Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Maple Chipotle Pork Chops

Here's hoping I haven't lost my approximately 3 readers over the course of my long absence from blogging! We've been a bit busy around here with a new little one! We still only have a meager semblance of a schedule, but it's enough to have allowed me to venture back into the kitchen lately. I've been so excited to be able to plan and cook meals again...even if they are pretty much cold by the time I get a chance to eat! We've pretty much mastered the art of eating in shifts...Kate has an uncanny ability to sleep through the entire preparation of dinner and then those little eyes pop right open as the food hits the table!

I think I've mentioned before I have a slight obsession with grits and will pretty much make any recipe in which they appear (especially if it is featured in Southern Living). So it is no surprise that the first meal I made after my return to the kitchen was this:

These Maple Chipotle Pork Chops are fantastic! We had them over the smoked gouda cheese grits and it was a great meal. We weren't able to grill the pork chops because it's the season of the severe thunderstorm here, and I'm sure that would have made them even better by carmelizing the sauce a bit. I just prepared them on the stovetop in a little bit of oil and it worked out well.

Pork Chops:
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, seeded and minced
1 teaspoon adobo sauce from can
6 (1 1/4-inch-thick) bone-in pork loin chops
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

1. Whisk together first 4 ingredients, and set aside.
2. Sprinkle pork chops evenly with salt and pepper.
3. Grill, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350° to 400°) 20 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 155°, turning once. Baste with half of barbecue sauce mixture the last 5 minutes of cooking or when meat thermometer registers 145°.

Smoked Gouda Grits:
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth or water
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 cups uncooked quick-cooking grits
1 2/3 cups shredded smoked Gouda cheese
3 tablespoons unsalted butter

Bring first 4 ingredients to a boil in a medium saucepan; gradually whisk in grits. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes or until thickened. Add cheese and butter, stirring until melted.

Spoon Smoked Gouda Grits evenly onto 6 serving plates; top each with a pork chop, and drizzle evenly with remaining barbecue sauce mixture.

Also, if anyone has any idea as to what to do with leftover canned chipotle peppers in adobo, I'm all ears. I always have leftovers when I use them in recipes and never have any idea what to do with them!