Simple brined chops with bacon and chicory salad

‘Brining is a brilliant way of getting more succulence and flavour into a chop’
Ingredients (Serves 4)
  • 4 x 2cm/¾in thick, boned and skinned pork chops
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
For the brine
  • 30g/1¼oz granulated sugar
  • 15g/½oz salt
  • 200ml/½pt cold water
For the salad
  • 2 heads chicory
  • Juice of 1small lemon
  • 6 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 4 cooked crispy streaky bacon rashers, finely chopped
  • Freshly ground black pepper


First make the brine. Place all the ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to the boil to dissolve the sugar and salt. Set aside to cool. The total weight of the brine should be 345ml/11½fl oz. If it’s less than this, make up the volume with some cold water.

Press the pork chops out with the back of a knife to stretch them slightly then transfer to a bowl. Pour the cold brine over the chops and mix well then leave to marinate for 20-30 minutes. After this time, remove the chops and pat them dry. Chill until needed.

Meanwhile, make the salad. Slice the chicory finely and put into a bowl then add the lemon juice and mix well – this will help prevent the chicory discolouring.

Stir in the mayonnaise and crispy bacon and season well with black pepper. Mix well, transfer to an airtight lidded container and chill until needed.

Heat a gas barbecue to 230°C, 450°F, Gas 8, or if you’re cooking over charcoal the coals should be grey.

Lightly coat the pork chops with the olive oil and sprinkle with a little black pepper. Carefully brush the barbecue bars/grill with a little oil dabbed on kitchen paper. Cook the chops for 7-8 minutes on each side or until cooked through.

Serve with the bacon and chicory salad