GRILLED DOUBLE-CUT PORK CHOP WITH CANE SYRUP GASTRIQUE
By Chef Isaac Toups
Pork Chop & Brine
2 ea. 20 oz. bone-in double-cut pork chops (not frenched)
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup kosher salt
2 tbsp whole black peppercorns
4 ea. bay leaves
Ice (lots of it)
Cane Syrup Gastrique
1 cup cane syrup (or molasses)
1 cup cane vinegar (or cider vinegar)
4 tbsp unsalted butter (½ stick)
Dirty Rice (*see recipe below)
Sliced green onions, for garnish
Brine the Chops: Combine the water, sugar, salt, pepper, and bay leaves in a large pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 minutes, then give it a good stir to make sure all the salt and sugar are dissolved. In a 3-gallon food-safe bucket, add the bring and enough ice until you have exactly 1½ gallons of brine. Once the brine is cold, place the pork chops in brine, cover, and refrigerate for 24 hours. Remove the chops from the brine and pat dry with paper towels. Season heavily with more salt and fresh ground black pepper.
Make the Gastrique: In a saucepan, combine the cane syrup and cane vinegar. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook until the liquid has reduced to 1 cup, about 20 minutes. There’s no need to stir, but watch closely as it likes to burn. You can make this in larger batches, the shelf life is pretty much infinite. Store in a sealed jar, it does not need to be refrigerated.
Grill the Chops: Preheat the grill to high. Preheat the oven too 400°F. Grill all sides of pork chop (even bone side) for 2 to 3 minutes on each side to get really hard grill marks. Put the pork chops in a roasting pan and top each with 2 tablespoons of butter. Roast for 8 to 10 minutes, until 135°F internal temperature (for medium) or preferred temperature. Allow the chops to rest for 3 minutes in the pan. Then right before you serve, dip them on all sides in the juices and the butter that’s left in the pan.
To Serve: Serve immediately. Place the dirty rice on a platter, place the warm pork chops on top, and drizzle ¼ cup gastrique generously over the top of each. Garnish with sliced green onion.