Juicy Cuban Pork Chops and Spicy Black Beans with Ron Collins

cuban_pork_chops_and_frijoles_negros

Until you’ve experienced a cut of pork cooked medium rare, you haven’t experienced all that pork can truly be. Too often pork is overcooked out of fear of foodborne illness. The thing to keep in mind is that the FDA guidelines are meant to be as close to being a silver bullet as possible. This simplified standard encourages compliance by avoiding a range of temperatures and contexts for people to commit to memory. While the FDA suggests 160°F for pork, we’re going to cook these pork chops at 140°F in an immersion circulator.

I’ve had my Sansaire Sous Vide Immersion Circulator since December, and nothing has blown me away like its ability to perfectly cook pork. What’s unique about sous vide is that you can cook meats like pork at lower temperatures for a longer duration and serve them medium rare. This is well within the guidelines of food safety, as pasteurization is a function of temperature over time. Sous vide cooking does require this slight paradigm shift, and the way I like to describe it is as an advanced and extremely precise version of slow cooker cooking. Ingredients do behave differently though since food is sealed, and you don’t combine all items like you would in a slow cooker. One of my favorite sous vide cook books has been Modernist Cooking Made Easy by Jason Logsdon, who also keeps his website updated with fresh content covering modern cooking techniques from sous vide to spherification and foams. This recipe below is from his book, and slightly tweaked with the addition of the jalapeño to give the beans a bit more of a kick. I also added a red bell pepper to give the dish some more color. The result is the epitome of sous vide cooking – a beautiful looking meal with an explosion of flavor with minimal effort involved. (If you’d like to jump into sous vide with a meat other than pork, be sure to check out my previous recipe for Earl Grey chicken breasts.) For the drink pairing I kept it simple and chose a Tom Collins variant, the Ron Collins. A Tom Collins is gin, club soda, lemon juice, and simple syrup, and the Cuban variant simply swaps the gin with rum.

Cuban Pork Chops with Frijoles Negros
 
Prep Time
Cook Time
Total Time
 
Author:
Recipe Type: dinner
Ingredients
Pork Chops
  • 1-2 pounds pork chops
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • salt and pepper
Mojo Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 cloves garlic (minced)
  • ⅓ cup orange juice
  • ⅓ cup lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chopped oregano
  • salt and pepper
Frijoles Negros
  • olive oil
  • 2 cups cooked black beans
  • white rice (cooked)
  • ½ cup onion (diced)
  • 1 jalapeño pepper (diced)
  • 1 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • salt and pepper
Instructions
Pork Chops
  1. Combine spices in a bowl and coat the pork chops with them.
  2. Seal pork chops in a sous vide bag and cook for 2 to 3 hours at 140°F.
  3. Make the Mojo Sauce and Frijoles Negros while the pork cooks, then perform the finishing steps.
  4. To finish, remove pork chops from sous vide bag and pat dry.
  5. Sear in a cast iron skillet for 30 to 45 seconds per side while spooning the mojo sauce on top before each flip. Repeat until well seared and coated.
Mojo Sauce
  1. Heat olive oil in a saucepan and cook garlic on medium heat until softened.
  2. Add orange juice, lime juice, and cumin.
  3. Bring to a simmer and add fresh oregano.
Frijoles Negros
  1. Heat olive oil in a saucepan on medium heat and add onion, jalapeño pepper, and red bell pepper. Cook until softened.
  2. Add the garlic and cook until softened.
  3. Add the beans, oregano, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper and simmer on low heat to combine the flavors.
 
Ron Collins
 
Recipe Type: cocktail
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 2 ounces white rum
  • 2 ounces club soda
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • ½ ounce simple syrup
  • lemon wedge (garnish)
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients (except for club soda) in a cocktail shaker and shake until chilled.
  2. Double strain into a Collins glass filled with ice cubes.
  3. Top with club soda and garnish with lemon wedge.
 

 Additional Resources:
Modernist Cooking Made Easy: Sous Vide: The Authoritative Guide to Low Temperature Precision Cooking

 

Sansaire Sous Vide Immersion Circulator

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