Kassler pork chops
Back in August our head butcher, Troy, spent a weekend away at the Daylesford Longhouse relishing in nose-to-tail cooking with a group of keen home cooks and budding butchers. There, they made a range of charcuterie, smallgoods and roasts - all from one rare breed pig that was raised at the property. The centrepiece of the weekend were Troy's Kassler pork chops. They're great for a dinner party because most of the preparation is done in advance, freeing you up for hosting and conversation. Troy's Kassler chops borrow from a traditional German recipe, where a whole pork rack is brined overnight with salt, sugar, rosemary and thyme. After brining the pork, the rack is roasted in the oven and rested. The rack is then sliced, and each thick cutlet is pan fried for deep caramelisation and gnarly edges. Serve with kombu cabbage, golden potato gratin and plenty of hot mustard.
12g salt per litre
7g brown sugar per litre
4g white pepper per litre
Aromatic herbs for overnight soak, like thyme, rosemary, majoram, sage, savory
Brining the pork
Ask your butcher to prepare the rack of pork by removing the rind.
The day before you intend to cook, prepare the brine for the pork. Dissolve the salt, sugar and white pepper in three litres of water then add the herb bunches to the brine.
Place the rack in a container large enough to hold the pork comfortably, then pour the brine over the pork, making sure it is completely submerged. Cover the container then store the pork in the fridge to soak overnight.
Cooking the pork
Once the rack has been brined, it then needs to be cooked either in a BBQ set up for smoking or roasted slowly in the oven.
Preheat an oven or BBQ to 80C then roast the whole pork rack for 5 hours (or until it reaches an internal temperature of 65C).
The final step
Allow the pork to chill down completely before slicing each point into individual cutlets.
Panfry each pork cutlet in a castiron pan with plenty of butter, until it is deeply caramelised on all sides.
Serve with hot mustard, warmed potato gratin and charred cabbage.