Monday, October 27th, 2014

I dried out the pork chops. They were thick and juicy and marinated to perfection when I put them on the grill, but I left them on about fifteen minutes too long. I’m going to blame rain and a faulty thermometer.

When I say they were thick, I mean they were the thickest pork chops I’ve ever seen in my life. I know I tend to exaggerate, saying “a gojillion” when I mean “five,” but honestly, these pork chops were at least an inch and a half thick, so when I built the fire, I banked the hot coals up either side of the grill so the chops wouldn’t be right over the fire. It would take at least thirty minutes to cook them, so I added more charcoal and, while I was down in the basement doodling around with something on the internet for about ten minutes, waiting for the new charcoal to catch, I came back upstairs to a cloudburst! But the fire was still plenty hot, so I covered it and gave it another ten minutes to dry out the top layer of briquettes before I put the chops on.

With the fires banked up the sides and the chops in the middle, I figured it would take about thirty minutes to cook them to perfection. There was some discussion about what perfection would look like. With chops that thick, I wanted to make sure they were safely cooked all the way through, but the source I googled said cook it to one-sixty, and the source B googled said one forty-five. I was going to decide after I slipped a thermometer into the first chop at the half-hour mark.

Hmmm. One-thirty, maybe one thirty-five. Not nearly cooked enough. I covered the grill and trotted back inside to get out of the rain, and waited another ten minutes before I checked it again. I knew from the way that the meat resisted being stabbed by the thermometer that it was done this time, but the thermometer only climbed to one-forty. What the hell?

I took them inside anyway, put them on the table and announced that dinner was served. My Darling B tucked into hers with enthusiasm and even after she made a face, she wouldn’t tell me what was wrong, but as soon as I popped a piece into my mouth I knew: The thermometer lied! I should have taken them off at thirty minutes.

“They’re not inedible,” B said, munching away at hers. True. But it was a sad end to what had been a beautiful pair of pork chops.

overdone | 6:01 am CST
Category: cook-out, food & drink
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