I have the weekend off work...idle minds make for creative thinking, and I have some pork to work my magic with this weekend. While at work yesterday, I was already thinking about what to do with a 7.10lb package of thawing chops, and thinking back on the last brined chops I made, I couldn't resist the urge to try it again with a different recipe. We liked the last batch alot, but if you know me, you also know I like to try new things, recipes being no exception, and here's what I conjured-up after a late return home from work...
7.10lbs of chops getting happy @ 11:00 pm last night:
ANCHO/RBP PORK CHOP BRINE
***for 6-7lbs pork chops in 6qt covered brine container***
1.5 qts water in saucepan
1 large ancho chili, stem/core removed, broken into small pieces
3 Tbls diced dried red bell pepper
2 Tbls rosemary
1 Tbls thyme
1 tsp marjoram
1 Tbls ground cayenne pepper
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground sage
1 Tbls ground black peppercorn
1 Tbls minced dried garlic
3 Tbls celery salt
3/8 cup salt
4 Tbls light brown sugar
2 bay leaf, removed after cooling
2 qts ice water (added to brine concentrate after removed from heat)
The dry rub I used is from the double brined butt smoke I did a few days back (killer-good), Hawg Heaven Rub, found HERE.
The chops have brined for 16.5 hours before I did a quick rinse, rubbed and tossed 'em into the smoke. I wanted complete penetration into the meat, and have a slightly reduced salt content, so the extra time should bring it all together.
Into the Smoke Vault 24 @ 225*, ~5,000ft elevation, 1/2 full water pan, 42% relative humidity, 35* ambient temp, apple/cherry/pecan smoke, time of 2:15 pm, shooting for a 5:30 pm dinner:
The two fragments on left and right front of the upper grate were loose in the package...the butcher didn't do real handy work on these, with a couple of the shoulder chops being in quite rough shape, but I'll make due, and, the fragments will make good samplers for the chef...ha-ha!!!:
5:20 pm (just over a 3 hour smoke), I'm hungry, and the chops are ready!!!:
Good moisture, medium-well to my experienced pork chop eyeballs, nice smoke ring, GREAT flavor:
I could have used the same brine I used for my butts a week ago (Here Piggy-Piggy), which was really good as well, but, like I said, I'm always finding something different. It's difficult to find the flavors of the brine alone on such a thin cut of meat, but I'm sure it played a big role in the interior flavors and moisture of these chops. The dry rub was great on my butts, and proved itself again today...mild and tasty in the extreme...a good match for chops as well as butts.
With another good smoke under my belt, I'm already thinking about the next one...well, it's already begun...un-enhanced loin back ribs are brining for Sunday, in case you're interested...some dandy LBR's are coming, for sure.
Thanks for peekin'! Enjoy!
Edited by forluvofsmoke - 5/1/11 at 7:05pm