I was chatting with a colleague the other day when he mentioned that he doesn’t like pork chops. The comment ignited a lively discussion, as we both agreed that no one we know–chefs, home cooks, whomever–can cook a pork chop decently. They are rarely if ever juicy and succulent as other cuts of pork can be. They are frequently as hard and dry as hockey pucks, or close, and nearly tasteless. Sauces may mask the dryness and lack of flavor but they never fully compensate for it.

We are talking, of course, about loin chops, not shoulder chops. Now that most pork in America–but not heritage pork–is unnaturally lean, it has become very difficult if not impossible to get a good result.

Pork chops are notoriously difficult to prepare well. Do you have a secret? If so, please share it.

This has got me thinking. What is everyone else’s take on the subject? Care to weigh in? If you disagree, please describe the dish and the pork chop itself in as much detail as possible.

I realize that, on one hand, I am standing up to be shot because of this admission. It’s so easy to say “hey, I love pork chops and you’re an idiot.” But such comments won’t be posted. I’m looking for a good conversation so, please, don’t be snarky.