Ingredients for the pork chop brine:
4 center cut pork chops
1/4 cup kosher salt
1 cup warm water
1 1/2 cups apple cider, divided
2 cinnamon sticks
1/2 tsp black pepper
6 whole cloves
1 tsp ginger
Ingredients for the chutney:
3 Tbsp butter, divided
1 shallot, minced
2 pears, chopped
1 apple, chopped
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
3-4 sprigs rosemary
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup apple cider
1/2 cup water or chicken stock
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
Rinse the pork chops and pat them dry.
Make the brine: In a large saucepan, combine the salt with 1 cup of warm water and 1 cup apple cider. Heat over medium-high heat until the salt dissolves. Remove from the heat, then add apple cider, spices and cinnamon sticks. Stir to combine the ingredients and allow them to steep for a few minutes; then add enough ice to cool the brine to room temperature. Once the brine is cool, add enough cold water to equal 5 cups total liquid.
Place the pork chops in a glass dish with a lid or large resealable bag that seals well. Pour the brine over the chops and ensure they are submerged. Allow the pork chops to sit in the brine for at least 4 hours or up to overnight.
One hour before cooking, remove the pork chops from the brine. Rinse them under cool water and pat dry. Throw away the brine. Allow the pork chops to sit at room temperature for an hour.
While the chops are resting, make the chutney. In a sauté pan, warm 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add the minced shallot and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the shallots are cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the apples and pears and another pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the apples have softened enough to be pierced with a fork, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the spices and rosemary and stir.
Increase the heat to medium-high and add the apple cider vinegar. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any caramelized fruit on the bottom of the pan to incorporate it into the sauce. Add the water or chicken stock and apple cider and bring to a simmer, then reduce to medium-low and cook until the sauce has thickened, about 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the mustard and the last tablespoon of butter.
When ready to cook, set smoker temperature to 500°F.
Place the pork chops directly on the grill grate and cook for 7 minutes. Flip the pork chops and cook another 5 to 12 minutes or until the internal temperature of the pork chops reach 150°F. Remove the chops from the smoker and let rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with the apple pear chutney.
About Smoke 'n Thyme with Dania
Dania Beck resides in the Upstate of South Carolina, and is a working mom who has a passion for cooking. Dania is quick to share that she has no culinary training. She likes to say, “I’m just a mom who loves to cook”. Dania hopes that by sharing her love of cooking through pictures and recipes, that she will inspire others. Dania says, “You don’t have to be a trained chef to make really good food. You just have to enjoy food and be willing to try”.
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