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Old 03-22-2006, 06:14 PM   #1
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Brine

Someone who owns restaurant was on radio show and suggested to keep pork chops moist is to put them in brine. The longer the better. Could someone tell me what ratio water to other ingedients and how long average time? My pork chops are always dry no matter what I do. I know there is other way to keep moist than breading. Thanks

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Old 03-22-2006, 06:50 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by In the Kitchen
Someone who owns restaurant was on radio show and suggested to keep pork chops moist is to put them in brine. The longer the better. Could someone tell me what ratio water to other ingedients and how long average time? My pork chops are always dry no matter what I do. I know there is other way to keep moist than breading. Thanks
I never brine pork cuts that require quick cooking methods, only because I don't care for the flavor. Many people do however, so it's more of a personal preference thing. One tip I can give though is to buy a whole pork loin, and cut your own chops/steaks at home. Cut them relatively thick, about 2". Store cut chops, which are roughly 1" or less thick dry out much, much faster. Pan sear and finish in the oven, or grill over medium heat.

If you do want to try brining, here's a basic ratio for every gallon of water being used:

1/2 c. Kosher Salt
1/4 c. Sugar

You can then flavor the brine with herbs, garlic, spices, etc. Most people brine their meat at least overnight, although you can probably do it for an absolute minimum of maybe 2 hours.
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Old 03-22-2006, 06:53 PM   #3
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brining works well with chicken too, but if using cut up parts, go for an hour or so. A whole bird maybe 6 hours. THe bigger and denser the meat the longer.
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Old 03-22-2006, 07:13 PM   #4
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Alton Brown's Book "I'm only here for the Food" has a great chapter on brining. He 'splains things pretty good too.
His orange brine solves the flavor problem. I like it a lot.
1 quart vegetable stock
1/2 c. kosher salt
1/4 c. dark brown sugar
1 t. peppercorns
2 bay leaves (from the shady side of the tree grown in latitudes less than 43 degrees)
1 quart of orange juice
2 qts. ice water...
Heat the stock, peppercorns, and bay leaf just to a boil...dissolve sugar, remove from heat, add the OJ and cold water.
Let meat brine for 8 hours or more. Remove pat dry, cook as desired...
It works....
(I may have fudged a little on the bay leaf thing... :)
he also has one for pork chops...
1 tablespoon juniper berries
1 tpbso peppercorns
10 cloves
1 1/2 c. kosher salt
1/2 c. molasses
2 qts water... this one is faster can be as little as 1/2 hour.

I'm not a big clove fan so I don't like this one as much, but your tastes may vary.
(I may be kidding a little bit on the bay leaf thing )
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Old 03-22-2006, 07:26 PM   #5
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Don't know why your chops are dry but I do agree with ironchef that moist pork chops should be thick.

You don't have to do it yourself, can always ask the butcher at the supermarket to cut them thick. They can often accomodate.

The prepackaged thin stuff we find in the grocery stores' display cases is generally just too thin, doubt anyone could make them tender (say that because someone, I hope, is going to come along and tell me how to do it).

Have not brined anything but poultry, sorry.

Also pork is often overcooked. It needs to be a little bit pink, once that is lost it is tough.

Use a thermometer and thick chops, that is all I can suggest.
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Old 03-22-2006, 09:24 PM   #6
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Aunt Dot has it right on the button.
  1. Thick Chops
  2. Brine
  3. Use a thermometer (145-150 F)
Give it a try, you'll be pleased.
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Old 03-22-2006, 09:40 PM   #7
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You can cut these chops with a fork. Tender every single time.

Pork Chops


6 pork chops
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
bread crumbs
oil

Instructions: Beat egg & milk. Dip chops in egg & milk mixture. Cover chops with bread crumbs. Brown in 1" of oil. Remove from oil & place in baking dish. Add 1/4 cup boiling water to baking dish. Cover tightly with foil. Bake at 400* for 50 - 60 minutes.
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Old 03-23-2006, 08:10 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by In the Kitchen
Someone who owns restaurant was on radio show and suggested to keep pork chops moist is to put them in brine. The longer the better.
I love brining meats and think it works amazingly well for pork chops. I disagree with the chef who said the longer the better though. the meat reaches a point where the texture will suffer greatly if left in the brine too long. For pork chops I would not go longer than 2 hours myself. You could probably do three, but I think two is optimal.

Ironchef, you mentioned that you don't linke the taste of pork that is cooked quickly. Do you use salt on your pork? Afterall a brine can be just salt water and nothing else.

I have used Alton Browns pork brine recipe for thin chops and the results were great.

Brining is a great way to keep things moist as well as add flavor if so desired. As far as ratios, that is personal taste. A basic brine for me is jsut water and salt. I do not measure, but I try to make it pleasantly salty. What that means to me is that if I taste the brine I don't have to spit it out right away because it is so salty. Hope that helps.
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Old 03-23-2006, 09:31 AM   #9
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Help

Thanks for the time and interest. You people know everything!! I respect and admire your attention to the detail of recipes. Seems like always the same ones who know more than others. This happens to be one topic that isn't often discussed and hence no comments. The chops I made were thin and that may have been part of the problem. But if brining would help to keep them moist I will try it. All these suggestions are certainly appreciated. I have been given wealth of knowledge from this site. May your generousity be returned doublefold.
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Old 03-23-2006, 10:09 AM   #10
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ITK... the main thing is not over cook. We, in general, have been oversold on cooking pork until it is like shoe leather.
When my mom and dad grew up on the farm and killed their own hogs, things were different.
Cook to 140 or 145... juicy!
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