How to Make Restaurant-Worthy Pork Chops at Home July 10, 2017
The must-have, where-have-you-been-all-my-life guide to pork has arrived just in time for next week’s Cherry Balsamic Pork Chops. Select this Hall of Fame dinner of champs off the menu, bask in the knowledge that it’s one of our all-star recipes customers love most, then check out these five chef-approved tips to ensure you end up with nothing but the juiciest and most flavorful result.
1. Let your chops sit on the counter for a bit before you cook them
If you cook the meat too soon after removing it from the fridge, you’re far less likely to end up with a golden crust and tender center. That’s why we recommend giving the pork about 20 minutes to warm up before it hits the heat.
TIP: Don’t forget to season generously with salt and pepper while your chops are resting.
2. Don’t be afraid of a little heat — but be sure to adjust accordingly
Give the pan time to heat up (we’re talking screaming, scorching heat) before adding the meat for the best crust. Sear until each side is golden and do not — we repeat, do NOT — fuss with the chops. One flip is all they need when the heat is so intense. Check out the video below to see the one flip technique in action.
Make sure you don’t cook the pork over high heat the entire time, otherwise they won’t cook evenly through the middle. Once you spot a nice crust, reduce to medium heat.
3. Glaze your chops
Give your pork a part-sweet, part-tangy, and all-around delicious makeover by coating it in a glaze like next week’s cherry balsamic version.
After your chops have been seared and are just barely cooked to desired doneness, remove from pan and set aside. Add shallots and a drizzle of oil to the same pan and toss until lightly caramelized, 4-5 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and simmer until syrupy and reduced by half. Swirl in cherry jam and water. Season with salt and pepper, then remove from heat and add a knob of butter (1.5 – 2 Tablespoons — about the size of a knob on your kitchen drawer). Add pork chops back into the pan and flip until thoroughly coated with glaze and heated through.
4. Invest in a meat thermometer
This way, you’ll know exactly when your pork chops have reached an internal temperature of 135-138ºF and are ready to be removed from the heat. The official USDA recommendation is 145ºF, but residual heat will cause the temperature to rise post-cooking.
5. Let the meat rest
Wait 10(ish) minutes before slicing to allow the juices time to redistribute. We know you’re hungry, but these few minutes will make a delicious difference.
Put your pork expertise to good use by selecting next week’s Cherry Balsamic Pork Chops with Thyme-Roasted Potatoes and Broccoli off the menu.