An explosion of flavours with juicy, tender meat. Sounds good, right?
The first time I tried pineapple with pork was thanks to Chef Alistair Lethorn, a wizard of Naga cooking. It was his own creation and infused with all the best flavours and ingredients of North East India. After many attempts to recreate that dish at home, I had to come to the conclusion that amazing chefs and their work just can't be replicated, but the technique was one that stuck with me.
The use of pineapple in a marinade – for all meat but especially for pork – is one with a huge host of pros and few cons because the sweet and sour fruit has the power to work its way into the meat and made chemical changes from the inside out. Pineapples contain an enzyme called bromelain which helps to break down and soften muscle fibres to tenderise the meat and allow it to absorb flavours better.
You know when your tongue starts feeling a little numb and fuzzy after you’ve eaten too much pineapple? That’s the enzyme at work breaking down tissue. So while you’re eating the pineapple, the pineapple’s also eating you! But not to worry, it’s not quite powerful enough to complete the job.
Fresh pineapple definitely has a stronger effect, but pineapple juice can work the same wonders on meat so in a marinade and as part of cooking, it’s a game changer. This recipe blends that feature in with fragrant additions which made for a sweet, sour and thoroughly lip-smacking way to grill up some delicious pork chops for dinner.