Thin pork chops are usually boneless and very lean, so they cook quickly. Most cooks prefer to pan saute them or grill them briefly, which gives the cook a bit more control since they are easily visible and readily accessible when using these methods. If you choose to bake them, watch them carefully to avoid overcooking. Because of their low fat content, they dry out easily if cooked too long.
Brining pork chops in a salt water solution before baking tenderizes the meat and prevents drying. Mix ¼ cup table salt with 1 quart water. Soak the thin pork chops for two hours. Rinse them before baking them to remove the salt on the surface. The brined chops shouldn't taste excessively salty, but they should have a juicy, savory flavor. Do not brine pork chops that were injected with a sodium solution when processed.
Before you put the pork chops in the oven, brown them first to seal in the juices and improve flavor. Coat a 12-inch skillet with cooking spray. Heat the skillet on medium high, then add the pork chops. Cook the chops on each side for 4 to 5 minutes until the outsides are golden brown. Transfer the chops to a baking dish along with any juices, then bake them.
Thin pork chops have a mild, sweet flavor that pairs well with fruit. Glaze pork chops with cherry or apricot jelly, or add sliced apples to the chops. Add orange juice, soy sauce or sherry to the baking dish to add flavor and prevent the chops from drying out.
Bake pork chops at 300 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes while checking them frequently. Cover them with aluminum foil to keep moisture in. When buying pork chops, look for those that are pink and have no odor. Avoid those that are gray, white or have a soggy texture or liquid in the tray. These pork chops were probably not processed correctly.
- Fine Cooking: Pork Chops
- Fine Cooking; Why Brining Keeps Meat So Moist; Shirley Corriher
- "The Martha Stewart Cookbook"; Martha Stewart; 1995