For the longest time I never noticed the harmony that apples and pork have together. When I was young, I had apple sauce on my ham, apple juice cooked my pork chops, and every pig roast I had ever seen had an apple in its mouth. It was not until recently that I realized that I had been taking the two of them for granted. Today I relish the taste of sweet apples with my pork. This recipe gives the best of both worlds by adding a little lick of fire to the mix.
METHOD Apple Cider Sauce
Stir together the cider, honey, soy sauce, pepper, cilantro, garlic, sliced onion, and green onions.
Place the steaks into a glass dish large enough to hold them all in a single layer. Pour enough of the apple cider sauce over the steaks to cover them, reserving any sauce that is not used. Cover and refrigerate the marinade and the steaks for 4 to 6 hours.
Remove the steaks from the marinade and pour the marinade into a saucepan. Add any leftover marinade to that same saucepan, and bring the contents to a boil. Continue to boil until the sauce has reduced by half. Using a hand blender, or a food processor, purée until the sauce is smooth.
Grill–Roasted Apples and Pork Steaks
Wrap 2 slices of bacon around each marinated pork steak, securing them with toothpicks.
Using a melon baller, scoop out the cores of the apples, leaving about an inch intact at the bottom to form a closed cavity. Mix together the brown sugar and the butter. Pack about 1 tbsp. of the butter mixture into each of the cavities in the apples. Place the apples on the pre-soaked plank.
Preheat the grill to medium–high.
Set the plank with the apples on the preheated grill. Drizzle 1 tbsp. of sauce into each of the apple cavities. Clase the lid and grill–roast for 30 minutes.
Open the lid and drizzle 1 tbsp more of the sauce into the apples. Roast for another 10 minutes, or until the apples are tender enough to pierce easily with a toothpick but still hold their shape. Remove from the grill. Cut into 6 to 8 wedges and grill directly over high heat for 1 to 2 minutes per side to lightly char. Remove from grill and keep warm.
Place the steaks on the grill and cook for 5 to 6 minutes per side, basting liberally with the apple cider sauce. Steaks are done when the juices run clear, bacon is crisp, and/or the internal temperature reaches 145°F. Let rest 3 to 4 minutes before serving.
Serve the steaks with a baked apple on the side, drizzling for of the sauce over the apple and steaks.
Okay, so perhaps I am jumping the gun with this incredibly autumn-esque recipe, and for certain this would be a great meal in the fall. But apples and pork are so very delicious together and I wanted to let the world know that they should take notice of something that we have been taking for granted for so long.