Tamarind-glazed Pork Chops with Sugar and Spice Sweet Potatoes
Rich barbecue flavor wraps double-thick pork chops. They are served with sweet potatoes which have been treated to cinnamon, sugar, and butter. Creole spice is a mixture of salt, paprika, black pepper, white pepper, and cayenne; you can purchase it in most grocery stores, and indeed, Emeril has his own brand of the mixture.
- Tamarind Glaze
- Tamarind paste - 2 tablespoons (available in Latin food stores and specialty stores)
- Dark cane syrup - 3 teaspoons (alt. molasses)
- Chili Powder - 1/8 teaspoon
- Water - 2 tablespoons
- Garlic - 1 tablespoon, chopped
- Ketchup - 2 tablespoons
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Pork Chops - 4 double-thick (14 to 16 oz each)
- Creole spice mix - 4 teaspoons
- Sweet potatoes - 3 cups parboiled, sliced
- Cinnamon - 1 teaspoon
- Sugar - 2 tablespoons
- Unsalted Butter - 2 tablespoons
- Green Onions - 2 teaspoons, chopped
- Red Bell Pepper - 1 tablespoon small-dice
To prepare the glaze: Combine all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Set aside, reserving half for a drizzle or dipping sauce.
To prepare the chops: Light a large quantity of charcoal briquettes in a large, covered charcoal grill and let the coals burn until they are covered with light ash. Prepare for indirect cooking by forming the coals into a circle around the perimeter of the grill. Place the cooking grill on top.
Season each chop with 1 teaspoon Creole spice mix. Place the chops in the center of the cooking grate. Cover, leaving the ventilation holes open, and cook about 20 minutes, turning once half-way through the grilling to get good grill marks on both sides. Begin basting occasionally with Tamarind Glaze as you prepare the sweet potatoes.
Place the sweet potatoes in the center of a 12×12-inch square of foil. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Cut the butter into small cubes and dot the potatoes with butter. Bring up 2 opposite sides of foil, leaving a little space for expansion, and tightly seal the top, then seal each end. Place the foil-wrapped potatoes on the cooking grate and cook until heated through.
To serve: Place one pork chop on each warmed serving plate. Divide the potatoes among the plates. Garnish with chopped green onion and diced red bell pepper. Drizzle with more glaze if desired, or use as a dipping sauce.