I had never thought of brining pork chops before I cook them before but after another recent successful turkey brining experience at Christmas , I though I would try it with pork. Of course then I found a host of articles about how brining is great for adding moisture to pork chops, cutlets and roasts and avoiding having dry pork ever again! (Took me long enough to find out!).
I just brined the chops for half an hour before cooking them and I cannot tell you what a difference it made to browning the chops and creating a delicious sauce to go with them. The chops were juicy and delicious. I can’t wait to try the technique with my next pork roast.
Prep time: 35-40minutes cooking time: 15-20 minutes including making sauce
2 cups water
1/4 cup salt
Juice of half an orange
Half an orange sliced
1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
1 tspoon juniper berries
1 tablespoon or so of fresh rosemary leaves
2 pork chops or cutlets
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tspoon paprika
1 tspoon dried Italian herbs (mixed or just oregano)
Salt and pepper for seasoning
Juice of 1 orange
1/2 tspoon cornflour
1/2 cup of water
Pepper and salt for seasoning
Mix together brining ingredients and cover pork chops in a single layer, leave in brine for 30 minutes.
Drain off brine and pat chops dry, then rub with olive oil, paprika, dried herbs and black pepper.
Heat heavy based frying pan, then add pork chops and cook for 4 minutes on each side, as well as 1-2 minutes on rind side, check to see if pork is cooked – juices run clear. Allow pork chops to rest in pan, off the heat. Juices will run into pan. Remove chops from pan.
Return pan to stove on medium heat, deglaze with orange juice then add water and using a wooden spoon scrape all the yummy bits from bottom of pan and bring to a simmer.
Mix cornflour with 2 tablespoons of water to a smooth paste and stir into gravy off the heat to avoid lumps from forming. The cornflour thickens the sauce and also gives it a glossy look.
Strain sauce through fine sieve and serve alongside pork chops.
These chops are delicious with rosemary roast potatoes.