How to Perfectly Cook Pork

Follow these tips to perfectly cook your pork (photo credit: BigStockPhoto.com)

Follow these tips to perfectly cook your pork (photo credit: BigStockPhoto.com)

Pork which is touted as the other white meat is as versatile as it is delicious.  There is no end to the ways that this succulent protein can enhance the meals you use to fill your family’s plates.  Get inspired this month and use these tips to perfectly cook a new pork dish or two.

Baking

Baking pork in the oven is one of the most basic ways to prepare it.  This cooking method works best with pork chops, country-style ribs, sausage, and ground pork.  The most important thing to consider when baking with pork is doneness. You want the interior temperature of the thickest part of the meat to be 145 degrees.  But you also don’t want to overcook your pork and dry it out.  Cook at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes per pound for the best result.  Try Baked Pork Chops and Apples.

Barbecuing

Barbecuing involves slow cooking your pork over a grill, coals, or using a more conventional heat source.  The key to this method is cooking the meat slow and even.  Barbecuing is suited best to all three kinds of ribs, back, country-style, and spare, as well as for pork shoulder.  Although many people also use a flavorful sauce when barbecuing, it is not required. If you are using a grill, make sure you coat the rack with non-stick spray to keep the meat from sticking and use a rack that is slightly removed from the heat source.  Barbecued pork makes a great addition to BBQ Pork Salad with Summer Fruits and Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Braising

To braise pork, you will need a large skillet with a lid.  After browning all sides of the meat using oil, add a little extra liquid to the pan, cover, and simmer.  Braising works well with pork chops, tenderloin, and pork shoulder.  In order to get the best results when browning, don’t put too much meat in the pan at once.   For a great one skillet meal, try Country Pork Skillet.

Broiling

Cooking pork in the broiler is easy and can result in a delicious and juicy meal.  For best results, preheat the broiler pan, position the meat so that it is 3 to 5 inches from the heat source, and turn the meat once.   Broiling works well with pork chops, bacon, tenderloin, ground pork, and any cubed or sliced pork.  For something new try Savory Broiled Medjool Dates.

Grilling

Grilling pork involves cooking it over an open heat source, like a gas or electric grill.  This method is great for cooking pork chops, pork tenderloin, and even ground pork.  Pork can be marinated before grilling or it can be seasoned while it is being cooked.  Make a meal out of America’s Favorite Pork Chops.

You can find locally raised pork right around the corner from these Arizona Farm Bureau members:

 

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