Pork Chop Tropicale’ is a great way to serve one of my favorite meats!
You know pork is the other white meat….we have been hearing that for years!
Also years ago, we were told to cook the heck out of pork…to assure food safety.
The result was a dry, tough pork chop ….which resembled shoe leather, both in looks and taste.
However, in May of 2011, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) determined a new guideline for cooking pork chops, pork roasts and pork steaks.
The USDA did explain that the change does not apply to ground meats, including beef, veal, lamb and pork…which should be cooked to 160 degrees.
Please note that the safe cooking temperature for all poultry products, including chicken and turkey remains at 165 degrees.
The USDA goes on to say that there should always be a “rest time” after cooking…and for pork chops, the rest time should be at least 3 minutes.
To quote the USDA, http://www.fsis.usda.gov/ :
“A “rest time” is the amount of time the product remains at the final temperature, after it has been removed from a grill, oven, or other heat source. During the three minutes after meat is removed from the heat source, its temperature remains constant or continues to rise, which destroys pathogens. USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has determined that it is just as safe to cook cuts of pork to 145 °F with a three minute rest time as it is to cook them to 160 °F, the previously recommended temperature, with no rest time. The new cooking suggestions reflect the same standards that the agency uses for cooked meat products produced in federally inspected meat establishments, which rely on the rest time of three minutes to achieve safe pathogen reduction.”
Gosh! it takes me 3 minutes to get the rest of the meal served up in dishes! 😉
The USDA’s… FSIS goes on to discuss the appearance of cooked pork……
“The new cooking recommendations clarify long-held perceptions about cooking pork. Historically, consumers have viewed the color pink in pork to be a sign of undercooked meat. If raw pork is cooked to 145 °F and allowed to rest for three minutes, it may still be pink but is safe to eat. The pink color can be due to the cooking method, added ingredients, or other factors. As always, cured pork (e.g., cured ham and cured pork chops) will remain pink after cooking. Appearance in meat is not a reliable indicator of safety or risk. Only by using a food thermometer can consumers determine if meat has reached a sufficient temperature to destroy pathogens of public health concern. Any cooked, uncured red meats – including pork – can be pink, even when the meat has reached a safe internal temperature.”
I suggest using a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chop …or any pork roast or pork steak.
Any further questions or issues with cooking pork can be found in a Q&A at the below link.
Simple ingredients you most likely have in your pantry.
So simple to mix together in a large plastic bag….just “mush” with your fingers…through the bag of course! ):
Refrigerate overnight or at least for 8 hours…..use a large bowl or baking dish just in case of “leaks”…and toss on the grill!
I like to go into the fridge and “mush” up the marinade every so often, although it is not necessary.
Hey, it makes me feel that I worked extra hard on these chops! 😉
Meanwhile….Enjoy these pork chops!
The glazing caramelizes on the chops… not only tastes good, it looks good too!
They will soon become your “go to” recipe for chops!
I promise! 😉
Oh, and if you want to add a few extra pineapple slices to the grill….please do! I love pineapple almost as much as I love pork chops! 😉
Below is the handy-dandy printable recipe.
- 4 pork chops
- 1 small can pineapple rings, (8 ounce) drained, reserving the juice
- 1 small can crushed pineapple (8 ounce)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup Teriyaki sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger (or 1/2 inch of fresh)
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper (optional)
- For the marinade, add pineapple juice and crushed pineapple, brown sugar,Teriyaki sauce, ginger, black pepper and garlic powder in a large zip lock bag. I like to put the plastic bag in a bowl to insure no spills...but that is just me...I tend to spill a lot 🙂 AND it also allows for mixing the marinade either with a spoon or zipping the bag and shaking to dissolve the sugar.
- Add the pork chops into the marinade, squeezing out any air in the bag as you seal. Refrigerate overnight. (I also like to keep my sealed bag in a bowl in the fridge for the same reason I pour ingredients into a "bowled bag" (I think I just made up that term...;0 )
- Place the pineapple rings in another baggie and put in the fridge.
- Preheat your grill for a medium heat, lightly oiling the grates.
- Remove the pork chops from the marinade, shaking off excess, and grill about 5-7 minutes per side.
- Brush the pork chops a few times with your pineapple juice marinade, which will allow the juices to penetrate the chops and give a lovely grilled appearance.
- Discard excess marinade.
- As the meat is grilling, place 4 pineapple rings onto the grill, and allow to brown slightly and the slices show grill marks.
- Top each pork chop with a grilled pineapple ring and let "rest" for at least 3 minutes before serving.
- When brushing the pork chops...I don't mind if some of the crushed pineapple remains on the chops...it just makes the glaze adhere...if that makes sense! 🙂
- I have used the ground ginger and the fresh ginger and they still taste great!
- Serve the Pork Chop Tropicale' with a light tomato-couscous salad, or baked potato or your favorite side.
- Did you know that you can keep a "claw" of fresh ginger in the freezer and just break off what you need? Great tip!