To brine or not to brine… !
When it comes to white meat the decision is pretty easy for me… if the recipe involves some kind of sauce or gravy, brining is not needed, but if the recipe has no flavorful liquid involved, then brining is a MUST!
For the brine:
- 4-5 cups of water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup of salt
- 1/2 tsp whole black pepper
- 4-5 stems of rosemary (optional)
- 4-5 stems of thyme (optional)
Mix everything until the salt and sugar is dissolved, then add the meat making sure all the meats are submerged. Put the content in a ziplock bag or any covered container and let it sit in the fridge overnight.
Take the meat out at least 2 hours before cooking time. Get rid of the liquid, pat dry and let it come to room temperature.
Maple Dijon Pork Chops
- 6 thick cut, bone-in pork chops
- 2 tbsp dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp maple syrup (the good kind)
- 1/3 tsp chopped rosemary
- 1/3 tsp thyme
- salt and pepper to taste
- vegetable or olive oil to coat the grill pan, about 2-3 tbsp
- Mix everything but the oil and let the meat marinate for at least an hour.
- Heat a grill pan on high heat. Once smoking hot, drizzle the pan with oil to coat it.
- Add the pork chops and grill for 4-5 minutes on one side, until you get nice grill marks. Baste with any leftover marinate you may have (this is not a must, but definitely helps add a bit more flavor). Flip the chops and cook for another 4-5 minutes on the other side, until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. **Note that the meat will keep cooking for a bit after you take it off the heat, so the temperature will rise several degrees as it rests.
- Once you take the chops off the heat, let them rest for at least 3 minutes. This is important to make sure the meat stays juicy.