After a really cold week, the weather has improved and you still have time to celebrate National BBQ Week. I like sausages, steaks, and burgers as much as anyone but I love to try out new recipes and techniques when cooking and barbecuing. The technique of brining is definitely not new and is not just suitable for barbecuing meat. The process is a great way of flavouring and keeping meats such as chicken or pork juicy and succulent. If you want a more technical explanation of brining, please read my Online Cookery School post.
Pork is an immensely versatile meat, and the best pork always comes with a good layer of fat to help keep the meat moist during cooking but some of today’s commercially reared pork is bred to be very lean. Try and find a local supplier of an old fashioned rare breed pork close to you, the difference in taste is really amazing and they come with a good deal more fat. I absolutely adore Jon and Jenny Hackett’s Saddleback pork here in farmed here in Jersey.
Jalapeño and Beer brined Pork Chops
In a large plastic bowl or food-storage bag, mix together the all of the ingredients excluding the pork chops. Place the pork chops in the container and then add cold water until the chops are covered, about two cups. Place the container in the refrigerator, and let the pork chops marinate for at least four hours. Drain from the brine, pat dry with kitchen paper, brush with oil and grill for ten to twelve minutes for on each side, depending on thickness.
Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Salsa
4 large Beef Tomatoes, skinned and de-seeded
2 Sweet Red Peppers
1 Medium Red Onion, peeled and very very finely chopped
1 clove of Garlic, peeled and very finely diced
1 small Green Pepper
2 tablespoons freshly chopped Coriander
Grated zest and juice of two Limes
½ tablespoon of Caster Sugar
Sea Salt and freshly cracked Black Pepper
Place the red and green peppers on a baking tray and brush with a little oil. Grill under a high heat until the skin blisters and burns. Turn the peppers over and repeat until all the skin is charred. Place the peppers in a heavy-duty food bag and seal, this steams the hot peppers and allows for easy removal of the charred skins. When cool remove from the bag and wipe off the skin using kitchen paper. Remove seeds and pith and finely slice. Chop the tomatoes (click to see how to skin the tomatoes). Place all of the ingredients in a non-reactive bowl and combine.