Pork Chops with Apple Chutney [Photograph: Alex Farnum]

Anyone who thinks a pork chop is "a flavorless hunk of chewy meat" (as Max and Eli Sussman put it) have yet to try a double-cut chop prepared steakhouse-style. Seriously, the double-cut chop could change just about anyone's mind when it comes to leaner cuts of pork.

The width of the chop and presence of the bone allows it to be cooked long enough to develop a crust while staying juicy and tender on the inside. In This is a Cookbook, the Sussman brothers add extra insurance by brining these extra-large chops overnight before searing them off while basting in herb butter. To add even more goodness, they serve the chops with a simple apple and caramelized onion chutney. It's the ultimate fall dinner.

Why I picked this recipe: Pork chops and apples are seen so often in tandem for a reason; the bright sweetness of the fruit plays brilliantly off the savory, salty notes of the brined meat. I also cannot say no to chops basted in butter.

What worked: Everything about the chops was perfect; I gnawed on the bones long after the meat was gone.

What didn't: The chutney was a bit over-spiced for me. Next time, I'd cut the allspice in half and bloom the dry spices with the ginger in the pan with the caramelized onions instead of adding them raw.

Suggested tweaks: It'd be easy to play with seasonings here. Brining the pork chops with apple cider might be a nice way to integrate the two components.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of This is a Cookbook to give away.

About the author: Kate Williams is a freelance writer out of Berkeley, CA. She is a contributor to The Oxford American and blogs at cookingwolves.wordpress.com.


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