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Grilled Pork for Variety

August 16, 2014

pork chops on the grillWhen most people think of grilling it’s steaks, burgers or, in general, beef that comes to mind. However pork is a great way to add some variety to your grilling meals and the grill is just the appliance to help.

Grilled pork chops with just the right seasonings are a tasty way to try something new. You can use premade commercial seasonings or simply salt, pepper and a little garlic powder. Not all pork chops are created equal! Especially if you purchase direct from the farmer or butcher you can get ½ inch chops or one inch chops cut. Thinner chops are sometimes called “breakfast” pork chops and cook quickly. Use caution to not leave the grill – they won’t take long!

There’s also “butterfly” chops and boneless chops. So popular are pork chops over the grill that in Illinois there’s an entire weekend devoted to the pig, featuring what is called the world’s largest pork chop barbecue.

Pork roasts, pork loin and pork steaks are other cuts that can make tasty use of space on the grill. The right grill can also smoke hams or shoulder roasts – something not all grills can do. You can grill the same delicious pork chops right on your patio without leaving home.

Use a rub, brush with a variety of sauces or simply grill with salt and pepper, but savor the ease of preparation. Pork does take some special care. While it is generally advised to rub or brush on then let it set for about a half hour before grilling, it does pay to keep the meat covered and out of extreme heat during that half hour.

Along with this make sure pork is cooked thoroughly. Proper handling of the meat is critical for food safety.

One of the easiest – and tastiest – ways to enjoy barbecue pork is pulled pork sandwiches. Get a Boston butt, allowing about a pound per person. Mix up two tablespoons each brown sugar and paprika, then add a teaspoon each of garlic powder, dry mustard, onion powder, salt and red pepper. Mix thoroughly and rub thoroughly into the meat, covering all surfaces. Let this set and get your grill going. You can make packets of hickory chips, soaked and wrapped in foil, that smoke to add flavor even with a gas grill. Put the meat on the grill, insure you’re at 325 or so and just let it cook slowly for about 4 hours. Using a meat thermometer it’ll cook until the meat is at 195F., at which point the bone will pull free. Let the meat sit for about a half hour and use forks to pull it apart. Some prefer to add a barbecue sauce before serving on sandwiches but this is prime eating.

Put some pork on the grill – for variety and taste!

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