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Bourbon-Maple Brined Berkshire Pork Chops

From: Chef J. Kevin Storm, CeC, Bellerive Country Club, St. Louis. Yield: 5 servings.

1 cup bourbon
1 cup water
1/4 cup salt
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
4 tsp. paprika
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 clove garlic
2 oz. brown sugar
5 5-oz. trimmed Berkshire pork chops
5 strips bacon
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
to taste, salt and pepper
for garnish, fried sweet potato straws
for garnish, micro mustard greens

2 oz. olive oil
1 lb. pork scraps
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 cup port wine
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme
1 sprig tarragon
1 Tbsp. black peppercorns
1/4 cup stone-ground mustard
4 cups pork stock
1/4 cup maple syrup
reduction from pork belly (recipe follows)
1 oz. unsalted butter
to taste, salt and pepper

1 2-lb. Berkshire pork belly, cleaned as needed, salt and pepper
1 cup chopped carrot
1 cup chopped celery
1 1/2cups chopped onion
1/2 cup barbecue spice rub
1 cup pork stock

For Pork Chops: Mix bourbon, water, salt, mustard, paprika, syrup, garlic and brown sugar. Brine chops for 30 minutes, then cold-smoke for 30 minutes. Lay bacon out and cover with plastic wrap. Pound bacon, remove wrap and season with 2 Tbsp. brown sugar, salt and pepper. Wrap each pork chop with bacon and season with salt and pepper. Cook over hickory grill about 5 minutes per side or until internal temperature reaches 135° F. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving. Plate sliced pork belly (about 2 oz.) under each chop. Serve with stoneground mustard sauce.

For stone-ground mustard sauce: heat saucepan. Add olive oil, then pork scraps. Caramelize meat; remove. Add vegetables and caramelize. Add tomato paste and caramelized meat. Add port wine and reduce by half. Add bay leaf, thyme, tarragon, peppercorns, mustard and stock. Reduce by half and strain. Add maple syrup and reduction from pork belly, and reduce to same consistency. Add butter. Adjust seasoning and strain again.

For pork belly: Season with salt and pepper. Sear in pan and remove. Add vegetables and caramelize. Rub pork belly with barbecue spice rub. Let stand for 15 minutes. Add to vegetables. Add stock; bring to simmer. Cover and braise at 250°F for about 2 hours. Remove belly and let cool. Slice and reserve for service. Strain stock and degrease. Reduce stock and reserve for sauce.


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