It’s no secret that Neil loves to barbecue, but did you know he is nearly obsessed with finding “the good stuff?” Get Neil in a butcher shop and he could probably remain there for hours, admiring all the cuts, shapes and quality. So when his coworker recently told him about Mizzou Meat Market, a mere couple hundred feet from his office, Neil gave me a “brb” on instant messenger and had pork chops waiting in the backseat on Friday when he picked me up.
This past weekend was perfect barbecue weather. Warm, sunny and did I mention WARM? Plus, I had just finished my finals, a feeling which I can only compare to surfacing after a long dive underwater. I have been so ready to get outside, and back in the kitchen, so what better than a barbecue and Neil’s recipe for Sweet and Sticky Mustard Pork Chops?
4 1- to 1 1/4-inch-thick center-cut bone-in pork chops
1/2 cup honey (or brown sugar)
1/4 cup dijon mustard
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
1. Combine brown sugar/honey, dijon mustard, lemon juice, soy sauce and garlic in a bowl. Stir until sugar dissolves.
2. Place pork chops in large resealable plastic container or bag. Pour marinade over pork chops; seal bag/container. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours (we typically marinade overnight), shaking container or turning bag occasionally.
3. Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Sprinkle pork chops with fresh cracked pepper.
4. Grill pork chops until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of chops registers 145°F to 150°F, about 5-7 minutes per side, brushing with leftover marinade and moving chops to cooler part of rack if burning.
5. Transfer chops to platter; cover with foil, and let stand 5 minutes. Serve.
Stick and sweet, it doesn’t get much better than that. Neil is effortlessly amazing at barbecue. It has to be genetic, because I never knew love for barbecue like this until we started dating. I can say it single-handedly keeps me from being a vegetarian. I can’t help myself. I love the way the sharpness of the mustard mingles with the sweetness of the dark brown sugar we used. We started out trying to be well-mannered, using our forks and knives and carefully cutting bite-sized pieces and trying not to make a mess. By the end, our inner-cave couple emerged and we were using all our fingers and ferociously trying to get every last bite off the bones. Ahhhh spring, I think you’ve finally arrived…
For more information on Mizzou Meat Market, including hours, location and weekly specials, be sure to check out their website. Their specials are pretty phenomenal. We got four beautifully thick and high quality bone-in pork chops for $4.50. We also picked up a few boneless chops, so stay tuned for another recipe soon-ish!