I have never made a pork chop before. They were not very expensive, so my first thought was, “I need to find a way to make these really well, for financial reasons.”
These pork chops perplex me – they exist as proof of how good my Grandma’s pork chops could be. What has she been doing to them all these years to make them so dry? Why is the eleventh commandment, “Thou must love thy grandmother’s cooking?”
This is a recipe that you’ll have to start one day in advance, but these pork chops are even better as leftovers – so that just about evens it out, I think.
Buttermilk Parmesan Pork Chops
3 boneless pork chops
1 c. buttermilk
1 c. panko breadcrumbs
1/4 c. white flour
salt & pepper
oregano & red pepper flakes
1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
3 T. olive oil
1/4 c. chicken stock
1 T. any red wine
First, you’re meant to tenderize the pork chops. I recommend purchasing a meat tenderizer. Or, if you live irresponsibly like me, use a gigantic hammer because you don’t have a meat tenderizer. Make many erratic and terrifying misses, hitting the wood counter instead of the meat.
Dry off the pork chops with paper towel, and massage them with about 1 t. sea salt per chop.
Then, put the buttermilk (and some hot sauce – I wish I had) in a large bowl. Put the pork chops in the buttermilk, and cover the bowl with saran wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, but I recommend overnight (put in the fridge before bed, cook it for dinner the next day).
So, it’s the next day, and you just got home from work. Pour yourself a glass of wine, and get to it.
At this point, butter a large-enough baking dish, and set it aside. Ideally, it should have an oven-safe cover for cooking.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Put the olive oil in a frying pan (must be large enough for all 3 pork chops) over medium-high heat.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, mix the panko breadcrumbs, oregano, red pepper flakes, s & p, flour and grated parmesan.
Dredge the pork chops thoroughly in the breadcrumb mix. Once the olive oil is bubbling hot, get the dredged pork chops into the pan. Cook for no more than 3 minutes on each side.
Take the pork chops out of the pan (don’t take the pan off the heat), and put them into the baking dish you set out earlier.
In the pan, add the chicken stock and wine, and swirl to mix. Let reduce for 4 minutes. Pour over the pork chops.
Cover the baking dish, if possible, and bake for 20 minutes (or, bake for 15 minutes, and then put under the broiler for 3 minutes or so).
I ate mine like a steak, with some roasted veggies and potatoes on the side. He ate his sliced up, on a toasted sandwich.
I’m considering trying the recipe again, backwards (baking, and then frying) because they weren’t as crispy as I wanted them to be. The flavor was dead-on. The original recipe didn’t include red wine, but I think it’s integral.
Re-heating leftovers: put a nice dollop of butter in a frying pan over medium-high heat. When the butter foam subsides, but isn’t yet browned, put in the leftover chops (don’t forget to include any breading that may have fallen off – it gets wonderfully crispy). Cook for 3 – 4 minutes. Flip chops, cook other side for one minute. Turn off heat, cover pan, and let sit for a few minutes. Then, eat.
P.S. I will make a “how to roast a chicken” post eventually, and explain how to make your own stock from the resulting carcass. I put my stock in ice cube trays, and then zip the frozen cubes into freezer bags. I like to boil stock cubes to cook ramen in. And pour it over pork chops, now, apparently!
Original recipe: Buttermilk-Soaked Parmesan Baked Pork Chops