To Make Brine:
5 cups apple cider
3 tsp sea salt
2 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp red chile flakes
Mix in large bowl with air tight container. Add 6 bone-in 1 inch thick Pork Chops
Seal container and chill, turning occasionally for at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.
When you are ready to cook chops:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Remove pork chops from brine and blot dry. Melt 2 TBS butter in a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add pork chops, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until well browned. Flip chops and cook other side. Remove from skillet and layer chops in a 9×13 pan and bake until barely pink in the center (about 15 to 20 minutes).
Meanwhile add about a cup of apple cider into hot frying pan and deglaze with a wooden spoon to dislodge browned bits. Add 3/4 cup chicken stock or white wine to skillet, turn up the heat and boil till reduced to about 1/2 cup (8 to 10 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in 1 tsp butter and 2 TBS whole grain mustard. When sauce is no longer bubbling stir in 1/2 cup creme fraiche (or heavy cream can be used). Season with 1/2 tsp of pepper, and 1 tsp salt. Remove Pork chops from oven and spoon a generous amounts of sauce over each chop. Serve topped with sauteed apples.
To Sautee Apples: peel and core 3 large apples and cut into 1/4 wedges. In medium frying pan sautee with 2 TBS butter, 2 TBS cider vinegar and 1/4 tsp salt. Cook until apples are soft and golden, but not mushy, (4 to 6 minutes).
Cider Brined Pork
To Make Brine: