Yen Can Cook: Brine Pork Chop
I’ve tried to whip up a pork chop dinner for several times and ended up had overcooked shoe-leather and tough pork chops. That was really turned me off to continue trying until I found this interesting method of brining the meat before cooking.
Brining is a way of marinating and adding moisture to lean meat. The meat is soaked in a mixture of salt and water for a few hours or days before cooking. You may add other flavoring ingredients to the brine, such as herbs and spices. In the days before refrigeration, brining was used as a way to preserve meat (think ham and pastrami), but now it’s a popular way to add flavor and moisture to lean meats. Brining makes meat juicier and improves its texture.
For the brine
3 cups cold water
2 1/2 tablespoons table salt
Mixed herbs (optional flavoring)
For the pork chops
Pork chops (1 – 1.5 inch thick)
Salt & pepper
1) Brine the pork chops: Bring 3 cup of the water to a boil, add the salt and optional flavorings, and stir to dissolve the salt. Cool brine completely, then place the pork chops in a shallow dish and pour the brine over top. The brine should cover the chops, cover the dish and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 6-8 hours.
2) Remove chop from brine; pat dry. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a skillet, cook the pork chop until both sides are slightly brown.
3) Preheat the oven to 180, transfer the pork chops to the oven tray or you may transfer the whole skillet to the oven if you are using cast-iron or oven-proof skillet.
4) Turning the pork chop every 2 minutes to prevent it from browning too quickly until it is totally cooked. (about 15-20 minutes depends on the thickness of the pork chop and temperature of the oven)
5) Serve with your favourite side dish. Mashed potato will be an ideal choice, refer the recipe HERE.