Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dukan Pork Chops (aka No Recipes' Easy Pork Chops)

No Recipe's Pork Chops

We loved this recipe and we're going to invest in a meat thermometer.

As mentioned in an earlier post, we love Marc's blog "No Recipes".  Last month Marc posted a "Best Pork Chops" recipe and we just had to try it.  We don't eat a lot of pork but once in a while to have something different and if it's on sale, we'll pick up some pork chops.  As children, we both were raised eating pork chops pan fried with all the fat left on and a mushroom "gravy" made from the pork chop drippings and cream of mushroom soup.  One of these days we'll make pork chops this way but using fat free cream of mushroom soup.

Gravy seems to be the only thing that saves our pork chops.  We are guilty of always overcooking it trying to be sure we don't get sick eating undercooked pork.  We tried Marc's recipe and although we slightly overcooked it, the brined pork chop was yummy!  We're definitely trying this recipe again -- that's why we're asking Santa for a meat thermometer!

We rarely use our Wii for games (mostly use it for exercise) but we decided to challenge each other to bowling -- which lead to a baseball challenge, then a tennis challenge and if we owned two Wii Nunchucks, we would have boxed each other too ha ha.  This lead to dinner being prepared late which meant we made mistakes while rushing to get dinner cooked.  Eeek!  Our pork chops did not look as beautiful as Marc's with all of our rushing, but the recipe below is what he uses.

Our pork chops came out a little on the sweet side.  We'll adjust the recipe the next time around.  It may have been the full amount of Splenda Brown Sugar we used or the honey in the wine sauce.  We also used more wine than we are allowed, but if you look at it this way -- there were 4 pork chops, 1 cup of white wine would break down to 1/4 c. white wine per pork chops...but I'm sure it doesn't work that way.  In any case...we had this on Saturday night (Cruise PP) along with some other Dukan meals we prepared and this morning, we lost a pound!   It's up to you if you rather wait until Consolidation or Stabilization or perhaps the later half of your Cruise Phase -- you can always reduce the wine and honey or make this pork chop with fat free cream of mushroom sauce instead of the wine glaze.

Serves 2-4 (depends if you're having a starch, I had two pork chops with broccoli and no starch, the male half of this couple had one pork chop, broccoli and red rice)
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes (plus 4 hours or overnight brine time)
Cook Time: depends on how thick your pork chops are, approx. 10 minutes

4 - 1 inch thick pork chops, excess fat removed (ours were thicker, our local store didn't have 1 inch thick chops)

2 T. Splenda brown sugar
2 T. salt
4 c. water
1 clove garlic (we have the Costco minced one, so we used that)

1 T. olive oil to fry chops in or nonstick spray (we went for the olive oil)
1 large onion, sliced thinly (oops, we sliced ours too thick)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 c. white wine
2 T. honey
1 T. whole grain mustard

In a gallon size sealable freezer bag, add the brine ingredients.  Seal the bag and swish it around to dissolved the sugar and salt.  Add the pork, press out as much air as you can, then seal the bag.  Let pork chops sit in the brine for at least 4 hours, we chose to brine them overnight as Marc suggested.  (We also placed the bag in a pan just in case it leaked).

Remove the pork chops from the brine and use paper towels to remove as much moisture from the surface of the chops as you can.  Marc explains if there's water on the surface, the chops will not brown.

Add the oil to your pan and heat over medium high heat.  As you can see from our photos, our pan was not large enough for 4 pork chops...try not to overcrowd your food like ours.  Under normal circumstances we would cook two chops, then cook the next two...but since we were late in getting dinner started, we squeezed all 4 into the pan.  Place the chops in the pan while the pan is still cold.  Marc explains since the chops are brined with sugar, they'll burn before the cook through if you place them in a hot pan.

Fry the chops undisturbed until they are golden brown on one side and have gone from pink to beige about halfway up the sides.  Flip the chops over and fry the other side until well browned and an instant read thermometer reads 141 degrees Fahrenheit.  Transfer them to a place and let them rest.  Please see Marc's post about cooking pork - eventually you'll want to get your pork chops to an internal temp of 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

Drain most of the excess oil out of the pan and add the onions and garlic.  Saute until the onions are soft (we used red onions which we didn't care for in this recipe).  Add the wine, honey and mustard and turn up the heat to boil off the alcohol and thicken the glaze.

When the glaze is nice and thick, add the pork chops back to the pan and flip them over repeatedly to coat them with the glaze.  Once there is no liquid left in the pan, the pork chops are done.  Top with caramelized onions.   Serve as is on Pure Protein days or with a side of veggies on Protein Veggie days or with brown rice during Consolidation.

Enjoy...we sure did!