Brined Pork Chops With Fennel

Brined Pork Chops With Fennel

Pork and fennel — both fennel seed and the bulb-shaped vegetable — are often companions, and the combination of flavors is quite delicious. For best results, let the chops soak for at least a few hours, preferably overnight, in a quickly made brine.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 2 persons



  1. Step 1

    Make the brine: Put salt, sugar, bay leaves, peppercorns, allspice and fennel seeds in a bowl. Whisk in 4 cups water to dissolve salt and sugar.
  2. Step 2

    Put pork chops in one layer in a glass or plastic container. Pour brine over to completely submerge chops. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferably longer, up to overnight. Remove chops from brine and pat dry. Discard brine.
  3. Step 3

    Cook the chops: Heat oven to 400 degrees. Set a wide, heavy skillet over high heat and add olive oil. When oil is wavy, add chops in one layer and let brown for about 3 minutes per side.
  4. Step 4

    Remove chops from pan and set aside. Reduce heat to medium-high and add sliced onion and fennel, stirring to coat with oil. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until beginning to color, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and crushed fennel seeds and turn off heat.
  5. Step 5

    Lay the chops on top of the onion-fennel mixture (alternatively, transfer all of it to a baking dish) and place pan, uncovered, in oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until the internal temperature of chops is 140 degrees.
  6. Step 6

    Remove chops and let rest for about 5 minutes. Transfer onion-fennel mixture to a platter and keep warm. Cut chops into 1/8-inch slices and add to platter. Sprinkle with parsley and garnish with fennel fronds. Serve with lemon wedges.