It’s no secret that I love pork in all its various forms. Whether it’s bacon, pork chops, ham, pancetta, or tenderloin, it’s all good as far as I’m concerned.
That’s right. I like pig butts and I cannot lie.
I’m sure that love is coded deep down in my DNA… I am equal parts French-Canadian and Portuguese, after all!
While it’s a mainstay on our menu year-round, my love affair with pork goes into high gear during the summertime, when it’s all about barbecued pork in its miriad forms, from slow-smoked to swiftly seared.
So, with grilling season swiftly winding down, I couldn’t resist giving this one last hurrah… and what better way to do that than with these fabulously summery tacos stuffed with bite-sized chunks of pork and a tangy grilled pineapple salsa?
It’s a lovely pairing of flavours – juicy pork chops are seasoned with a sweet-spicy-smoky chipotle marinade, which is echoed by the sweet-spicy-smoky salsa made from charred pineapple spears, cilantro, red onion, hot chili, and tangy lime juice. Add a cold beer and you’ve got yourself the perfect dish to say so long to summertime… at least for now.
Disclosure: I received a pair of awesome t-shirts from Ontario Pork in exchange for writing this post, but wasn’t compensated in any other way. All opinions are entirely my own, as always.
- Pineapple-Chipotle Pork:
- ¼ cup pineapple juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 3 tbsp chipotle powder
- 2 tsp dried Mexican oregano
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 lb thick-cut boneless pork chops (sirloin or loin)
- Grilled Pineapple Salsa:
- ½ fresh pineapple, cored and cut into thick spears
- ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
- ¼ cup finely diced red onion
- 1 red hot chili pepper, finely minced
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- ¼ tsp salt
- 8 small corn tortillas, warmed
- Lime wedges
- Cilantro sprigs
- Pickled red onions
- Hot sauce (optional)
- In a small bowl, whisk together the pineapple juice, olive oil, garlic, chipotle powder, oregano, cumin and salt. Pour into a large zip-seal plastic bag. Add the pork chops, seal shut, and shake to coat the chops with marinade. Place in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 2 hours, or preferably overnight.
- Preheat a lightly-oiled grill to medium-high heat.
- Arrange the pineapple spears on the grill and cook for 3-5 minutes on each side, or until lightly charred around the edges. Transfer to a cutting board and set aside to cool for a few minutes.
- In a medium bowl, combine the remaining salsa ingredients. Roughly chop the pineapple, and add to the bowl. Toss to combine and set aside to let the flavours mingle while you finish the preparations.
- Place the pork chops on the grill and cook over direct heat for about 5-7 minutes per side, or until a meat thermometer registers an internal temperature of 160F. Transfer to a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes, then roughly chop into bite-sized chunks.
- To assemble the tacos, arrange the tortillas on four serving plates. Spoon chopped pork onto the tortillas, dividing evenly, and then top each one with a generous amount of pineapple salsa.
- Serve immediately, with the remaining toppings on the side so that everyone can garnish their tacos as they wish.