The grocery store I shop at does a nice job departmentalizing it’s meat section. In one row is the fresh poultry with neatly butchered chicken breasts lining the rows next to whole birds, ground turkey, and other savory chicken pieces. Two rows over is the beef aisle with it’s tantalizing new york strips and flank steaks ready to be marinaded and transformed into delicious dishes. Between these rows is the pork section and what was, for me, one of the most intimidating aisles the grocery store had to offer.
After all, pork is fatty and unsafe to eat undercooked, right? Sure, ribs are delicious, but cooking them is better left to the pros. Ham is only for Easter and why on earth would I ever willingly eat anything called a ‘Butt?’ The list of excuses was endless.
I can’t remember the first time I had pork tenderloin at my parents, but it seems fairly recently my dad picked up a new fool-proof way to grill it and couldn’t wait to share with the rest of us. One bite of the lean, tender meat and my only-chicken-breast-as-a-lean-source-of-protein days were over.
I’m keeping things simple with this recipe. Just pork chops and peaches over arugula with a drizzle of balsamic. In order to get the most out of my ingredients, I’m brining the pork chop and grilling them alongside the peaches. I can’t express enough just how much flavor brining brings to pork. You could skip this step and just season the pork chops then throw them on the grill, but the brining process is so simple and makes the chops so tender.
This is an ideal summer time recipe perfect for those warm evenings when you feel like lighting up the grill and eating al fresco on the porch. Simple ingredients and fast prep means more time to spend enjoying the night.
Brined Pork Chops with Grilled Peaches
- 2 Cups Water
- 2 Tbsp Kosher Salt
- 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
- 2 6 Oz. Bone-in Pork Chops (Boneless is fine, too)
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 3 Peaches, halved with the pits removed
- 4 Cups Arugula
- Balsamic Vinegar
Combine the water, kosher salt, and brown sugar in a large bowl. Submerge the pork chops in the water mixture and place in the fridge. Allow the chops to brine for 4-8 hours.
Preheat the grill to medium heat. Remove the pork chops from the brine and pat dry. Add half the olive oil to the chops and season with salt and pepper while rubbing the spices and oil into the flesh. Drizzle the rest of the olive oil over the peaches. Place your chops and peaches on the grill and allow to cook for 4-5 minutes on each side. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the pork and ensure it’s at least 145. This will render a medium cooked pork chop. Continue to cook longer for a chop that’s well done.
Place the peaches and the chops over arugula, drizzle with balsamic vinegar, and enjoy!