Oenologist and Cal Poly graduate Molly Strupp works full time on our cellar team. She arrived at Halter Ranch in May of 2011. As a special treat this fine Sunday she has contributed a pairing from her own table:
2009 Halter Ranch Cotes de Paso with Pork Chops and Leeks in a Mustard Sauce
Molly sourced the recipe below from Epicurious
If you use commercial pork in this recipe, you might want to rub the chops with the salt mixture and let them sit for a full day in the fridge. The long rest will make the meat extra-juicy. Bone-in heirloom rib chops have ample marbling, so the meat will be naturally moist. They don’t need to rest as long with the salt rub—an hour or two should be sufficient. These are some big chops, so you might be able to share.
Yield: Makes 4 servings
4 1 1/2- to 2-inch-thick bone-in heritage pork rib chops
2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 bacon slices, coarsely chopped
Olive oil (optional)
4 cups thinly sliced leeks (white and pale green parts only; about 3 large)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup brandy
1 cup low-salt chicken broth
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/3 cup créme fraîche or sour cream
Pat chops dry with paper towels. Mix 2 teaspoons coarse salt, thyme, rosemary, and 1 teaspoon pepper in small bowl. Sprinkle seasoning mixture on both sides of chops. Let stand at room temperature 1 to 2 hours or wrap and chill up to 1 day.
Heat heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add bacon and sauté until crisp and lightly browned. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to small bowl. Increase heat to medium-high. Add chops to skillet. Sear until brown, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer chops to small baking sheet.
Pour off all but 3 tablespoons drippings from skillet (or add olive oil to make 3 tablespoons). Add leeks and sauté until soft, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and stir 1 minute. Add brandy, then broth and bring to boil, scraping up browned bits. Return bacon to skillet; add sage and stir to blend.
Nestle chops in leeks in skillet. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover; simmer 3 minutes. Turn chops over. Cover; simmer until thermometer inserted into thickest part of chops registers 140°F to 145°F, about 3 minutes longer. Transfer chops to platter. Tent loosely with foil to keep warm.
Spoon off any fat from cooking liquid in skillet. Boil until all liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Whisk in mustard, then crème fraîche (do not boil). Season with salt and pepper. Spoon over chops.
The chops for Molly’s effort came from the Halter Ranch Fair Pig (each year we sponsor a pig for the Mid State Fair Livestock competition).
To read another post featuring Molly click the photo at the top of the post or right here.