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Sous Vide: Pork Chops, Pan Fried

Sous vide pasteurizes and tenderizes your chops during the day so you can finalize your entree quickly and at your leisure in the evening.

Ingredients

Pork loin chops, two each, approximately  1 lb/450 g.
Salt as needed, approximately 2 teaspoons.
Ground black pepper, as needed.
Flour for dusting, approximately 0.5 cup/65 g.
Egg, one each.
Fine bread crumbs, 2 cups/ 250 g.
Vegetable oil, 3 oz/75 ml.
Sous vide brown gravy linked here, or packaged–we recommend Knorr brand, 6 oz/150 ml.

Equipment requirements

Immersion circulator, portable or stationary.
Heat rated container, minimum of 2 gallons/8 liters.
Note: Pork chop bones can be sharp enough to pierce vacuum processing pouches–I recommend using Ziploc freezer bags in this particular case.
Flat bottomed skillet, 12″/30 cm.

 

Level of difficulty: 2

Procedure:

Stage the pork chop(s) into Ziploc freezer bags. Remove the air using the water displacement method.

Sous vide processing temperature settings can be adjusted to accommodate specific time requirements. People who plan to spend the day in the kitchen usually prefer shorter processing intervals. People who work outside the home favor intervals that allow them to start the process in the morning. They can then return in the evening and finish preparing their meal in less than one hour. To accomplish this, sous vide gives us two choices for processing pork chops.

Sous vide process the pork chops at
140F/60C for 4 hours

OR

Sous vide process the pork chops at
132F/56C for 9 hours

After processing is complete, reduce the bath temperature to 127F/57C. The pork chops can be kept at this temperature for up to six hours without any detectable change in quality. This gives you the freedom to assemble the rest of your meal, knowing that once everything else is ready you are only a few minutes away from finishing your entrée.

When you are ready to finish your entrées, remove the bag of pork chops from the bath. Submerge in cold tap water for five minutes. Remove chops from bag and pat very dry with a paper towel. Lay the chops out on parchment or butcher paper. Sift flour over the pork chops on both sides until they are completely covered with white.

Combine the egg with 2 oz/50 ml water and beat well. Put the beaten egg on a plate and put the dusted pork chops in the egg. Turn the chops over, and make sure the chops are completely covered with egg.

Sprinkle half of the crumbs on the parchment/butcher paper. Lift one chop out of the egg and hold it above the plate until it stops dripping. Place it on top of the bread crumbs. Lift the other chop out of the egg, let drip and place on the crumbs next to the other chop. Dry your hands well. Sprinkle the other half of the bread crumbs over the chops and pat lightly to help the crumbs cling to the chops. Stand the chops on edge and tap to shake off the excess–if there are still “naked” spots on the chops, dip the uncovered areas back into the egg and lay the chop back into the crumbs.

Heat a 12″/30 cm skillet to 250 F/121 C. Add the 3 oz/75 ml vegetable oil and carefully lay the chops in the pan. Do not crowd the pan–make sure there is at least 2″/60 cm between them. Fry until brown on one side for 1-2 minutes, until brown. Use tongs to grab the bone and gently turn them over. Finish browning on the other side.

About

While being the mainstay of almost every home cook's repertoire, the tempting appearance of pork chops is usually marred by a tendency to be chewy and bland. Concerted efforts to achieve doneness to the bone create the likelihood of overcooking the meat. Sous vide processing counteracts loss of moisture while simultaneously achieving tenderness, uniform appearance of doneness and the assurance of food safety.

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