Saturday, February 18, 2017

Pan Grilled Pork Chops with Cognac Cream Sauce

Once you learn to make some basic pan sauces, you can modify and use those for many other dishes. Today I'm making pan grilled pork chops and I've modified Julia's classic cognac cream sauce she uses for beef fillets for this recipe.

Julian's Grilled Pork Chop with Mustard Cognac Cream Sauce
Mustard pairs well with pork, so I often use this recipe for the sauce. When selecting chops, I prefer a t-bone pork chop 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick. You could also use a bone-in strip cut version. I prefer bone-in chops simply because they have more flavor.

2 pork chops, bone in preferred
Pinch of granulated sugar
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/4 to 1/2 cup Cognac
1 small shallot or onion (about 2 tablespoons)
     very finely chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup heavy cream
pinch of salt
freshly cracked pepper
Kitchen Bouqet browning sauce (optional)

Wash and dry the chops. Sprinkle one side with a pinch of sugar. In a medium sized skillet (cast-iron preferred) over moderately high heat, melt the butter and olive oil. As soon as the butter and oil are hot, place the chops sugar side down in the pan. Cook 4-5 minutes then turn and cook the other side until the chops are cooked through (another 4-5 minutes) and an instant read thermometer shows 145F.  Once done, remove the chops to a plate, tent with foil and set aside on the stove top to keep warm.

Move the skillet off heat, add the Cognac to the pan all at one time and carefully ignite the alcohol with a long match or firestick. Stand back, even a small amount of Cognac will initially make a big flame. Gently shake pan until the flames die.

Return the pan to medium heat and add the shallot/onion and the butter. Stir for 2 minutes or so until soft and lightly browned. Add the mustard and stir in. Add the cream and bring the mixture to a boil and whisk until the sauce coats the back of a spoon, approximately 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. If you prefer the sauce to be more brown, add a couple drops of Kitchen Bouquet and stir in. Add the chops back to the pan, turning them in the warm sauce and serve. Spoon remaining sauce over plated chops.

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