Grilling Pork Chops and Pork Belly - Μπριζόλες και πανσέτες

Grilling pork chops and pork belly can yield delicious results when done correctly. Whether you’re using a gas grill, charcoal grill, or the versatile DrumGrill Smoker, these steps will help you achieve perfectly cooked, flavorful pork every time.

Selecting the Right Cuts

Pork Chops:

  • Source: Either from ribs (with a long bone and round meat) or from the neck (long and more fatty).
  • Appearance: Rib chops have less fat than neck chops.

Pork Belly (Pancetta):

  • Source: Located on the belly, below the ribs.
  • Appearance: One of the fattiest parts, ideal for grilling due to its rich flavor.

Ideal Thickness for Grilling

  • Pork Chops: 2.5 – 3 cm
  • Pork Belly: 2 – 2.5 cm

Preparation

  1. Marinade: Pork belly is typically marinated for 2-3 hours using a light BBQ marinade.
    • Note: Ensure to drain and pat dry the meat thoroughly, especially those marinated with ingredients like tomatoes or sugar to prevent burning.

Grilling Instructions

  1. Preheat the Grill:
    • Set up your grill, whether it’s gas, charcoal, or a DrumGrill Smoker.
    • Preheat and oil the grate to prevent sticking.
  2. Initial Sear:
    • Place the pοrk pieces on high heat.
    • Grill for 4-5 minutes on each side. High heat helps sear the meat, creating grill marks and sealing in the juices.
  3. Continue Cooking:
    • After the initial sear, continue grilling the pοrk for another 15-20 minutes.
    • Turn the pieces frequently to ensure even cooking and prevent burning.
    • Tip: Move pieces that cook faster to cooler parts of the grill.
  4. Final Touches:
    • For pοrk belly, check frequently as it tends to cook faster due to its fat content.
    • Aim for a caramelized, glazed finish without burning.
    • Once done, move the pieces to a higher rack on the grill to keep warm while the rest finish cooking.
  5. Resting:
    • Allow the pοrk to rest for about 5 minutes after removing from the grill. This helps retain moisture and allows the juices to redistribute.

Seasoning

  • Season the cooked meat with salt and your choice of herbs like thyme or oregano just before serving. Avoid adding herbs too early as they may burn and turn bitter.

Safety Tip

  • Ensure pork is well-cooked; it should be white inside with no traces of blood.

Additional Tips

  • Use Quality Products: Enhance your BBQ experience with high-quality BBQ smoking wood chunks and flavorful BBQ rubs.
  • Avoid Flare-ups: Keep an eye on fatty cuts to prevent flare-ups that can char the meat.