I don’t know what the temperatures are like where you are but here in coastal Carolina it is sweltering hot. The humidity on top of 95+°F weather is horrible. Since I’m not trying to use more energy to cool the house we’re doing a lot of our cooking on the grill. It helps that we have the pool to cool off in when we need to and face it, grilled food always tastes better!
When you add fresh garden veggies to deliciously grilled meat you have a meal fit for any summer night. That’s how I felt about these herb-rubbed pork chops and grilled vegetable medley. I couldn’t think of a more perfect combination.
Grilling pork chops is an entirely different experience than grilling red meat. While steaks can be charred on the outside and a delicious shade of pink inside, pork needs to be more uniformly cooked throughout. Therefore, use a medium direct heat while grilling pork so the inside cooks evenly with the outside.
Keep in mind when assembling the ingredients for the herb rub that it is more of a template than a hard-and-fast rule. We aren’t going for dainty precision with this technique, just a uniform infusion of robust herbal flavors.
- 2 T. Kosher salt
- 6-8 large fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces
- 2 stems fresh rosemary, leaves stripped from stems and crushed
- 2 T. fresh thyme leaves, crushed with fingers
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 T. black Hawaiian salt
- 4 thick-cut bone-in pork chops, approximately 1” thick
- Combine salt, basil, rosemary, thyme, garlic and pepper thoroughly in a small bowl. Rub mixture over all sides of pork chops until thoroughly covered.
- Scrub grill grates with a wire brush prior to starting. Preheat grill to medium before adding pork chops over direct heat. Cook for 7-8 minutes, turn once, but otherwise keep the lid closed as much as possible. If your chops are thinner or thicker than 1”, adjust cook time accordingly.
- Remove chops from heat, cover and let rest for 3 - 5 minutes before serving. Serve with a grilled summer vegetable medley and top with a pat of compound butter seasoned with the same herbs used in the rub.
Grilled Summer Vegetable Medley with Herb Butter
Grilling is a great way to enhance the natural sweetness of summer garden vegetable. For best results, cut all vegetables to a uniform thickness and angle your cuts to ensure the largest surface area possible.
- 4 T. unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 t. fresh thyme leaves, stems removed
- Pinch of salt, or prepare on Himalayan salt block.
- 3 small yellow squash, washed and halved
- 3 small zucchini, washed and halved.
- 3 red bell pepper, core removed and cut into equal-sized flat pieces
- 1 medium red onion, tough outer layer removed and cut into ½“ half round sections
- 3 T. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 T. black Hawaiian salt
For herb butter, combine butter, thyme, and salt into a small bowl or on a Himalayan salt block, if you have one. (Do not add additional salt if you use this method). Combine thoroughly with a fork (bowl method) or a large knife blade (salt block). When finished, transfer to a serving container.
Prepare grill by brushing grates with a wire brush. Set heat to medium. When ready, the temperature should be between 350-450 degrees.
Brush both sides of each vegetable section with extra virgin olive oil and place on grill. Cook on medium, direct heat until vegetables are crisp-tender. For zucchini and yellow squash, this should take about 5 minutes. Onion and bell pepper will take approximately 10-12 minutes, maybe slightly longer. Turn once while cooking.
Remove from heat and serve immediately with grilled bone-in pork chops. Add a pat of herb butter to the vegetables and pork chop for an extra bit of flavor and a nice presentation