Here is a bit of an Italian take on the classic smoked pork chop.
Total Time: 45
- 2 Red Oak Grilling Planks
- 1 cup Dry Polenta
- 3 cups Water or Stock
- 1 cup Half and Half
- ½ cup + 2 Tbsp. grated Parmesan, divided
- 4 bone-in Pork Chops, around 8-12 oz. each
- Kosher Salt and Pepper
- 2 cups Arugula
- 1 small Garlic Clove
- ⅓ cup Olive Oil
- Squeeze of Lemon Juice
- 2 Red Bell Peppers, halved and deseeded
Bone-in pork chops are a little more forgiving – they retain their juices better, and pack a lot more flavor.
- Bring the water (or stock) and half and half to a simmer.
- Add the polenta and stir regularly for 10 minutes over medium-low heat until thick. Stir in 2 Tablespoons of the cheese (saving the rest) and set aside to cool.
- When cool, set the polenta on a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a log. Twist the ends to form a tight shape and refrigerate. This can be done well in advance.
- Preheat a grill to 400°F and soak the planks in hot water for at least 15 minutes.
- Rub the chops with a little oil and season well with salt and pepper.
- Set them on the planks and place on the grill, close the lid. Cook for 15 minutes or until you reach an internal temp of 150°F. Set them aside to rest and finish cooking. While the pork chop rests grill the pepper, polenta and make the pesto.
- Place the pepper on the grill and cook until the skin in black and blistered.
- Unwrap the polenta and cut into eight 1” thick slices. Rub with a little oil and grill for 2 minutes per side or until hot.
- Add the arugula to a food processor and with the machine running add the oil, lemon juice, the remaining cheese, and a pinch of salt. Puree until smooth.
- Serve the chops with plenty of pesto, polenta and garnish with charred peppers.
*Keep a spray bottle of water handy in case of flare-ups.