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!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Honey-Brined Pork Chops with Whole-Grain Mustard Glaze

Substitute honey for the usual white or brown sugar that you may use for brining, and you get a little extra sweetness in the cooked meat. And incredible juicy tenderness. To complement the pork chops, I glazed them with a sweet and tangy combination of apricot preserves, whole-grain mustard, and a bit of white wine vinegar. I think the flavors played well with each other.

Note: I used 1/2-inch-thick pork loin chops, which are thinner than lots of pan-roasted pork chops. If you choose thick center-cut chops, simply adjust the cooking time to add a couple more minutes both in the pan and in the oven.

Serves 4

  • 3 cups warm water
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup table salt
  • 1 tsp pink or black peppercorns
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 1/2-inch-thick pork loin chops
  • 1/4 cup apricot preserves
  • 2 tbsp whole-grain mustard
  • 2 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp finely chopped rosemary
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

  1. Combine the water, honey, salt, peppercorns, and cloves in a large bowl, stirring well to dissolve the honey and salt.
  2. Add the pork chops, submerging completely. Cover and refrigerate 6-8 hours (or overnight).
  3. Preheat the oven to 400° F.
  4. Combine the preserves, mustard, and vinegar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring often, until thickened and the preserves are melted, 4-5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the rosemary. Season with sea salt and pepper and set aside.

Pork Chops in Brine

Glaze Ready to Combine

Whole-Grain Mustard Glaze
  1. Heat a large, ovenproof (preferably cast-iron) skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil, swirling to coat. Remove the chops from the brine and pat dry. Season both sides with sea salt (light on the salt) and black pepper. Place in the pan and sear until lightly charred on the bottom, ­­­­­­3-4 minutes.
  2. Turn the chops over and brush with most of the glaze. Place the skillet in the oven and roast until the meat is just cooked through, 4 minutes, or until done.

Brined Pork Chops

Beginning to Sear

After Turning

Glazed Chops
Transfer the chops to a board and let rest 3 minutes. Brush with the remaining glaze and serve.

Honey-Brined Pork Chops with Whole-Grain Mustard Glaze


  1. Great recipe! I love grainy mustard and always try to find recipes that incorporate it in some way. This recipe looks delicious. Can't wait to try it out.

    1. Thanks much, Connor --- hope you enjoy the chops!