Grilled Pork Chop with Wild Rice, Smoked Bacon, Apple Chutney and a Cider Sauce

recipe courtesy of Chef Rafael Lunetta, Executive Chef/Owner of JiRaffe Restaurant, Santa Monica, CA

Serves 4
Pork Chops in Marinade

  • 4 pork chops, 1 ¼ inch thick           
  • 2 ½ cups vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp crushed black peppercorns           
  • 1 tsp pink peppercorns, crushed
  • 1 tsp green peppercorns, crushed           
  • 1 tsp crushed white peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup honey               
  • 1 orange, halved and juiced
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, scraped           
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 carrot, sliced               
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 large celery stalk, diced           
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 bunch thyme                
  • 2 Tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbsp coriander                
  • 1 Tbsp black peppercorns
  • 2 cloves                    
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 rosemary sprigs                

Mix all marinade ingredients together. In a container, add the pork chops and marinate for 24 hours making sure the pork chops are completely immersed in the oil.

Wild Rice

  • 1 ½ cups wild rice               
  • 4 ½ cups chicken stock
  • 3 slices bacon               
  • 1/2 cup carrots, peeled and finely diced
  • 1/2 cup celery, finely diced           
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely diced
  • 2 bay leaves               
  • 3 Tbsp chives, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp parsley, chopped               
  • 2 Tbsp shallots, finely diced
  • 2 Tbsp butter

In a pot, add wild rice and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then strain and set aside. In a pot, sweat bacon until lightly browned. Add diced onion, and sweat until translucent. Add wild rice and stir to coat rice with the bacon fat. Add the bay leaves and 4 cups of the chicken stock. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add carrots and continue to simmer. When rice is almost al dente, add celery. Season with salt and white pepper. The rice is done when it starts to expand and begins to break. Remove bacon and bay leaves immediately. Lay rice on a sheet pan to let cool evenly.

Slice 8 pieces of bacon crosswise about ¼ inch. In a medium sauté pan, cook bacon until golden brown and crispy. Strain fat and reserve for wild rice.

Apple Chutney

  • 6 apples, red delicious, peeled and diced       
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, scraped
  • 1 onion, medium dice               
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes               
  • 1 Tbsp coriander seeds, crushed

In a wide shallow pot, caramelize honey until dark brown, but be careful not to burn. Add onions, apples, and vanilla bean. Cook apples and onions down until liquid has been reduced. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Season with red pepper flakes and coriander. The apples are done when golden brown, usually about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove vanilla bean. Transfer to a bain-marie and keep hot in a water bath.

Pork Vegetables

  • 3 carrots, peeled, large dice           
  • 4 celery sticks, large dice
  • 1 onion, large dice               
  • 1 tsp thyme, chopped

In a medium sauté pan, sweat carrots, celery and onions. Season with thyme, salt, and white pepper. Cook until vegetables are tender and set aside.

Cider Sauce

  • 2 red delicious apples sliced, skin on           
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, scraped           
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 cup sherry vinegar               
  • 1 ½ cups sparkling apple cider
  • 1 ½ cups veal stock               
  • 1 ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds

In a medium saucepot, caramelize honey until dark brown, but not burnt. Add onions, apples, and vanilla bean. Cook until all liquid has been reduced. Add vinegar and reduce until evaporated. Add cider and reduce by half. Season with red pepper flakes and coriander. Add veal stock and reduce until slightly thick, then strain. Transfer to a bain-marie. With a ladle, fold in four Tbsp of butter. Keep hot in water bath.

Pork Chops
Mix peppercorns together. Season pork chops with salt and peppercorns. Heat a large sauté pan, add three ounces of oil, and when pan is hot, add pork chops. Brown on all sides.  Place in a pre-heated 500°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes (for slightly pink) or 10 to 12 minutes (for medium).  Take out and let rest on a resting rack for 5 minutes.

Final Preparation
Garnish: Tie one sprig of rosemary and one sprig of thyme with one chive. Repeat three times to yield four garnishes.

Cut pork tender off the bone, place in a sauté pan, heat pork in oven until heated (about 3 minutes.) While pork is heating, heat up wild rice in a medium saucepan with 1/2 cup of chicken stock and two tablespoons of butter. Adjust seasonings when ready to plate, add chives, parsley, smoked bacon, and shallots at the end, to keep herbs green. In a small sauté pan, heat pork vegetables with one ounce chicken stock. When pork is hot, slice tender at a bias against the grain, into four pieces.

Heat four large plates. Place a medium spoonful of apple chutney at the top center of a large plate. Place a medium spoonful of wild rice on each side of chutney. Place a medium spoonful of pork vegetable under chutney. Fan pork over vegetables. Place pork bone upright on the right side of the piece. Ladle 2 ½ ounces of cider sauce over pork. Garnish in between chutney and sliced pork. Serve with J. Lohr Estates Los Osos Merlot.