Domesticity Nouveau

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Basic Broiled Pork Chops


This was going to be a post on how to grill pork chops... but, the grill ran out of gas about 2 minutes after I put on the chops, DOH! 

With summer coming to an end, broiling is a more practical cooking basic to cover anyway.  And it is reassuring to read about other people’s mishaps in the kitchen... we all have them, but sometimes reading other people’s blogs, I feel like I don’t have a clue what I’m doing nor should I be talking about it!

But I do have a clue some days, and with a little quick thinking I changed dinner plans from grilled to broiled and have something to share with you!

I was able to find a great buy on whole pork loin, but that is anywhere from 7-10 pounds of meat to deal with at one moment.  Why would I buy that much you ask?  Because I would rather spend the 5-10 minutes slicing the loin into some chops and a chunk for the crockpot than pay double the price per pound to have the butcher do it for me.  Yeah, I’m cheap like that.  And I like leftovers so I can maximize my lazy time!

Broiled Pork Chops


Ingredients
Pork Chops
Seasonings of choice

Instructions
Place pork chops on a rack on a baking sheet and dust with seasoning.  Bring to room temperature for about 20-30 minutes.  Set oven rack to highest slot.  Turn oven on to broil and slide in pork chops.  Broil 3-7 minutes, turn and continue to broil an additional 3-7 minutes until 145 degrees or barely pink inside.  Remove from oven, tent with foil and allow to rest 5 minutes.

It’s time to play questions!

Whole pork loin
Do I have to slice my own pork loin?
Nope.  You can use any pork chop you would like.  Pork blade steaks work equally as well with this method.  I only chose to slice my own loin chops because it was frugal and easy.  If you prefer to buy already sliced chops, it is your time and money balance that you have to take into consideration.  There are many different names for pork chops and all can be used with this technique.

How many pork chops?
As many as you would like.  You can do one or a whole baking sheet full.  You can do this in your toaster oven, too!  I prefer to maximize my efforts so I do as many as I have available so there are plenty of leftovers and I can spend more time reading food blogs.


Do I have to use a rack?
Nope.  If you don’t have a rack or a broiler pan, don’t worry about it.  Just use that pizza pan or cookie sheet or cake pan... but don’t use glass baking dishes.  They aren’t designed to handle the heat of the broiler as well as metal pans can.

What seasonings do you use?
My go-to seasoning of choice for pork chops is Penzeys Pork Chop Seasoning.  Creative name, huh?  In the photo I used pork chop seasoning, salt and pepper, and chili powder and salt.  Indian spices like curry, garam masala or tandori are fun to use.  Pork is such a neutral base I really can’t imagine a bad seasoning.   Equal parts powdered ginger and granulated garlic with salt & pepper would be darn tasty!  You don’t have to measure, just sprinkle some on!  A little cumin... maybe some Mrs. Dash... a bit of za’tar... you have endless possibilities!

Why do I let it come to room temperature?
Bringing meat to room temperature before cooking it allows the heat to penetrate and cook more evenly so that the outside doesn’t overcook while the inside remains raw.  It isn’t essential, but I find that I have better results when I add this step.  If you don’t bring to room temperature, you might have to add additional cooking time.

I don’t have to preheat the oven?
Not for this technique.  It is the hot broiler at the top of the oven that is doing the cooking, not the ambient heat in the oven like when you roast a chicken.  You want that glow from the heat source going to get that meat sizzling and browning. 


The highest slot?  That looks awfully close!
Yep, the highest position for the rack you can manage.  Of course, common sense does play into this a bit.  If you have a really thick hunk-o-meat, and it is only 1/4 inch from the broiler element, you would do well to lower your rack level.  One to two inches from the broiler element is just fine.

3-7 minutes is a big window!  Nothing more specific?
For the 1 inch loin chops in the photos, it took about 5 minutes per side in my oven.   If your meat is thinner, it takes less time.  If your oven runs low or slow, it takes more time.  I would flip 1/2 inch thick pieces at 3 minutes, and then check after 6 minutes total.  You can always add more time and heat, but you can’t take it back if you turned that meat to jerky!


Are you sure about 145 degrees?  My Mama always said 160 degrees.
Things changed this year and 145 degrees is the sweet spot you want to hit.  Without a thermometer, you are going to need to go by sight.  If your meat is the same color all the way through, it is likely over-cooked.  You want to look for just the barest of blush in the middle, right before it would all be the same color.  A $10 instant read thermometer is really worth the investment....

Up next....  Basic Slow Cooker Pork Loin!

1 comment:

  1. This is a great recipe with great "how to" information. I love pork chops and at the age of 73 years, I still try to replicate my mother's great pork chops and since I do not have access to a grill, want to try this out so that I can get that wonderful taste.
    Just to note, I only use garlic powder and a tiny bit of salt as seasoning. Why are all these recipes calling for all of these exotic sauces? It must be a trend because the real taste of a pork chop is worth simple seasoning to me. Thank you for having the one recipe that I was seeking. Am going to cook some green beans and new potatoes as a side plus some kind of yellow squash recipe to find on Pinterest and Hodgkins Yellow Corn Meal cornbread... no gluten/no flour... the real taste of what cornbread should taste like.

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