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The citrus pork chop brine makes these pork chops something special.
Grown-Up Pork Chops: Citrus Brine
Most of my recipes are ones that the entire family will enjoy. But every so often, you want to eat something that caters more to adult tastes. These chops fill the bill since they’re full of flavor and have a decidedly boozy glaze. These are grown-up pork chops
Because of the bourbon in the glaze, these chops may not be appreciated by younger children. It’s not so much the alcohol–which burns off when you boil the glaze–but it has a slight bitter undertone that offsets the sweetness of the glaze.
However teens may enjoy them as much as adults.
Citrus Pork Chop Brine
The brine for these pork chops goes a little further than the standard water, salt and sugar.
This brine gets it’s great taste of citrus from orange juice and a variety of herbs.
Since there’s quite a large amount of brine, make sure you have a vessel big enough to hold all of it plus the chops. I used a 2 gallon zipper plastic bag and it was adequate. You could also split everything in half and distribute it between 2 smaller gallon bags.
You also have to heat the brine so the flavors meld well, then cool it to room temperature before you use it on the chops. This is a recipe that you have to start the day before because the brine needs 12 hours to work it’s magic.
After that, the cooking is pretty quick and easy.
Grill Them Too
Even though the recipe calls for pan frying the chops, you can grill them outside. While the weather is still good, why not?
Grilling will certainly cook them, but if you get grill marks, they’ll look even nicer plus pick up a slightly smoky taste that will go so well with the taste of the glaze.
Jack Daniels Glazed Pork Chops
- 6 boneless pork loin chops 3 pounds total
- 2 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- 8 garlic cloves pressed
- 1 bunch fresh thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 tbs peppercorns
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 tbs canola oil
- 3/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 rosemary sprig
- 4 tbs cut-up unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup bourbon
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- Bring orange juice, brown sugar, salt, garlic, thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, cinnamon, and 6 cups water to a simmer in a large pot. Remove from heat. Cool to room temperature. Add pork and brine 12 hours.
- Remove pork from brine and rinse under cold water. Pat pork dry with paper towels.
- Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook pork, in batches, turning once, until golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until the internal temperature reaches 160F/70C 4 to 6 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes. Serve drizzled with glaze.
- Make the Glaze:
- Combine molasses, apple cider vinegar, and rosemary in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat until reduced to 2/3 cup, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Whisk in unsalted butter and bourbon; continue to cook until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes.
- Season with kosher salt and black pepper.