Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Pan-Cooked Pork Chops with Plums and Mint

If you’re seeing some different labels in the pork section of your butcher shop, it’s probably because of the trend toward making the names more descriptive—and helping people know how best to cook the meat, as opposed to just calling chops “loins” or “ribs,” for instance.

I bought chops labeled “Porterhouse pork chops” for this recipe, but they’re really just thick-cut, bone-in, pork loin chops. The “Porterhouse” label simply implies that this cut of pork is similar to the cut of beef called by the same name. And if your market does it right, your Porterhouse chop really will resemble its namesake steak: two cuts in one—a regular loin chop with a little piece of tenderloin nuzzled along the bone.

The label also tells you how this cut of pork wants to be cooked—like a Porterhouse steak, these thick, juicy, tender chops are great for grilling or pan-searing. The key is timing—they don’t need much, just like their beefy counterparts.

Porterhouse Pork Chops
Serves 4

  • 4 8-oz porterhouse pork chops (about 1-inch thick)
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • flour, for dusting
  • 3 firm plums, quartered
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped mint leaves
Quartered Plums
  1. Season the chops with salt and pepper and dredge in flour, shaking off excess.
  2. Heat a large, cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter, swirling until the butter melts.
  3. Add the chops and cook until golden brown on the bottom, 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium. Turn the chops and sear until just cooked through, 4-5 minutes longer, depending on thickness. (Cover the pan, as needed, to help retain moisture.) Transfer the chops to a plate.
Chops Beginning to Cook
After Turning
  1. Reduce the heat to medium and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and remaining 1 tablespoon of butter to the pan. Add the plums and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until softened and caramelized, 7-8 minutes.
  2. Return the pork chops and accumulated juices to the pan and turn a few times to coat in the sauce.
Plums Beginning to Cook 
Browned Plums
Sprinkle with mint leaves and serve.

Pan-Cooked Pork Chops with Plums and Mint

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