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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 06-21-2010, 05:50 AM   #1
SmokeJumper
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Join Date: 04-14-10
Location: San Francisco, CA and Phu Quoc Island Vietnam
Default Orange Confit Pork Chop

We are always trying to eat food made from ingredients grown in our small urban garden and from the local farmer's market down the hill. Between myself and my neighbor, a gentrified farmer with a well known Sonoma Farm, we have 11 types of citrus and over 20 types of herbs. San Francisco weather is dynamic, often varying within any given neighborhood, and in our slice of the microclimate most of the fruit trees are bursting with ripe fruit and the herb boxes are raging with leaves and blooms in this early part of the summer.

Thinking about what might work well for a Throwdown entry, I focused on two of my favorite types of Citrus: Kumquats and Valencia Oranges. I imagined using these beautifully bright and fresh ingredients along with some fragrant thyme to accent grilled pork, to create my first Throwdown entry "With a Bone". I walked down to my local Wednesday evening farmers market for some ideas and found some beautiful pork chops (double thick 18 ounce monster for me and cute little 6 ounce chop for the wife) and also found some nice Brussel sprouts, small red potatoes, and red onions for sides.


To accent and accompany the pork I used citrus two different ways and prepared these components the night before. I decided to create a paper thin confit of Valencia orange to caramelize onto the pork. It was slow poached in olive oil and white wine with black and red peppercorns to capture the beautiful essential oils of the fruit with just a hint of bitterness.


While living in Germany I came to love the fruity, tart and sweet braised red cabbage and apples they use as an accompaniment to hearty pork dishes. Inspired by that basic flavor profile and slightly crunchy texture, I pickled red onions in dry white wine and grenadine with black peppercorns and coriander seeds.


To play off the tartness of the pickled onion and to build on the citrus notes of the caramelized orange confit, I decided to make candied kumquats. To tame the robust and unique flavor of the kumquats and add a bit of herbal and floral complexity, I candied them in a boiled sugar, honey, and rosewater syrup and added a small amount of thyme after removing them from the heat.


The next evening I prepared the pork chops by layering on the orange confit, thyme, salt, brown sugar, and the confit olive oil.


Next I prepared the side dishes by grilling the red potatoes and halved Brussel sprouts.


To build flavor on the pork chops and to create a thin caramelized orange and thyme layer on the surface, I heated a cast iron pan over medium coals, flipped the chops orange side down as gracefully as possible, and seared them for about 2 minutes. I then turned them over onto the cast iron grate, shut the dampers, and cooked for an additional 10 minutes. I pulled the chops at an internal temperature of 135F. The cast iron pan step was so time sensitive (think of how fast brown sugar burns!) that I didn't manage to capture a picture.


I plated the chop along with the sides. I had fun with the presentation.


The flavors of the caramelized citrus and thyme played beautifully off the lusciousness of the pork. The sweet and sour pickled red onions and candied kumquats were a perfect counterpoint. After letting the chop rest we were pleasantly surprised to find that the caramelized orange surface turned a bit crisp, like a creme brûlée top.



After dinner my wife sang her highest of praises by asking me if I wanted any new cooking gadgets for Fathers Day! I let her know I wouldn't mind upgrading to an XL Primo or BGE. Let's see what she comes up with!

Thanks for taking the time to look at my first Throwdown recipe.

Last edited by SmokeJumper; 06-21-2010 at 06:33 AM..
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Old 06-21-2010, 06:00 AM   #2
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Old 06-21-2010, 07:05 AM   #3
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Dang those pics sure took my breath away. Nice work.
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Old 06-21-2010, 08:28 AM   #4
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Yessur.... Sang those praises in the throwdown thread...

Just thinkin' next time Ur wife gets a dinner like that... might not be a new utensil you're after.

Sorry.. back to normal programing....
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Old 06-21-2010, 08:32 AM   #5
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I just drooled all over my keyboard.
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Old 06-23-2010, 02:06 PM   #6
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Very nice, lots of prep, but a stunning pork chop. I really like the candied kumquat angle.
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Old 06-23-2010, 02:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by landarc View Post
Very nice, lots of prep, but a stunning pork chop. I really like the candied kumquat angle.
That's why it got my vote. Besides looking oh so goooooooood...
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Old 06-23-2010, 02:42 PM   #8
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very nice looking dish. Well done!
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Old 06-23-2010, 05:45 PM   #9
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My god!!!! That's a pharking piece of art!
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