone for a minimum of 8 minutes.  Cutting into meat that doesn't rest will bleed out all of the delicious juiciness inside.  Resting the meat allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat making it juicy and tender. To the pan with all the yummy brown pork bits I added a little chicken stock and butter to release the fond (stuck brown bits) and make a spicy yummy sauce.

For a side dish I made a potato and zucchini galette.  It's super easy.  With a mandolin (if you don't have one, go buy one) slice the peeled yukon gold potatoes and zucchini into super thin discs.  In a saute pan, rub the bottom with butter to keep the galette from sticking.  Make an overlapping spiral layer of potato.  The an overlapping spiral layer of zucchini.  Then lightly season with salt and pepper and sprinkle a thin layer of grated manchego cheese.  The a layer of potato, then zucchini, etc until the saute pan is full.  Sprinkle bits of butter over the top and bake at 350F for about 40 minutes.  Stick a knife into it to make sure it's cooked all the way through.  Cover the pan with a plate and flip it out onto the plate. Delicious and impressive.  Cut out slices like a pizza pie and serve with the tasty smokey pork chops.  Enjoy. xoxo


Oxford said...

I have been reading your food blog and have really enjoyed it. As a fellow foodie, I have a blog about my quest for the ultimate hamburger, I wanted to share this link and project that I have been following as I think they have an very interesting idea for a short film that will appeal to foodies.

A team of documentary short film makers is making a film about the regional foods which are disappearing from our grocery store shelves. Once, the grocery store reflected the foods and culinary heritage of each region of our country. There was a time that Coors beer was not sold east of the Mississippi River, and Moon Pies only existed in the South. Small regional food companies are being bumped from the store shelves, and we are losing these food traditions.

These are those foods that maybe your grandparents had in their pantry and you refused to eat. Things (and these are real) like mudfish in a jar, sauerkraut juice, and canned snake. They are looking for input on regional foods in your area, like those strange food items on the top shelf that you have no idea how they are used or what to cook with them.

The film will include calling the makers of these unique foods and learning the history and reason behind why mudfish is available in a jar. Then they will have a big food tasting offering volunteers the chance to taste these items and give their feedback.
I hope you can suggest possible regional foods or ask your readers. You can learn more about the project on their website

Nancy Lewis said...

Well spoken! I'm very guilty of chuleta de cerdo asesinato on a regular basis. I made a great pork chop about a year ago, but haven't been able to match it since. I have some pork cutlets I got at Trader Joes. How would this recipe translate to a smaller cut?
~Nancy Lewis~

Violet Séverine said...

Oxford. Thank you, your film project sounds great.

Nancy- For thinner cutlets you can still do the brine, and when you make the spice rub just use less. They should be lightly coated. They cook really quickly so in a med-high pan quickly sear each side for 1-2 minutes. Let them rest covered in foil 5 min. Let me know how they turned out! ;)

F. Pian! said...

that hunger ...


Violet Séverine said...

F, Pian! Yes, The hunger!!! ;) xo

Sharon said...

I just discovered brining a short time ago! What a difference it makes. Love your blog. 'nuf said.

Violet Séverine said...

Yes, brining is a miracle technique to know. It's makes proteins taste so very delicious and juicy. ;)