I had fun with some pork chops the other day. There is nothing groundbreaking in the recipe but this did serve as a great lesson in using my grill pan.
I started out with four boneless pork chops that were a little under an inch thick. I let the chops brine for about an hour. I wanted to let them soak for four to six hours but I just didn’t have the time. I dried the chops off, gave them a light coat of mustard and a good dusting of Stubb’s BBQ rub. I am a big fan of using a light mustard coating on pork. Mustard and pork are a great combination and the mustard layer really helps the rub adhere to the meat. The mustard flavor in the end product is actually much more subdued than you would expect.
I pre-heated my cast iron grill pan for five minutes over medium heat. I was able to fit all four chops into the pan without them touching and I let them grill undisturbed for seven minutes. After seven minutes I flipped them over and, “ta-da”, they looked pretty dang boring. They had a few grill marks on them but absolutely nothing to brag about.
I wanted to make sure I had some great grill marks so I brought out my foil covered brick and placed it across the chops. As soon as the brick went on you could hear the chops really start to sizzle.
I wasn’t overly concerned about the chops drying out while they were being pressed since they were pretty thick and had been brined a little. After three and a half minutes I rotated the brick 45 degrees to make sure all four chops got pressed evenly and grilled another three and a half minutes. After seven total minutes of pressed grilling I flipped the chops over and had perfection! Check out those grills marks; they made me very happy! The difference between pressed and non-pressed was night and day.
I served these up with a little steamed broccoli and a side of rice. Leftovers were enjoyed the next day in the form of pork tacos.
The chops did end up a little overcooked. I suspect this is because I did not get to brine them as long as I wanted, fourteen minutes of grilling was a little too long, and that pressing the chops multiplied the effects of the first two issues. This was a great learning experience for me; I’ll fix my mistakes next time. Just to be consistent and on theme here; a grill pan is a great way to cook a lean protein like boneless pork chops. There was almost no smoke and cleaning up the pan was a snap.