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BBQ Pork Chops

September 28th, 2009

Earlier this year I was part of a group of 7 that got together to buy a Berkshire pig from Wind Dancer Ranch in California. They raise these pigs free range or pastured on their family farm, along with turkeys, sheep, rabbits and more. Very friendly people and I hope to visit the ranch some day.

2 inch pork chops read to go

2 inch pork chops ready to go

I finally got around to thawing and cooking some of this excellent pork Sunday night. Among the parts I received were some enormous pork chops, each 2 inches thick! To get a real taste of the meat I simply brushed them with some olive oil, salt and pepper. I scored the fat layer – sadly the skin was removed since they don’t have the facility (yet) to scald and de-hair the pigs.

I fired up the trusty weber and got a good hot fire going, then seared them all over on hight heat before moving them to the cool side and closing the lid. I had them standing on a side with the fat on top, so as to allow the rendered juices to baste the chops while they cooked, turning them occasionally. I also added one chunk of hickory to give a bit of a smoke. I did not want to get it too smoky so as not to overpower the meat.
For various reasons we did not make it to the farmer’s market on Sunday and I had to make do with what I had in the fridge. Some great little carrots were roasted in butter and olive oil with a good glug of maple syrup. First on the stove top, then in a 300 degree oven until tender. I left the oven on in case I needed to finish the meat off the bbq, which was pretty hot but worked out just fine. I also had an English cucumber and some cherry tomatoes and some baby daikon which I used for salads.

Daikon is quite popular in Bavaria where you can often buy it spiraled or sliced with a good helping of salt to make it “bleed” and relax some of it’s hotness. It’s called “Radi” and can be found in many beer gardens and at the many beer festivals. The cucumber and tomato salad had a simple red wine vinaigrette and the daikon just salt and a dash or two of seasoned rice vinegar.

on the grill

On the grill

The meat took a while to get up to temperature, I took it off the grill when it reached about 145 degree and let it rest for a couple minutes. It had developed beautiful color and some of the fat had actually turned a bit crunchy, even without the skin. No real crackling, but certainly very good. I de-boned the chops and cut them into pieces, served with the salads and carrots, a nice glass of Sierra Nevada Kellerweis. Very tasty meat, tender and sweet, I’m very pleased with the quality. And while you can often buy good quality pork at Costco or in the supermarket, it’s nice to know that this one had a happy life with lots of sunshine and roaming around outside!

We finished all the meat (two adults, a 6 and a 2 year old) and salads. I had expected left over meat, as I’ve never seen such gigantic chops, but it was just too good! A great quick dinner with little work.

I have two more of these monsters in the freezer, I think next time I’ll try an oven roast on a bed of onions, serve some Knödel (Bavarian potato dumplings) with them and a green salad.

Some more images:

carrots sizzling away in some butter and olive oil with maple syrup

Carrots sizzling away in some butter and olive oil with maple syrup

hot off the grill, resting and waiting for the knife

Hot off the grill, resting and waiting for the knife

sliced and ready to be plated

Sliced and ready to be plated

dinner is served!

Dinner is served!

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  1. Lobster
    September 28th, 2009 at 19:31 | #1

    Those are some phatty chops, Oly. Maybe try stuffing them next time?

  2. Oliver
    September 28th, 2009 at 20:21 | #2

    Oh, I like that idea!

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