I love the way buttermilk soaks in to chicken to give it a little bit of a tang and keep it moist through grilling or roasting; and I was still thinking of how much I enjoyed the grilled, barbecued buttermilk chicken at Mike and Susan’s last week (yes, I know it was my buttermilk marinade as well as my barbecue sauce, but I can enjoy my own food, can’t I?), so when it came time to think about dinner for one yesterday, I thought I’d see how a buttermilk soak would work on a pork chop or two. Tasty.
I did’nt have any buttermilk in the house, but there was the better part of a half gallon of skim milk that will not last to the end of the week and a lemon in the veggie drawer that’s getting on, so I repeated my new favorite buttermilk substitute formula:
•2 tbsp lemon juice
•Approx. 2 cup milk (I’ve used skim and 2%, it’s all good)
Place two tbsp lemon juice in a measuring cup. Add enough milk to make two cups. Stir and let sit for five minutes. Voila! Genuine imitation buttermilk! You can (and I have) use white vinegar in place of the lemon juice, but I think the lemon adds that little sumpin’ sumpin’ extra. On to the chops!
To our ‘buttermilk’ (and, if you happen to have the real thing laying around, by all means use it), add two or three diced garlic cloves, some fresh ground pepper, whichever herbs you like – I am partial to Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute – and, Tabasco (or Cajun Power Spicy Garlic Sauce) to taste – I added five or six shakes.
Drop in the chops, cover and let marinate for an hour or so on the counter, or overnight in the fridge. My chops were still thawing, so I opted for a couple of hours on the counter before grilling; flipping occasionally to be certain both chops were well and truly soaked through.
When it comes time for dinner, heat your grill – it was just me, so I pulled down my old Le Creuset grill pan and brushed it with some olive oil – and cook your chops for eight or nine minutes, depending on thickness, turning halfway through – I did four minutes per side.
After grilling, remove chops to a platter, cover, and let rest for five to ten minutes, and serve as you will… I opted for a baked potato and a simple salad.
One chop for dinner, one for later…