To prepare the brine: In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add apple cider and water; bring to a boil. Add kosher salt, brown sugar, pepper, sage and cinnamon, stirring to dissolve. Remove from heat and let cool (chill brine completely in the refrigerator before adding pork).
NOTE: To determine how much brine you'll need, place the meat to be brined in your chosen container. Add water to cover. Remove the meat and measure the water.
Cider-Brined Pork Chops:
Prepare Cider Brine. Put the chops into a large glass dish. Pour the prepared cold brine over the chops, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 12 hours and up to 24 hours.
Soak the dried cranberries or cherries in the brandy for 30 minutes. Drain, reserving the fruit and brandy separately; set aside.
Remove the pork chops from the brine. Rinse pork twice after removing it from the brine solution; discard brine. NOTE: If you are not ready to cook at the end of the brining time, remove and rinse the meat. Refrigerate until ready to use. Pat pork chops dry with paper towels.
In a large frying pan over medium heat, heat the oil. When the pan is hot, add the pork chops and cook approximately 5 minutes per side, or until the internal temperature reaches a temperature of 155°F on a meat thermometer. Remove the chops from the pan and keep warm. Pour off any fat in the pan.
Place the frying pan back on medium-high heat. Deglaze with the reserved brandy, cooking until reduced by about half. Add the chicken broth, apple cider, and cranberries or cherries. Cook until reduced by half. Turn the heat to medium-low. Put the cornstarch into a measuring cup and whisk in the milk and mustard. Stir several spoonfuls of the hot broth mixture, one at a time, into the milk to warm. Add to the pan, stirring until lightly thickened. Spoon the sauce over the chops and serve.
Go to Full Version of