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crispy pan-fried pork chops

November 29, 2010

And now, back to the things I made last month. Starting with these buggers.

I recently decided that pork chops are yummy, and I have a love for all things crispy, so as soon as I saw this recipe in Cook’s Illustrated, I knew that it had to be mine. And I have to say, this one was a winner. The coating had an awesome flavor to it (despite the fact that I’m not generally a mustard fan), and it went really well with the meat. I may have overcooked the chops slightly because I have a crippling fear of parasites, but because the chops were thin-cut, they still didn’t turn out too tough.

Also, Cook’s Illustrated seems to be obsessed with making sure the coating sticks to the meat, and I will say that there was some shatter-age while cutting into the chops. That being said, I’m not really sure I find the idea of an armor-plated pork chop all that appealing, so it wasn’t really a dealbreaker for me.

However, I’m not a huge fan of pan-frying in general because it requires so much effort and tending and so many places where you can go wrong, so I knew the oven-roasted crispy chops recipe had to be next on my list. But that’s another story for another post.

Crispy Pan-Fried Pork Chops
2/3 cup cornstarch
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 medium garlic clove, minced or pressed
3 cups cornflakes
8 center-cut boneless pork chops (3 to 4 oz. each), 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick, preferably not enhanced
2/3 cup vegetable oil

1. Place 1/3 cup cornstarch in shallow dish or pie plate. In second shallow dish, whisk buttermilk, mustard, and garlic until combined. Process cornflakes, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and remaining 1/3 cup cornstarch in food processor until cornflakes are finely ground, about 10 seconds. Transfer cornflake mixture to third shallow dish.
2. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 200 degrees. With sharp knife, cut 1/16-inch-deep slits on both sides of chops, spaced 1/2 inch apart, in crosshatch pattern. Season chops liberally with salt and pepper. Dredge 1 chop in cornstarch; shake off excess. Using tongs, coat with buttermilk mixture; let excess drip off. Coat with cornflake mixture; gently pat off excess. Transfer coated chop to wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet and repeat with remaining chops. Let coated chops stand 10 minutes.
3. Heat 1/3 cup oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Place 4 chops in skillet and cook until golden brown and crispy, 2 to 5 minutes. Carefully flip chops and continue to cook until second side is golden brown, crispy, and center of chop registers 140 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 2 to 5 minutes longer. Transfer chops to paper towel-lined plate and let drain 30 seconds on each side. Transfer to clean wire rack set over rimmed baking sheet, then transfer to oven to keep warm. Discard oil in skillet and wipe clean with paper towels. Repeat process with remaining oil and pork chops.

Source: Cook’s Illustrated


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