When buying a whole center cut pork loin, I always slice it into roasts and chops. One of my favorite things to do with those chops is making breaded pork chops. It’s pretty easy to do. These chops are boneless so they are easy to bread and not have to worry about finding a bone in it later on. Plus I think the pork chops with bones are best suited for slow cooking methods.
Almost every time I cook up some pork it starts with a brine. This is a brine that I learned from Alton Brown. The brine will help introduce flavor to the meat and also make a moist chop.
Ingredients for the Brine
2 cups vegetable broth
1/4 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
Combine all the ingredients into a saucepan over high heat. Cook until the salt and sugar are dissolved. Then remove from the heat and add about 1 pound of ice to cool the brine down. Give it a good stir and set it aside. Now take your chops (this brine is probably enough for 4-5 chops) and place it in a gallon sized plastic bag and dump the brine into the bag. Seal the bag well, place it in a container just in case the bag leaks, and place it into the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, 6 if you can. I have found that even 2 hours does make a difference. I have also found that if you leave it too long it becomes too salty for our family.
Set your oven to 350 degrees. After your brine is done, rinse it off, and dry the chops with a paper towel. Now here is what you will need to bread your pork chops. The amount you will need of each will depend on how many chops you are going. And for the seasonings, use them to your personal taste.
Ingredients for Breading
Paprika (Hungarian or Spanish are good options)
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg
Before you begin, season your pork with some kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Then pour some flour and panko into separate containers (pie pans work great for this). Take another container and crack your egg into, beating the egg to combine the yolk and white. Now starting with 1 chop at a time, place it into the flour, and coat both sides. Then into the egg, coat both sides. And finally into the panko and coat both sides. It is important you go in this order. Set aside when finished and do all the chops the same way. When you are all done with breading, sprinkle the paprika and dried thyme onto both sides of each chop.
Now your chops are ready for the oven. I place mine into a glass baking dishthat I have first spraying with some cooking spray. Feel free to cook them in whatever you like. Baking time varies per oven so I would say after about 30-45 minutes. If you have an instant read thermometer, check the temperature to know for sure that they are done. You need to cook them to at least 160 degrees. Since you have brined your pork chops, you have more room for error, so you cook them past 160 and still have moist chops.