So I love Crispin and I love pork chops. Pork is a very mild meat and I find it is always enhanced by brining. Fruit based brines always work well with pork, so why not try a little Crispin for my pork chops? Marriage made in heaven. Now when I'm done grilling, I like to add a little glaze. I usually add a balsamic glaze, which I typically make by reducing a half-cup of balsamic vinegar to a quarter cup. But Costco came to the rescue with a new product they started carrying: Blaze Graze. They've taken Modena Balsamic Vinegar and reduced it to a glaze for you. Just pop the top and pour!
4 thick-cut, bone-in pork chops
1 1/2 cups Crispin Dry Hard Cider
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt
5 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 tablespoon juniper berries
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 chunk hickory wood
- Place pork chops in a resealable bag, along with the cider, sugar, brown sugar, salt, thyme, bay leaves, ground mustard and juniper berries. Tightly seal and squish around to combine. Place in the refrigerator for 3 hours.
- Remove pork chops from refrigerator about 30 minutes before you're ready to cook them. Discard brine and pat meat dry using a paper towel.
- Light a chimney full of charcoal. When coals are white hot, spread them on the coal grate and add hickory chunk.
- Rub chops with olive oil. Place chops on grill over coals. Cover and cook for 5 minutes per side.
- When done cooking, remove chops from grill, tent with foil and let them rest for 5 minutes. Then serve with balsamic glaze (optional).
Wine pairing: A big, fruity Zinfandel