Cooks Illustrated has a recipe for thick cut pork chops that calls for brining, searing in a skillet, and finishing in a hot oven. The recipe calls for bone-in center cut or rib chops, but I have used this recipe for boneless loin chops, and I also frequently skip the brining. Using a meat thermometer keeps the chops from being overcooked. I also sometimes take frozen boneless pork chops, season with herbs or cajun seasoning, and broil. Broiling while frozen helps to keep them juicy, but the time depends on how thick they are. It's one of those things I kind of do by look and feel. Hmmm, I suppose a meat thermometer would be handy for that, as well.
Here's the CI recipe:
Pan-Seared, Oven-Roasted Thick-Cut Pork Chops
Cook's Illustrated Sept-Oct, 1999
3/4 cup lightly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup kosher salt (or 1/4 cup table salt)
10 medium garlic cloves, crushed
4 bay leaves, crumbled
8 whole cloves
3 tablespoons whole black peppercorns, crushed
4 bone-in, 12-ounce, rib loin chops, 1-1/2 inches thick
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
In gallon-sized zipper-lock plastic bag, dissolve sugar and salt in 2 cups hot water. Add garlic, bay leaves, cloves, peppercorns, and 4 cups cold water; cool mixture to room temperature. Add pork chops, then seal bag, pressing out as much air as possible; refrigerate until full seasoned, about 1 hour, turning bag once. Remove chops from brine and dry thoroughly with paper towels.
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position, place shallow roasting pan or jelly roll pan on oven rack, and heat oven to 450°. When oven reaches 450°, heat oil in 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat until shimmering but not smoking, about 2 minutes. Place chops in skillet; cook until well-browned and nice crust has formed on surface, about 2 minutes. Turn chops over with tongs; cook until well-browned and a nice crust has formed on second side, about 2 minutes longer. Using tongs, transfer chops to preheated pan in oven. Roast until instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of each chop [insert thermometer through side, not top] registers 125-127°, 8-10 minutes, turning chops over once halfway through cooking time. Transfer each chop to platter; cover loosely with foil (be sure not to wrap foil tightly around meat), and let rest about 5 minutes. Check internal temperature; it should register about 145°.
NOTE: When I have done this with 6 oz boneless loin chops, it has only taken about 5 minutes in the oven, and I usually forget to turn the chops over.
So many books--So little time.