Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Chef Edward Lee's Pork Chop with Bourbon Mustard Sauce

[FTC Standard Disclosure] We received no compensation for this post. However, in full disclosure, I have contracted with Oklahoma Joe's in the past. 

This past weekend, I made Chef Edward Lee's recipe for Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX. It was succulent, smoky, and delicious.

Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX


The James Beard Award-winning author, chef, and television personality loaded up his Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX (just like mine) in an old Chevy truck and went trailgating through bourbon country. What is trailgating? 

Trailgating is a journey. A journey down the bourbon trail to discover the flavors and stories that make bourbon and BBQ American traditions.  ~Chef Edward Lee

Oklahoma Joe's tagged along and created a well-produced and inspirational docu-series about Chef's journey. It's only about 10 minutes per episode, and they are absolutely worth the watch. You can find the four installments HERE. In each episode, Chef shares a recipe inspired by the stories that he found.

The Grilled Pork Chop with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce is the first such recipe.  Here is how my cook-along went.

The Prep

After watching the video, I didn't want my pork chop to be a run-of-the-mill pork chop, so I went on a journey of my own to Hen + Hoc in Knoxville's Old City.


Hen and Hoc Butchers located in Old City Knoxville TN


Thick Duroc pork chop
There I got this beautiful Duroc pork chop. The edge was more like a pork belly than a pork chop. That fact alone would drive my cooking choices.

Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX
Since Chef Lee and Freddy Noe (Great-Great Grandson of Jim Beam) mentioned small batch bourbon, I used Knob Creek Small Batch for the 1-2 punch of bourbon in the marinade and sauce.


Making the Knob Creek Bourbon marinade
There really wasn't a lot of prep to do. Just reduce the bourbon and make the simple marinade.

Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX
This is a quick marinade and doesn't take long. I put it in a bag and flipped it a few times over the course of 90 minutes.


The Cook

This gorgeously thick chop looked like a pork belly, so I treated it like one, and instead of grilling, I gave it time to wallow in smoke and render those sections of fat. So I varied from the recipe and went with a reverse-sear for my cook.


Firing up the Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX Pellet Grill
Like Chef Lee, I used Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX for this cook. With the ability to easily switch from Smoke to Sear, The Rider DLX is ideal for the reverse-sear technique.

Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX
I put the pork chop and veggies on the upper rack for the smoke session. I ran the pit at 225°f, and I used oak pellets with mellowing charcoal in them, for fuel and smoke.

I figured that this pork chop would render a good bit of pork fat, so I got clever. I used a Multi-Purpose Flex Rack and put a small sheet pan underneath to catch the drippings. Sure, it would keep the grill clean, but I did this mainly to get the rendered deliciousness to add to the sauce.



Using the Theromworks® Smoke remote probe thermometer to monitor temps from afar.
The Rider DLX comes with an onboard internal meat thermometer, but I had things to do upstairs. So I hooked up the Thermoworks® Smoke so I could monitor the cook from afar. 

Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX
It took right at 90 minutes for the pork chop to hit an internal temperature of 140°f and the veggies were just about perfectly done in that time frame too. I took it out to rest...

The Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX switches easily from Smoke to Sear, making it ideal for the reverse sear technique.
while I switched the Rider DLX from Smoke to Sear and waited about 15 minutes.

Whisking the pan drippings into the Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce. Not to brag on myself, but this was a fantastic idea.


Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX
Then I seared the chop for about 1 minute per side.


The Results

Grilled Pork Chops with Knob Creek® Bourbon Mustard Sauce on the Oklahoma Joe's® Rider DLX
This was the best thing that I ate all week. First, the pork chop was delightfully smoky and rendered to perfection; the bites almost melted in my mouth. The bourbon mustard sauce was creamy, delicious, and the flavors of bourbon and mustard helped offset the richness of the pork chop. This recipe is a keeper.

I'm looking forward to watching the next video when Chef Lee visits Buffalo Trace and makes a Peach Glazed Beef Short Rib. I'm always a sucker for a good beef short rib.

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