Years of overcooked, lean pork has given pork chops a bad rap. But the times they are a-changin', and things are looking up for pork. For one thing, we now have relatively easy access to much better meat. We also have much safer pork—pork that can be eaten at a juicy medium or medium-rare, the way it was meant to be. On top of all that, we're in a virtual renaissance in terms of novel cooking techniques; better, smarter ways to maximize the flavor and texture of a pork chop. Today we're going to discuss a few of those techniques and see if we can't nail down the best.
'reverse sear' on Serious Eats
Summers are made for the grill, but what's a steak lover to do when the weather's too cold and wet to light the suckers up? Just cook them indoors. Indeed, pan-seared steaks have several distinct advantages over grilled steaks—enough that there are times when given the two choices, I'll choose pan-seared just for the sake of it. While grilling will get you a rapid-fire crust on your steak with all those delightfully crisp, on-the-verge-of-burnt bits and a good smoky flavor, I find that the even golden brown crust you can develop in a hot cast-iron pan really accentuates the flavor of the beef itself, letting it shine. On top of that, pan-searing affords you the opportunity to add your own flavorings in the form of aromatics. Pan-seared steaks come out about 4 percent moister to boot.
Here's the best way to do it.