I had never paid a lot of attention to pork chops in my early days of cooking. But that all changed back in the 80's when I took my first bite of JD Hoyt's Cajun Pork Chops. Absolutely life changing. I went from full-time steak guy to the guy that only ordered pork chops at JD Hoyt's.
Cajun is still my very most favorite way to grill up pork chops:
http://terrygruggen.blogspot.com/2011/08/grilled-cajun-pork-chops.html. But I've come across zillions of great grilled pork chop recipes, most of which I have written about in this blog. I'm going to share another here today from Jamie Purviance.
First, let me share a little bit about pork chops. I only use center-cut rib chops. I like my chops to have a bone for the flavor it imparts and also for the ability to pick up the bone and gnaw the remaining meat. Center-cut chops also have decent marbling.....for fat equals flavor.
And I like my chops to be at least an inch thick. That makes them nice and juicy when cooked to medium rare (145º) or medium (150º). The old advice of cooking pork to 165º is dead and gone. It's the "steak" from pork, so why would you cook it to well done? I like to throw in a little mesquite while I'm grilling these chops, but that's just me. This recipe serves six.
For the Cowboy Paste
2¼ teaspoons kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon chipotle or ancho chile powder
½ teaspoon dried Mexican oregano leaves, crumbled
¼ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
For the Chops
6 center-cut pork rib chops, each about 8 ounces and 1 inch thick
- In a small bowl mix the salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, chile powder, oregano, cayenne, and garlic powder. Add the oil and vinegar to the bowl and stir to combine.
- Spread the paste on both sides of each pork chop. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 6 hours. Allow the chops to stand at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes before grilling.
- Prepare the grill for direct cooking over medium heat (350° to 450°F).
- Grill the pork chops over direct medium heat, with the lid closed for 8 minutes, turning once. Remove from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes. Serve.
Pairing: I would pair this with a Malbec, Syrah or Zinfandel. But if I were making this tonight, where it's going to be 81º in Minneapolis, I would pick an ice-cold pilsner.